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Professor Richard Watermeyer leads on Advance HE leadership study involved in developing a global survey and framework

Professor of Education at the School of Education, Richard Watermeyer Prof. R. Watermeyer

Advance HE

1 September 2021

School of Education’s Professor of Education Richard Watermeyer is leading an international scoping study on leadership in higher education which asks the question ‘so what works for leadership in higher education?’ and invites individual expressions of interest to contribute.

Described as ‘the first step in the development of a global survey for leadership in higher education’, Advance HE has commissioned a scoping study that will be led by the University of Bristol and involve colleagues from the University of the West of England and Swansea University. The research study will consist of a series of ten roundtable discussion with key stakeholders as well as a literature review. The Advance HE Leadership Survey is intended to enhance understanding of what it is to lead and be led in higher education settings and in corollary, to elucidate broad perspectives of what counts as effective leadership where practiced across disciplinary, professional, institutional and sectoral variations.

Project manager of the research group, School of Education’s Professor Richard Watermeyer, talks about the impact of the pandemic and how it has sharpened the focus on leadership in higher education -

“The pandemic has placed – and continues to place – a huge strain on the international higher education community, most obviously in terms of institutional operations and finance yet also as relates to individuals’ health and wellbeing. It has shown that leadership is far broader and far more nuanced than is habitually conceived and that it is the privilege not only of appointed leaders and management hierarchies, but the democratic right and responsibility of all members of an unmistakably heterogenous congregation.”

Professor Watermeyer, Co-Director of the Centre for Higher Education Transformations, emphasises how this conversation will be led by the members of the higher education community and encourages as many as possible to register their interest in participating. To sign up for the Round Table discussions, visit the Advance HE website.

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