Presenters Biography

Samantha Carruthers

Samantha Carruthers is a Senior Consultant - Leadership for Learning at Griffith University’s Learning Futures.  She is a psychologist, specialising in group and organisational change, with over 20 years’ experience in community-based, not-for profit and government organisations. Her current practice focuses on activating shared leadership in complex systems, for transformational change. She applies action research methods, with current projects delivering organisational culture change and leadership development. She also enjoys teaching an educational leadership and innovation course. 

Louise Maddock

Louise Maddock is a Senior Learning and Teaching Consultant in the Centre for Learning Futures at Griffith University.  She is a member of the Griffith Institute for Educational Research and is currently completing her PhD studies using practice theory to explore the leading of program-level educational transformations in higher education.  Louise lectures in the Graduate Certificate of Higher Education, facilitates professional learning programs for educators, course convenors and program directors and leads action research projects focusing on curriculum transformation and leadership development. 



Committed to building leadership for learning, Griffith has focused on developing Program Director role, to enhance program (degree) quality and to strengthen organisational leadership.  Since 2014, a program of activities has shifted the program leaders’ identity from being an administrator and coordinator to being a director and leader.  

This presentation will briefly describe the approach taken to facilitate this identity shift and then shares lessons learnt.  The theme for discussion relates to identity - the challenge of claiming recognition as leader, within a system where leadership is distributed. “How can I say I led (that) when it was a team effort?”. “Who am I to put my hand up and say my leadership resulted in (that particular outcome).” For some, claiming leadership feels contradictory to their values of collegiality.  It challenges their academic identity.  Such intrapersonal conflict can be a barrier for leaders’ development, recognition and progression.   

Discussing this theme goes towards understanding how to frame and articulate leaders’ contributions to shared learning and teaching outcomes, within a distributed system, in order to strengthen the identity of learning and teaching leaders.