1st Edition

Intellectual Leadership in Higher Education Renewing the role of the university professor

By Bruce Macfarlane Copyright 2012
    174 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    174 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    What is ‘intellectual leadership’ and how might this concept be better understood in the modern university? Drawing on research into the role of full or chair professors, this book argues that it is important to define and reclaim intellectual leadership as a counter-weight to the prevailing managerial culture of higher education. It contends that professors have been converted into narrowly defined knowledge entrepreneurs and often feel excluded or marginalised as leaders by their own universities. To fulfil their role professors need to balance the privileges of academic freedom with the responsibilities of academic duty. They exercise their academic freedom as critics and advocates but they also need to be mentors, guardians, enablers and ambassadors. Four orientations to intellectual leadership are identified: knowledge producer, academic citizen, boundary transgressor and public intellectual. These orientations are illustrated by reference to the careers of professors and show how intellectual leadership can be better understood as a transformational activity. This book tackles the question of what intellectual leadership actually is and analyses the questions most frequently associated with the role of senior academics, including:

    • How can intellectual leadership be distinguished from other forms of leadership and management?
    • How can professors balance their responsibilities both within and beyond the university?
    • How can universities make better use of the expertise of professors as leaders?

    It concludes with recommendations for senior institutional managers on how to make more effective use of the expertise and leadership potential of the senior professoriate.

    Part A- Leadership and intellectuals 1. The leadership crisis 2. Beyond the caricature Part B- The entrepreneurial academy 3. The retreat from engagement 4. The corporatization of the research agenda Part C- Freedom and Duty 5. Becoming a Professor 6. Being a Professor 7. Two freedoms 8. Four Duties Part D- Re-engagement 9. Understanding Intellectual Leadership 10. Finding a Moral Compass 11. Reclaiming Professorial Leadership


    Bruce Macfarlane is Associate Professor for Higher Education at the University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.

    'This is a well-written, well-argued book about an under-researched but increasingly important topic.' - Justine Mercer, University of Warwick, UK