New look leaders or a new look at leadership?

Scott Eacott (School of Education, The University of Newcastle, Callaghan, Australia)

International Journal of Educational Management

ISSN: 0951-354X

Publication date: 22 February 2011



This paper seeks to take up the challenge of complex social, political and cultural influences, uncertain economic conditions, ever advancing technologies and increasingly diverse student populations. The challenge for educational leadership scholars and practitioners is to figure out what their work as leaders should be in new times. The paper aims to discuss the issues.


Drawing loosely on the theoretical work of Pierre Bourdieu, and a continued research agenda, this paper outlines a framework for educational leadership that can be measured, but is not prescriptive.


The central argument of this paper is that viewing leadership as a complex social activity that is not directly observable has the prospect of moving scholarship and understanding beyond the superficial measurement of what is directly observed to a thick description of educational leadership.


The framework presented privileges the philosophical and scholarly elements of being an educational leader over the administrative and managerial. It is argued that this is what is needed in the leadership of educational institutions for the future and a framework for preparing the next generation of leaders.



Eacott, S. (2011), "New look leaders or a new look at leadership?", International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 25 No. 2, pp. 134-143.

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Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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