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Educational Research for Social Change

versão On-line ISSN 2221-4070


SCHNEPFLEITNER, Frances Maureen  e  FERREIRA, Marco Paulo Mala. A Leadership Development Programme: A Case Study of Transformative Learning in Qatar. Educ. res. soc. change [online]. 2021, vol.10, n.2, pp.1-17. ISSN 2221-4070.

Leadership development is an important issue for Qatar as it strives to achieve the ambitious goals set out in its 2030 National Vision (Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics, 2015). Various resources are being invested, but often with minimal results, forcing Qatar to continue to rely on expatriate expertise. Transformative learning experiences that change the deeply held beliefs, worldviews, and frames of reference of what it means to be a 21st century leader in Qatar are needed. This paper presents the case study of an executive leadership development programme to identify key success factors or inhibitors that fostered or hindered transformative learning experiences. It includes in-depth interviews conducted over a 10-month period during 2015. Additional rich data of the participants' experiences were obtained from their blogs, written assignments, and organisational documentation. A thematic analysis identified 11 themes, the inclusion of which fostered transformative learning or, the absence of which, hindered transformative learning: (1) identifying stakeholder expectations, (2) conducting a respected selection process, (3) appropriate English levels, (4) alignment between content and the participant's educational and cognitive skills, (5) time and commitment allocated to a well-structured pre-programme and a (6) post-programme stage, (7) in-depth awareness of the participants' professional and cultural contexts, (8) inclusion of autonomous components, (9) inclusion of personal and cultural interactions, (10) an acceptable balance of travel, stress, uncertainty, and course intensity, and (11) a group dynamic. There were indications the intensity of the programme pushed the participants beyond the required state of disorientation necessary for transformative learning and into one of being overwhelmed and stressed.

Palavras-chave : transformative learning; leadership development; case study; discourse; critical reflection; lived experience.

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