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Webinar: Educational Leadership, Management and Governance

This webinar is the third in a series exploring education in Asia. It will focus on educational leadership, management and governance.

  • 22 Apr 2021, 9.30am to 22 Apr 2021, 11.00am BST (GMT +01:00)
  • This is an online event.
  • This event is free

The Centre for Research in Education in Asia (CREA) at the University of Bath, together with Lingnan University and the University of Durham, are organising a webinar series on the development in education in East Asia.

The series will focus on a variety of development issues and educational topics. These include:

  • educational policy
  • social justice equity in education
  • language education
  • educational leadership


This webinar series aims to share and generate knowledge of the development in education in East Asia. Each webinar will consist of three key presentations on a specific theme, and question and answer discussions. Through webinars, we aim to generate research collaboration ideas and build research teams to apply for funding bids.


  • University of Bath (UK), CREA
  • Lingnan University (HK), Institute of Policy Studies
  • University of Durham (UK), International and Comparative Research Cluster

Leadership Support in Work Transitions of K-12 Teachers due to the COVID-19 Pandemic in China


Yidan Zhu, PhD Research Assistant Professor at Lingnan University. She graduated from the University of Toronto majoring in adult education and community development. She worked as a postdoctoral fellow in the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of British Columbia for three years. Her research focuses on adult education, lifelong learning, professional learning, and immigration studies.

Yuanlu Niu, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Human Resource and Workforce Development at University of Arkansas. She holds a PhD in Education with a concentration in the Workforce Education and Development and an MBA from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Her research focuses on career development, human resource development, and workforce diversity.


The K-12 educators experience transitions in their work due to this pandemic and face challenges, including not only on the aspects of the readjustment on instructional tasks (Wang, 2020) and student engagement (Whittle et al. 2020) but also their work-life balance (Greenhow and Chapman, 2020) and life safety concerns (Will, 2020a).This study explores the challenges of K-12 teachers in work transition due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the impact of educational leadership response on the teachers’ strategies of addressing these challenges in China.

Eight K-12 educators in China were interviewed between November 2020 and January 2021. Guided by the Schlossberg’s 4 S Transition theory, we generated the major themes Situation - unexpected transitions, new work conditions, more workloads, and the need of learning new skills; Self - aging and rural vs. urban; Support - servant leadership, technology support, well-being support, and learning support; Strategies - collaborative learning, on-the-job learning, professional development learning, lifelong learning, and job crafting.

The results of the study could help researchers explore human resource development (HRD) functions in the education sector and further understand the role of HRD in crisis management.

Enabling Leadership in Others for Social Justice and Knowledge Co-creation


Dr Meng Tian is Assistant Professor in Educational Leadership and Management at the University of Bath, UK. Her research interests lie in distributed leadership, social justice leadership, leaders’ and teachers’ professional development, and educational leadership policymaking. She holds an appointment as the Co-Convenor for the Educational leadership network at the European Educational Research Association (EERA) and the Co-Director for the Centre for Research in Education in Asia (CREA) at the University of Bath, UK.

Dr James Underwood is a Principal Lecturer at the University of Northampton where he leads the 'Masters of Arts in Education'. James was a teacher and school leader for 19 years. The majority of this time was in the English state sector, in secondary schools (ages 11-18). He was also the Principal of an international sixth form college (16-18 year olds) for four years. His research interests include: the nature of professional communities, non-positional leadership, and approaches to practitioner research.


In this presentation, we are exploring the up-to-date theoretical development and practices on distributed leadership. Through a critical lens, we argue that distributed leadership has been used as a managerial tool for accomplishing narrowly defined school goals rather than enabling leadership in others for social justice and knowledge co-creation.

A re-theorisation of distributed leadership is needed. Instead of proposing a blueprint for distributed leadership, we believe school leaders are the key agents who create a localised process and resources to enable leadership in others. In this presentation, we propose a practice-informed research approach to replace the traditional research-informed practice approach in leadership research and development.

The changing role of students in higher education governance: Governing with/of data in the digital age


Dr Rille Raaper is an Associate Professor in Sociology of Higher Education and Deputy Director of Research in the School of Education at Durham University. Rille specialises in student identity, experience and agency in marketised higher education settings. She has conducted numerous research projects and published widely in the areas of higher education policy and practice and its impact on students as learners, citizens and political agents.


This presentation problematises the changing role of students in British higher education governance throughout the three societal periods: the welfare state, the market society and the digital economy. The presentation draws on the ongoing conceptual research with Dr Janja Komljenovic from Lancaster University. I will argue that within the past three decades, the student has shifted from a partner with significant involvement in governing universities, to a consumer whose influence reflects in self-interest enacted via choice and consumer rights. The main argument is that the governing role of students is fundamentally tied to the role of the university in the society and prevailing economic order, and it is therefore changing yet again in the new phase of digital economy. The presentation will propose an approach to examine the student role in higher education governance in the new digital economy as ‘governing with data’ and ‘governing of data’. In the first case, students are approached as digital users and data producers to inform university practices. In the second, they are made liable to various user agreements but have no actual influence on decision-making.

CREA webinar three: Educational Leadership, Management and Governance

You are welcome to join our webinar by watching the recorded video.


Speakers from this webinar.


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