Building Leadership Capacity for Business Schools – A collection of thought pieces on leadership in business schools



One of the frequently stated missions of business schools is to produce future leaders who make a difference in the world. Curiously, there are few studies of business school leaders. Currently, 18% of business school deans’ jobs in the UK have an acting dean or are being advertised. Our colleagues at AACSB, ABDC (Australian Business Deans Council), and CFBSD (Canadian Federation of Business School Deans) also report a high turnover of deans in business schools in Australia and North America. As the Association of Business Schools has positioned itself since 2001 in part as ‘the school for business schools’ by supporting capacity building amongst our members with cohort programmes such as the Deans’ and Directors’ Development Programme, it is appropriate that we reflect on our own strategic leadership. How will we continue to develop competences that are fit for future models of business and management education and research in a more digitally networked and collaborative economy? How will we hire, develop, and assess those responsible for UK business schools?

On 8 October 2014, the Association of Business Schools held its second annual ‘business school leadership pipeline’ workshop. This generated a series of thought pieces that we have compiled for wider dissemination. 

You can download the full PDF of the publication here

Alternatively, as part of our Business School Leadership Series we’ll be publishing a selection of the articles individually each month. Below are the articles featured in our November newsletter:

Prof. Ken Starkey and Dr Christophe Lejeune - Back down to earth? Business school leadership at a time of disruption 
Dr Julie Davies - Future-proofing the UK business school deanship 
Dr Giovanna Bono - ABS 2014 Survey on leadership amongst deans: key results 
Prof. Graeme Currie  - Hybrid managers in business schools and observing the complex environment facing leaders

We have further articles for our December newsletter:

Kai Peters Business school leadership: Balancing a portfolio
• Prof. Zahir Irani - Knowing when to step down: A personal reflection
Prof. Sharon Mavin and Dr Ceridwyn Bessant Leaders on the line: Enhancing the leadership capability of first-line-manager academics
Prof. Nick Oliver, Prof. Andrew Brown and Prof. Mike LewisBusiness school deans: Leadership in a complex, multi-stakeholder environment
We have further articles for our January newsletter:
Prof. Robert MacIntosh, Gordon Jack, and Prof. Kevin O’Gorman - Who’d be a dean? Leadership in a low-authority environment 
• Prof. Kimmo Alajoutsijärvi, Jyväskylä and Dr Kerttu Kettunen, Turku School of Economics - Business school deans go global: A contextual approach
• Dr Patrick Cullen - Leadership development beyond the dean’s office
• Prof. Sandy Pepper - Leadership in business schools and professional services firms

Contact Us

For further details on how you can contribute articles and thought pieces to the Association of Business Schools, contact Melissa Jumbo at