n South African Journal of Higher Education - The Janus effect : contradictory demands placed on the academic chairperson
|Article Title||The Janus effect : contradictory demands placed on the academic chairperson|
|© Publisher:||Higher Education South Africa (HESA)|
|Journal||South African Journal of Higher Education|
|Affiliations||1 University of the Free State and 2 University of South Africa|
|Publication Date||Jan 2016|
|Pages||184 - 204|
|Keyword(s)||Academic chairpersons, Academic leadership, Chairperson demands, Challenges of academic chairpersons, Higher education and Roles of academic chairpersons|
The purpose of this article is to gain a deeper understanding of the multidimensional nature and complexity of the challenges academic chairpersons appointed at institutions of higher learning experience. A qualitative research approach was chosen to gain a comprehensive understanding of the phenomenon under investigation by means of a focus group of 24 academic chairpersons. The findings indicate that academic chairpersons are inundated with responsibilities. They have to find a balance between the various roles, responsibilities and tasks originating from two opposing roles - that of scholar versus that of administrator/manager/leader - forced into one, while lacking the necessary administrative/managerial/leadership experience, skills and knowledge for their role as managers. This study provides higher education institutions and role-players responsible for the appointment, support and development of academic chairpersons with the evidence required to substantiate the necessity of redesigning this role.
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