Development Programme for Directors of Research (DPDoR) 2022-23

Develop your strategic capabilities to manage research performance, strategy, and funding

The Development Programme for Directors of Research (DPDoR) helps those who are preparing for the role of Director of Research to build leadership capacity; to better understand the complexities of the role; and the nuances of delivering a research strategy and mission in these highly uncertain times.

Facilitated by Professor Natasha Mauthner, Director of Research at Newcastle University Business School, DPDoR is a multi-dimensional development programme designed to nurture professional and leadership development. Each module tackles a range of critical issues led by expert guest speakers and discussions are under the Chatham House Rule giving participants the opportunity for candid and frank discussion.

DPDoR has successfully run for over 15 years as part of a joint initiative between the Chartered Association of Business Schools and the British Academy of Management. During this time, the programme has prepared around 250 senior academics to lead their institutions’ research and navigate the internal and external demands of the day.

In 2022-23, the DPDoR programme will adopt an interactive and participatory format. Participants will be given opportunities to feed in questions to help shape the programme and its focus. Before each of the four sessions, participants will be asked to undertake preparatory work relevant to each session, reflecting on their own situation and context. Sessions will include group work to facilitate peer-to-peer learning. Participants will be encouraged to share relevant experiences and resources. Experienced research leaders from diverse backgrounds and different types of business school will be invited to each session to facilitate group discussions and share insights. The programme will focus on strategic capabilities as well as practical skills and competencies. Participants will be encouraged and supported to create a cohesive cohort for networking and staying in touch between the sessions and after completion of the programme.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the programme you will have deepened your understanding about the role of Director of Research and about the skills, knowledge and behaviours that are important in the role. You will have had the opportunity to:

  • Build and enhance the skills and competencies required to be an effective Director of Research
  • Understand how the current external research, funding and policy environment affects your strategy for business and management research
  • Gain confidence in managing internal pressures, relationships, faculty performance and HR
  • Explore approaches to managing the REF process from strategy, implementation and the presentation of results

Session One

Thursday 24 - Friday 25 November, London

Setting the scene for research leadership in UK business schools: Diversity of experiences

Participants in the DPDoR programme are a diverse group of academics, at various career stages, and based in different types of UK business schools. This session uses participatory learning exercises to find out about the diversity of experiences, contexts, aspirations and challenges amongst participants. We will also begin the work of building the 2021/22 DPDoR cohort into a supportive group of colleagues who can learn from one another during and outside/beyond the programme sessions.

Session Two

Thursday 19 - Friday 20 January, London

Developing a research strategy

 Continuing with a participatory learning approach, this session will focus on how to develop a research strategy, what its key elements might be, and the varieties of research strategy, and leadership/management approaches, depending on institutional contexts.

Session Three

Thursday 2 - Friday 3 March, London

Nurturing researchers and an inclusive research culture

Session 3 will focus on how to nurture a diverse community of researchers, and how to build an inclusive and supportive research culture that values varied research contributions and career pathways. Topics include: developing a mentoring programme and culture; developing and leading diverse research communities; promoting equality, diversity and inclusion; nurturing early career researchers; managing the impact of COVID19; developing postgraduate researchers; supporting and managing research performance; supporting research leadership development.

Session Four

Thursday 8 - Friday 9 June, London

Building a research infrastructure

Session 4 explores how to build a research infrastructure to support excellent research.

Topics include: strategies for research grant income generation; the role of research centres; capacity-building; internal allocation of time and funding for research, innovation and impact; research facilities; data capture systems; working with professional services colleagues; and responding to open access and sustainability agendas.

Professor Natasha Mauthner
Director of Research, Newcastle University Business School

Natasha Mauthner is a Professor of Social Science Philosophy and Method and joined the Newcastle University Business School as Director of Research in September 2018. Prior to this appointment, she worked at the University of Aberdeen’s Business School (2003-2018) where she was Director of Research (2012-2018), led the REF2014 Business and Management submission, and was the Research Lead on the Business School’s Athena SWAN Bronze Award (2016-17). From 2013 to 2018 Natasha was an Associate Director of the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships, a consortium centre based at the University of Edinburgh. Natasha has also held research posts at the University of Aberdeen’s Arkleton Centre for Rural Development Research (1998-2003) and Health Services Research Unit (1995-1996), and the University of Edinburgh’s Research Unit in Health and Behavioural Change (1996-1998). Natasha has an Honorary Chair at the University of Aberdeen's Business School, and has had visiting appointments at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Carlton University in Canada, University of Melbourne in Australia, and the University of Canterbury in New Zealand.

Natasha holds an undergraduate degree in the natural sciences from the University of Cambridge (awarded 1989), in which she studied biology, history and philosophy of science, and experimental psychology. She moved into the Social and Political Sciences Faculty at the University of Cambridge for her PhD (awarded 1994), funded by a Medical Research Council studentship. Her doctoral thesis explored women's experiences of motherhood and was published as The Darkest Days of my Life: Stories of Postpartum Depression (Harvard University Press, 2002). In 1994 she took up a postdoctoral fellowship at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education to work with Professor Carol Gilligan funded by scholarships from the Fulbright Commission, the Harold Hyam Wingate Foundation, and the American Association of University Women Educational Foundation.

In 2017 Natasha was elected Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in recognition of her international expertise and contribution to the development of a critical social science and methodological innovation in qualitative research.

Natasha has published over 60 peer reviewed journal articles and book chapters, and a book by Harvard University Press. She has contributed to leading journals such as SociologyGender, Work and Organisation; and Work, Employment and Society, and to benchmark edited collections (most recently a piece on research ethics for the Sage Handbook of Qualitative Research Ethics, 2018) and encyclopaedia entries (most recently on ‘Data Sharing Methods’ in the Wiley-Blackwell's Encyclopedia of Sociology, 2017).

Natasha is an Editorial Board Member of Qualitative Research and sits on the Chartered Association of Business Schools Research Committee. She has acted as an External Reviewer of Research Excellence Framework preparations for several universities.

Funding sources for Natasha's research have included the Economic and Social Research Council, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the European Union, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, the Society for Research Into Higher Education, the Carnegie Trust, the Royal Society of Edinburgh and the Scottish Universities Insight Institute.

Natasha has been engaged in a programme of knowledge exchange activities through contributions to the media, public events, blogs, practitioner conferences, collaborative projects with artists, and the development of academic-policy-practitioner networks.

Natasha has undertaken extensive undergraduate and postgraduate teaching over the past 30 years, and she has a passion for teaching courses on research philosophies and methods; and gender, work and organisation.

Who should apply?

  • Directors of Research
  • Those working towards the role of Director of Research

Participants on DPDoR, once accepted, are encouraged to discuss with their Dean or Head of Department their learning objectives and prospective actions for research strategy from the programme. Reflections upon this and discussion about realising prospective learning and actions will form a central component of the DPDoR.


“I really valued the community of Research Directors that this programme enabled me to connect with. Sharing experiences in candid conversations made this totally worthwhile.”

Professor Katy Mason, Research Enhancement Director, Lancaster University Management School

“This has been an excellent experience. A good balance of interesting guest speakers and discussion within the group. I am going away with a more strategic focus and lots of good ideas I can implement within my institution.”

Dr Marian Iszatt-White, Lecturer in Department of Leadership and Management and LUMS Doctoral Director, Lancaster University Management School

“The programme has been excellent and the input and discussion thought provoking”

Professor Helen Shipton, Professor of International Human Resource Management and Co-Director of the Centre of People, Work and Organisational Practice, Nottingham Business School

“This was an excellent programme”

Will Harvey, Associate Dean (Research & Impact), University of Exeter

“This was an extraordinary experience, better than my best expectations!”

Alcino Azevedo, Senior Lecturer in Finance, Aston Business School

Programme fee: £3,875

Please note: Due to the nature of the programme which focuses on personal development and encourages frank and open discussion, it may not always be suitable for two participants to attend from the same institution. If we receive two registrations from individuals at the same institution we will notify the institution and the participants, taking account of when the registrations were received, and ask for guidance on whether one or both can attend on the same programme.

If you have any queries, please contact Pritika Pau on or 020 7634 9582.

To register, please visit the BAM website.