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Journal cover: Education + Training

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Online from: 1959

Subject Area: Education

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Building regional capacity: lessons from Leadership South West

Document Information:
Title:Building regional capacity: lessons from Leadership South West
Author(s):Richard Bolden, (Centre for Leadership Studies, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK), Jackie Bagnall, (School of Business and Economics, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK)
Citation:Richard Bolden, Jackie Bagnall, (2009) "Building regional capacity: lessons from Leadership South West", Education + Training, Vol. 51 Iss: 8/9, pp.635 - 647
Keywords:Government policy, Leadership development, Organizations, Regional development, United Kingdom
Article type:Case study
DOI:10.1108/00400910911005208 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to present experiences and insights from an higher education-led initiative to build leadership capacity within the South West of England in order to the shed light onto the processes and mechanisms of regional capacity building.

Design/methodology/approach – The approach was one of participative action research, whereby the authors were actively involved in the shaping and delivery of the initiative, responding to ongoing feedback and reflection. The account given within this paper is an autoethnographic case study that identifies the main phases and lessons learned from the initiative.

Findings – The paper identifies a number of discrete phases within the initiative, some of the challenges and how they were confronted and concludes with a set of ten principles that may help support regional capacity building initiatives for management and leadership.

Originality/value – Despite increasing emphasis on capacity building and a tendency to promote leadership as a lever for change, limited academic research has been conducted into either of these processes at a regional level. This paper seeks to contribute to both theory and practice in these areas by combining the insights of an academic and a practitioner involved in one such initiative and highlighting the underlying and emergent processes therewith.

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