Lars G. Björk

Lars Bjork

Position: Dr. Björk, PhD, is a professor and Chair of the Department of Educational Leadership Studies at the University of Kentucky. He is a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Jyväskylä, Institute for Educational Leadership, Finland 2009. He holds Ph.D. and Ed. S. Degrees in Educational Administration, a Masters Degree in Public Administration and a Master’s Degree in Secondary Education, as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Education from the University of New Mexico. He served on the faculties of the University of New Mexico, University of South Carolina and, Georgia Southern University.

He has served as the Co-Director of the University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA) Center for the Study of the Superintendency, was the founding Director of the Institution for Educational Research (2004-2007) at the University of Kentucky and is the co-director of the International Symposium on Educational Reform that has convened annual conferences in the USA (2005, 2008), Finland (2006, 2009), Shanghai, China (2007) and is planning a venue in South Africa 2010. In addition, he served as the Executive Assistant to the Director of the National Institute of Education (NIE) in the United States Department of Education), Regional Director for University Research Corporation, and as a senior staff member of Westinghouse Learning Corporation. He has served as a consultant to Universities, school districts, state governments, national associations, foundations and international education agencies. He has been a member of advisory and coordinating committees as well as task forces in the United States Department of Education.

In addition to serving as a Senior Associate Editor of Educational Administration Quarterly Dr. Björk is presently a member of the editorial boards of the South African Journal of Education, Journal of Thought, the Journal of School Public Relations and the Journal of Research on Leadership Education. In addition, he has served as guest editor for special issues including: Education and Urban Society (1993), “Minorities in Higher Education”; Educational Administration Quarterly (2000) “Women in the Superintendency”; and, The Journal of School Leadership (2003), “The Superintendent Shortage: Myth and Reality”. Dr. Björk serves as a peer reviewer for The Journal of Research on Leadership Education, Journal of School Leadership, Journal of Research on Leadership Education (2006) and, Educational Management Administration and Leadership..

He has co-edited several books including Higher Education Research and Public Policy (1988), Minorities in Higher Education (1994), and The New Superintendency: Advances in Research and Theories of School Management and Educational Policy (2001, with C. C. Brunner), and School District Superintendents: Role Expectations, Professional Preparation, and Development (2005) with Theodore Kowalski. In addition, he has co-authored, The Study of the American Superintendency 2000 (2000, with T. Glass and C.C. Brunner), The Superintendent as CEO (2005) with J. Hoyle, T. Glass & L. Collier and co-authored several chapters on leadership and politics (8 & 12) with Theodore Kowalski in his book The School Superintendent: Theory, Practice, and Cases (2005). In addition Dr. Björk has published more than 30 research articles, 36 book chapters and over 100 research papers at national and international conferences. In addition, he has generated more that nearly $6 million in research and development grants.

Tricia Browne-Ferrigno

TriciaBF headshot Small

Dr. Tricia Browne-Ferrigno is an associate professor who joined the University of Kentucky Department of Educational Leadership Studies in August 2001 as a first-year assistant professor. She earned a PhD in Educational Leadership and Innovation from the University of Colorado at Denver, MA in Special Education/Gifted from the University of South Florida, and BA in Secondary Mathematics Education from Florida State University. Dr. Browne-Ferrigno’s current research foci include preservice and continuing leadership preparation, educational reform and school improvement, faculty mentoring in higher education, and the education doctorate.

In addition to her regular responsibilities, she directed two externally-sponsored projects. The Principals Excellence Program, an advanced professional development initiative for administrator-certified educators in Pike County (Kentucky), was supported by a grant from the US Department of Education School Leadership Development Program and is featured in Innovative Pathways to School Leadership and the e-Lead initiative. The Team Development for Instructional Leadership project, an initiative to improve student learning in rural high schools, was supported by a grant from the US Department of Education Teacher Quality Program administered by the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education.

Dr. Browne-Ferrigno currently serves as the Teacher Leadership Program Chair for the Department and member of research team for the Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate (CPED). She served a three-year term as Chair of the AERA Learning and Teaching in Educational Leadership SIG and a yearlong term as Chair of the AERA Leadership for School Improvement SIG. She is a founding member of the UCEA/LTEL-SIG Taskforce on Evaluating Educational Leadership Preparation Programs and a contributor to several SREB School Leadership Curriculum Modules.

She co-edited with Lars Bjork two special issues of the Journal of School Public Relations about school-parent relations in Kentucky and abroad. Dr. Browne-Ferrigno is a member of the Editorial Review Board for the Journal of Research on Leadership Education; peer reviewer for Journal of School Leadership, Leadership and Policy in Schools, and Journal of Teacher Development; and former Associate Editor forEducational Administration Quarterly.

Prior to entering higher education, Dr. Browne-Ferrigno was a teacher leader in secondary mathematics and gifted education at H. B. Plant High School in Tampa, Florida, a twice-recognized US Department of Education Blue Ribbon School of Excellence. From 1991 to 1993 she served as the National Consultant Secondary Mathematics for ScottForesman, providing support for the adoption and implementation of the University of Chicago School Mathematics Project (UCSMP) textbook series.

Wayne Lewis

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Dr. Wayne D. Lewis is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership Studies at the University of Kentucky. Wayne teaches courses in educational leadership, school-community relations, and the politics of education. His current research is in the areas of school-community relations, the politics of education, and school-based leadership. Wayne completed undergraduate studies at Loyola University New Orleans, and completed a teacher education program at the University of New Orleans. He earned an M.A. at the University of Akron in the Department of Public Administration and Urban Studies, and a Ph.D. from North Carolina State University in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.

Olof Johansson

Olof Johansson

Dr. Olof Johansson is professor of political science and chair of the Centre for Principal Development at Umeå University in Sweden. His research interests are school leadership, principal training, school governance, school effectiveness, school improvement and values and ethics in relation to school leadership. He is working four large research projects which all have international counterparts; The International Successful School Principalship Project; Structure, Culture, Leadership: Prerequisites for Successful Schools?; National Policy meets Local Implementation Structures and European Policy Network on School Leadership.

Rika Joubert


Prof. Rika Joubert PhD is an associate professor in the Department of Education Management and Policy Studies at the University of Pretoria and the Director of the Interuniversity Centre for Education Law and Policy (CELP). She is a founding member of the South African Education Law Association. She specialises in school governance, school safety and school discipline and has presented papers at international conferences in the USA., Australia, New Zealand, Europe, England, China, Cyprus and Hong Kong. She teaches education law to education managers at post graduate level. Her publications include books on law in education, school governance and discipline in schools. Rika is a NRF rated researcher and a adjunct professor at the University of Kentucky in the USA..

Jean van Rooyan


Dr Jean W van Rooyen is the Executive Manager of the Inter-University Centre for Education Law, Education Leadership and Education Policy (CELP). He also is a lecturer in the Department of Education Management and Policy Studies of the Faculty of Education at the University of Pretoria where he currently teaches financial management, organisational management and entrepreneurship. He has extensive experience of managing projects nationally and internationally and has been a member of a number of national research teams. He has published in six books and has read numerous papers both nationally and internationally in his fields of specialisation.

JunHua Zhang

Junhua Zhang

Position: PhD, Associate Professor in School of Public Administration East China Normal University (ECNU), Shanghai, Assistant Director of the National Training Centre for Secondary School Principals (NTCSSP), Ministry of Education China.

For several years Dr. Zhang JunHua was a secondary school teacher in Yunnan Province China. He was educated at the School of Education University of Birmingham UK where he completed his PhD in education in 2004. Currently he teaches undergraduate and postgraduate students as well as training secondary school principals from all over China in ECNU/NTCSSP. Courses and lectures he offers are Educational Leadership and Management, Research Methods in Education, International Education etc. He has special research interests in educational leadership and school culture. He has also conducted research projects in secondary schools and consults in schools. He is also a member of the International Advisory Board of Journal of Educational Administration and History.


Selected research papers and works

Ribbins, P. and Zhang, J. (2003a). “Art and Artfulness in Rural China”, Leading and Managing, Vol. 9, No.1, pp 1-16.

Ribbins, P. and Zhang, J. (2003b). “Art and Artistry in The Theory and Practice of Educational Leadership”, ACEL Monograph 33, and also Printed As a Supplement to The Practising Administrator, Vol. 25, No. 4, pp1-16.

Ribbins, P. and Zhang, J. (2004a). “Head teachers in Rural China: Aspects of Ambition”, International Journal of Leadership in Education, Vol.7,No2, pp27-146

Ribbins, P. and Zhang, J. (2005). “Head teachers and Their Exits: Moving on and Moving Out in Chuxiong in Rural China and Elsewhere”.International Studies of Educational Administration .Vol.33.No.3,pp71-84

Ribbins, P. and Zhang, J. (2006). “Culture ,Societal Culture and School Leadership-A Study of Selected Headteachers in Rural China”. International Studies of Educational Administration Vol34.No.1.pp71-88

Zhang, J(2008a) “A Study on the Four Cultures which Influencing School
Improvement and Development”, Research on Education
Development.No 12 ,PP71-74( In Chinese)

Zhang, J(2008b) “A Study on the Leadership Culture which Influencing School Improvement and Development”, Research on Education Development.No 22 ,PP66-70( In Chinese)

Zhang,J(2008c) “Four Spiritual Realms of Education Tolerance” ,China Education Daily June 24 2008. ( In Chinese )

Zhang ,J(2008d) Educational Leadership, Shanghai: East China Normal University Press. (In Chinese)

Director Emeritus

Johan Beckmann

Johan Beckmann

Position: Former professor and Head of the Department of Education Management and Policy Studies at the University of Pretoria, South Africa Johan Beckmann was educated at the University of Potchefstroom, the Rand Afrikaans University and the University of Pretoria where he completed a D Ed degree in 1985. He taught at secondary schools advancing to the level of deputy-principal before he joined the organisations of the teaching profession in 1980. He progressed to the rank of deputy director of the Teachers’ Federal Council before he moved to the University of Pretoria as a full professor in 1992.

Johan teaches at undergraduate and undergraduate level and has supervised more than 20 masters and doctoral candidates. He publishes in the field of educational reform, education law, education policy and leadership. He was the founding chairperson of the South African Education Law Association, the first Director of the Interuniversity Centre for Education Law and Education Policy and a founder member and member of the Executive Committee of the Education Management of South Africa. He holds a medal of honour and the senior researcher medal of the Education Association of South Africa, is a National Research Foundation of South Africa rated researcher, member of three editorial boards of scholarly journals and has been guest editor of three national and international journals on education law and education. Johan has presided over several international and national academic. He is an active researcher and has contributed to more than 10 books as editor, co-author or chapter contributor and has written more than 40 articles in peer-reviewed and other journals.

Director Emeritus

Jukka Alava

Jukka Alava

Jukka Alava is the former Director of The Institute of Educational Leadership in The Univeristy of Jyväskylä. He has earned his Master’s and Licentiate’s degrees in the University of Tampere, Finland. He has also a Master of Science in Management degree form California American University, and he earner his PhD degree in The University of Kentucky in Lexington. In 2008 the president of the University of Jyväskylä awarded him the honorary professorship.

His research interest and focus in training and development are organizational change and learning, strategic change processes, organizational culture and ethics, and leadership development. Together with professor Lars Björk, Jukka is the co-founder of ISER – International Symposium of Educational Reform. He has also served as the co-chair in all of the ISER conferences held since 2005.

Jukka has worked as the president of Paasikivi Community College, director of The Continuing Education Center in The University of Jyväskylä, and as an independent consultant. Jukka Alava has also worked as a professor and lecturer in several universities and he has been a consultant to over 200 of major organizations in Europe, USA, China, Nepal, South-Africa and Chile. He has held several positions of trust in The University of Jyväskylä; chairman of the MBA board, chairman of the PD board, chairman of the council for adult education.

As the CEO and senior consultant of Didactica Consulting he has developed several frameworks, instruments and technologies to be used in training and consulting. These include Learning & Innovation profile, The Leader profile for leadership training, Learning Audit™ development technology to build learning organizations, and Innovation Scorecard to develop individual and organizational learning.

Jukka has published several articles and book chapters especially in developing higher education, managing and leading change in schools. Since 2007, he has been the main lecturer in the international Master’s Degree Program in the University of Jyväskylä, and also the producer and director of the e-learning application of the program leading to a Master in Educational Management and Leadership diploma.