26 SES 03 B, Crossing Perspectives – International Insights into Educational Leadership
Due to globalization processes (Jarvis, 2007)and the modernization of the public sector since the 1980´s (Pedersen, 2004), the Danish School system has been in a period of transistion embedding the public school system in neo-liberal governance and accountability systems(Moos, 2009; Moos, 2016b; Moos, 2017). As part of these transformations processes, the public school system has been introduced to a general reform in 2014, aiming to change the technical core of the education system as both the instructional and pedagogical practices through reforming the governance forms between the public schools and the state(Moos, 2016a). One of the main governing instruments in implementing these changes is educational leadership in the realization of the heightening of the academic results of the students and fulfilling the goals of the public school reform. Educational leadership is on the Danish scientific agenda taking new forms and approaches due to global knowledge solutions travelling across national boundaries.
Theory, aims and objectives
Studies of leadership and management in the public educational sector have been of scientific interest for many years. According to studies of the field as part of the research project “Leadership and management in high achieving schools-an international, comparative perspective”(Jensen, (work in progress)), these studies often takes functional approaches within the framework of transformational and instructional leadership. The aim of these studies is to understand leadership as universal, effective practices and general functionalities primarily studying principal leadership and leadership conducted in formal leadership positions using a quantitative approach. Furthermore, the studies of leadership is predominantly conducted in an anglo-american empirical school context with a few and older findings of the understanding of successful school leadership from the Danish school context. To understand leadership in the educational sector and in high achieving schools, I argue that it is of importance to examine leadership, not only on the basis of the study of leaders in formal positions addressing functional perspectives, but instead as institutionalized leadership processes and organizational phenomena embedded in national, cultural and institutional constituencies using a qualitative and hermeneutic approach. Within this research focus I conduct an international, comparative analysis centered on the following three questions: 1. What characterizes leadership as sensemaking and organizing processes and discursive, relational power in high achieving, public schools in Denmark and Ontario, Canada?
2. What differences and simillaries occurs in an international, comparative analysis of these? And 3, how can we understand the findings of the comparative analysis of similarities and differences as leadership processes and governance in high achieving, public schools constituted within institutional, historical and cultural constituencies.
This processual leadership and organizing focus will contribute to the international knowledgebase on educational leadership with a different approach, also highlighting leadership processes in high achieving schools as relations of power and the high achieving school as a space of institutionalized rationales connected to the surrounding society. Furthermore I take an ethnographic analytical approach(Snow, Morrill, & Anderson, 2003) in the international, comparative study to create a scientific opportunity to refine and develop the theory of leadership as sensemaking and organizing processes(Weick, 1976; Weick, 1995; Weick, Sutcliffe, & Obstfeld, 2005; Weick, 2012). This is done firstly by addressing the theoretical leadership framework into an international, empirical and comparative analytic form, which is a less investigated field of leadership as sensemaking and organizing theory and of educational leadership (Sitkin, 2010). And secondly I seek to refine another less developed perspective of the sensemaking and organizing theory with the theoretical contribution of discursive and relational power (Fairclough, 2001; Foucault, 1982), also a needed contribution in the development of sensemaking theory (Sitkin, 2010).
METHODOLOGY The international comparative case study is embedded within a methodological approach that seeks to balance the epistemological boundaries from the comparative methodologies within comparative sociology (Alexander, 2009; Hantrais, 1999; Rose, 1991; Smelser, 2003). These boundaries seems to delimit the epistemological opportunities of an international comparison in a continuum from a universalistic approach, where the scientific aims is to generate context free sociological universalities. To a culturalistic or relativistic approach with claims of contextbound subjectfields unable to compare in an international scientific approach. To balance these two sociological approaches, the study seeks to establish functional comparability and equivalence in the units of analyses (cases), and in the theoretical concepts and empirical methods used in the qualitative investigations. Furthermore the contextual conditions are taken into consideration by the use of a contextual model that will allow a systematization of contextual elements from both the national and the local context. This systematization of the context will be used in generating the comparative indices and explanations of the findings as similarities and differences. The comparative, case analysis is established within an embedded cross case design using a replication strategy (Yin, 2013). First, the individual case is embedded in its local context and analyzed individually taking a multilevel approach by the use of critical discourse analysis(Fairclough, 2001; Norman, 1992), interaction analysis(Fairclough, 2001; Jordan & Henderson, 1995) and inductive theory building(Gioia, Corley, & Hamilton, 2013). This analytical approach creates a scientific opportunity to understand both how the leadership processes as sensemaking, organizing and discursive power at the intersubjective level of the organizations, is creating the social reality by delimiting the social identity and subject positions, the social relations and the meanings, understandings and rationales of truth in the organization. By connecting this analytical approach with the understandings from the discursive institutionalism(Schmidt, 2008), it becomes scientifically possible to understand the governing meanings, understandings and worldviews in leadership processes in high achieving schools, as constructions that are functioning at the generic, subjective and cultural level of the organization. These constructions can be understood as institutionalized meanings, constituted in overall discourses from national and even global, educational orientations(Moos, 2009; Schmidt, 2008). The findings from the individual case- investigation of leadership processes at a multi-level perspective, are replicated in an international, empirical setting as a cross-case analysis and discussed according to the contextual constituencies of the leadership processes in sustained, high achieving public schools in Denmark and Ontario.
RESULTS Spawned by globalization, educational reform movements and modernization of the public sector, the findings from the first two international cases will address the questions of how the comparative sociology can develop a theoretical understanding of educational leadership, without separating the subject field from the institutional context, in which it is embedded. On the basis of the international comparative analysis of differences and similarities it becomes evident how both leadership and governance in Danish, high achieving schools and in high achieving schools in Ontario, Canada, share discursive aims. But the findings of the qualitative analysis of leadership as a processual and discursive phenomena also shows, that there are differences both in the constructions of social power relations and hierarchical positions between members of the organizations holding formal and non-formal leadership positions. And in the power, and governance forms that are co-constructive of the institutionalized leadership processes. The international, comparative analysis will also give qualitative insights into the understanding of educational leadership processes as both constitutive for- and constituted in local, national and even transnational discourses as part of wider global tendencies. This will create a scientific opportunity to critically asses the effects of transnational and global knowledge solutions and discourses as global rationales of truth on the constructions of the social reality in both the Danish,- and the Ontario school context. Finally the international, comparative and qualitative analysis will result in new, sociological understandings of organizing and sensemaking theory and theory of discursive power in the refinement and development of the two perspectives. This will enable a discussion of the balance between the social as constructed and/or a as a reproduction of the existing, social order with the perspectives from new-institutionalism and post-structural theory of power.
Alexander, R. (2009). Towards a comparative pedagogy. International handbook of comparative education (pp. 923-939) Springer. Fairclough, N. (2001). Language and power Pearson Education. Foucault, M. (1982). The subject and power. Critical Inquiry, 8(4), 777-795. Gioia, D. A., Corley, K. G., & Hamilton, A. L. (2013). Seeking qualitative rigor in inductive research: Notes on the gioia methodology. Organizational Research Methods, 16(1), 15-31. Hantrais, L. (1999). Contextualization in cross-national comparative research. International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 2(2), 93-108. Jarvis, P. (2007). Globalization, lifelong learning and the learning society: Sociological perspectives Routledge. Jensen, M. S. ((work in progress)). Leadership and governance in high achieving schools. An international, comparative casestudie of dicursive sensemakingprocesses in Denmark and Ontario, Canada. Århus Universitet Jordan, B., & Henderson, A. (1995). Interaction analysis: Foundations and practice. The Journal of the Learning Sciences, 4(1), 39-103. Moos, L. (2009). Hard and soft governance: The journey from transnational agencies to school leadership. European Educational Research Journal, 8(3), 397-406. Moos, L. (2016a). ” Pædagogisk ledelse i en læringsmålstyret skole? Hans Reitzels Forlag, Moos, L. (2016b). Denmark: Danish school leadership between welfare and competition. A decade of research on school principals (pp. 13-38) Springer. Moos, L. (Ed.). (2017). Dannelse. kontekster, visioner, temaer og processer. Copenhagen: Hans Reitzels Forlag. doi:9788741269900 Norman, F. (1992). Discourse and social change. Cambridge: Polity, , 7. Pedersen, D. (2004). Ledelsesrummet i managementstaten. Pedersen (Red).Offentlig Ledelse i Managementstaten.København: Samfundslitteratur, Rose, R. (1991). Comparing forms of comparative analysis Wiley-Blackwell. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=afh&AN=21483083&site=ehost-live Schmidt, V. A. (2008). Discursive institutionalism: The explanatory power of ideas and discourse. Annual Review of Political Science, 11 Sitkin, S. B. (2010). Chapter 27 sense-making in organizational research. Stanford's organization theory renaissance, 1970–2000 (pp. 409-418) Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Smelser, N. J. (2003). On comparative analysis, interdisciplinarity and internationalization in sociology. International Sociology, 18(4), 643-657. Snow, D. A., Morrill, C., & Anderson, L. (2003). Elaborating analytic ethnography: Linking fieldwork and theory. Ethnography, 4(2), 181-200. Weick, K. E. (1976). Educational organizations as loosely coupled systems. Administrative Science Quarterly, , 1-19. Weick, K. E. (1995). Sensemaking in organizations Sage. Weick, K. E. (2012). Making sense of the organization, volume 2: The impermanent organization John Wiley & Sons. Weick, K. E., Sutcliffe, K. M., & Obstfeld, D. (2005). Organizing and the process of sensemaking. Organization Science, 16(4), 409-421. Yin, R. K. (2013). Case study research: Design and methods Sage publications.
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Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
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