Cultivating brave spaces for diverse academic women in higher education leadership

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Dixon, Sandra
Batta, Millie
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Diverse women continue to be unrepresented in academia. Institutional structures and governance are strongly influenced by Eurocentric and androcentric worldviews. These ideologies construct, maintain, and legitimize biases, affecting the career progression of diverse academic women in senior leadership positions. This paper uses the intersectional theoretical framework (ITF) to inform how salient aspects of identity, such as race and gender, impact the lived experiences of diverse academic women (DAW). We draw from both empirical and conceptual discussions in the education, gender, and leadership literature to analyze relevant areas, such as the internal silencing of DAW and the need for us to move beyond inclusion to expansion in higher education. Attention is given to topical discourse surrounding gender and publication, conflict management, stereotypes, and cultural safety relative to DAW. Next, a discussion of the critiques and gaps in the academic literature is provided. Further, the Awareness, Rationale, and Choices (ARC) model highlights how leadership may be re-imagined by addressing matters of equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) within academic institutions. The article concludes with the need to cultivate brave spaces in higher education leadership structures, whereby DAW can nurture their intersected identitie
Academic leadership , Diverse academic women (DAW) , Awareness, Rationale, and Choices (ARC) model , Equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) , Intersectional theoretical framework (ITF) , Higher education
Dixon, S., & Batta, M. (2024, March 1-3). Cultivating brave spaces for diverse academic women in higher education leadership. [Paper presentation]. 15th Women's Leadership and Empowerment Conference, Bangkok, Thailand.