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Leadership in network learning: business action research at Monash University

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Purpose ‐ The purpose of this paper is to explain the emergent nature of leadership in a university-based learning network of mature-aged practitioner-scholars. Design/methodology/approach ‐ The paper draws on previously published work, interviews, and current research. Findings ‐ The paper finds that once initial structures have been established, the leadership role falls to different members depending on the needs of the group. Intellectual leadership becomes important in this setting. Research limitations/implications ‐ The study is drawn from a single case although supported by research done in a similar group in the UK. Research indicates that cohorts and support networks increase success rates in PhD completions. This paper outlines one example of the structures and processes of a successful one. Practical implications ‐ There is significant leverage for universities in developing the network structures and process, beyond the simple supervisor/student relationship that support doctoral students. It focuses on the contribution a learning network can make to mature-aged part-time students. Originality/value ‐ This paper develops the current literature on supervision of doctoral students.
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Keywords: Action research; Leadership; Learning; Networking

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2010

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