Developing Leaders in the Higher Education Sector: Experiences of Alumni in a Senior Leadership Development Programme

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Large-scale changes in the UK Higher Education have occurred in recent years. The pressures in the sector have been well documented by authors such as Turnbull and Edwards (2005); Clarke (2013); Siebert and Martin, (2013); Zuber-Skerritt and Louw, (2014) amongst others. Clearly for senior leaders in HE, such challenges linked to increasing marketization and internationalisation in the sector, the need to deliver transformational change through leading diverse teams of individuals typically drawn from both professional service and academic backgrounds, are demanding. Given this background continued learning and development, is becoming increasingly vital for senior management HE teams. This paper presents some early findings from in-depth interviews with senior leaders who were either in Dean positions or higher, as well as other professionals (e.g. HR Directors, University Secretaries etc.) who held executive roles in UK universities who had participated in a prestigious development programme delivered to senior managers and leaders in the UK HE sector. It should be noted that the wider research study involved other data collection techniques such as survey with the entire population of alumni who had participated in the programme over a 16-year period and interviewing a number of sponsors in an attempt to understand their motivations for referring participants, as well as development programme facilitators to ascertain their views on the most valuable ways to develop such HE sector leaders and managers. Ultimately the wider research study sought to understand what the alumni, educators and sponsors really valued in terms of developmental experiences and how the material and knowledge participants received could be transferred back to their institutions.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 3 Jun 2017
EventUniversity Forum for HRD Lisbon, Portugal - Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal
Duration: 2 Jan 20204 Jan 2020


ConferenceUniversity Forum for HRD Lisbon, Portugal


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