Research Paper 18 - Learning and Leadership: Exploring the linkages between higher education and developmental leadership

Has the international community devoted too little attention to the role of higher education in promoting developmental outcomes? Can higher education make a significant contribution to the emergence of developmental leadership in all sectors of society, both public and private? If so, how? And what is the evidence for this?

An earlier DLP paper, Higher education and the formation of developmental elites (February 2011), showed that despite evidence for a clear and positive correlation between higher education and good governance, this is an area that has been largely neglected by the international community in favour of an emphasis on basic or primary education.

Key points:

This paper is part of a stream of DLP research which explores these issues and will culminate in an international conference on this and related work. It surveys the evidence from a wide literature, examining which aspects of the provision and delivery of higher education can promote the emergence of developmental leadership. 

It focuses on the influence of subjects studied and competencies developed; approaches to both teaching and learning; the way higher education institutes are governed; the values transmitted in tertiary study; and the opportunities for the formation of relationships, networks and subsequent informal and formal developmental coalitions. 


About DLP

The Developmental Leadership Program (DLP) is an international research initiative that explores how leadership, power and political processes drive or block successful development.

DLP focuses on the crucial role of home-grown leaderships and coalitions in forging legitimate political settlements and institutions that promote developmental outcomes, such as sustainable growth, political stability and inclusive social development.

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