Professor Nicola Martin
Higher Degrees and Student Experience Division of Education
London South Bank University
Stimulus Paper, March 2017
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This research draws attention to the various barriers to encouraging and developing disabled leaders in Higher Education, including: limitations of the Equality Act 2010, stereotyping, invisibility of role models, limited senior buy in to strategic change, ableist assumptions, and disorganised infrastructure. There was evidence that disabled people often possess characteristics associated with effective leadership. In many instances, contributors were making effective use of problem solving skills gained through navigating disabling barriers in their approach to leading and encouraging colleagues and building functional teams and productive alliances. A key finding was that a striking degree of congruence emerged between participants’ descriptions of their own values and approaches as leaders and the principles of distributed leadership.
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