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The personal and institutional impacts of a mass participation leadership programme for women working in Higher Education: a longitudinal analysis
journal contributionposted on 10.03.2021, 12:19 by Sarah Barnard, John Arnold, Sara Bosley, Fehmidah Munir
During the last eight years, over 8000 academic faculty and professional services women working in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland have participated in a women-only leadership in higher education programme called Aurora. The organization that designed and delivers the programme (Advance HE) sees it as an important force for change in the sector. However, the potential for meaningful change in traditionally male domains through greater representation of women may be undermined by organizations that remain gendered. To address these issues this article outlines findings from a longitudinal, mixed-methods study on women working in higher education (HE), drawing on data from 1094 research participants. Women completed online surveys at different time points before and after participation in Aurora, with a smaller sample of participants taking part in in-depth interviews and diaries. Analysis of these data shows that the leadership programme is perceived to have a significant impact on some behaviours and attitudes of women and this impact does not on the whole diminish over time. This research is important as it is the first longitudinal study of its kind that includes both professional services and academic women. The findings will be of interest to higher education institutions (HEIs) globally that wish to develop organizational contexts in which women go on to lead.
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