Modern Day Challenges in Academia
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Modern Day Challenges in Academia

Time for a Change

Edited by Marilena Antoniadou and Mark Crowder

Examining the modern day challenges faced by academics throughout their working lives, this timely book investigates the ways in which academic careers are changing, the reasons for these changes and their potential future impacts. Contributors with insider experience of both traditional research focussed universities and newer institutions with an emphasis on teaching, utilise theoretical and empirical methods to provide international perspectives on the key issues confronting modern day academics.
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Chapter 17: Academic leadership: challenges and opportunities for leaders and leadership development in higher education

Stephanie K. Rehbock


This chapter illustrates the unique demands of leadership in academia, a context which is currently characterized by changing conditions and developments such as new public management and heightened international competition. Academics have to fulfil multiple demands and are increasingly expected to be effective leaders. I will provide a literature overview of research on academic leadership by differentiating between administrative and research leadership. The majority of empirical evidence has focused on administrative leadership in the UK and in the US, for instance by investigating the role of pro-vice-chancellors and university presidents. In contrast, evidence on research leadership is scarce. Although research leadership, meaning leading research projects and creating a vision for a research group, is as present as administrative leadership in everyday academic work, there are only a few studies in this area. Nonetheless, effective leadership contributes highly to academic success. Based on my illustrations, I will emphasize the need for systematic development of research leadership in higher education and offer suggestions on how to improve targeted development of leaders in the higher education system.

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