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Title: An assessment of the participatory role of Saudi university academics in organisational decision-making : a single case study
Author: Alsuhaymi, Abdulaziz Abdullah A.
ISNI:       0000 0004 6423 9571
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2017
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There is a growing trend towards participative decision-making leadership in organisations. Inviting members to participate in key organisational decision areas has become a more popular leadership style in recent years (Spillane, 2005). Scholars have argued that empowering staff in decision making has been found useful for both individuals and organisations in terms both of increasing levels of staff satisfaction and motivation and achieving higher performance levels through collaborative decision making (MacBeath, 2005; Harris, 2004; Goleman et al., 2002). Although there are a substantial number of studies on decision making in Western countries (Metheny et al., 2015; Ehara, 1998), very few have explored this subject in the Arab world, and even fewer in the higher education setting in Saudi Arabia. This study extends the work of Alenezi (2013), who only looked at the male context and suggested that further research explore both gender perspectives. Therefore, this study explores the decision-making process in academic departments and the participatory role of male and female academic staff in making departmental decisions in one Saudi Arabian university. A mixed methods design was adopted, in which both qualitative and quantitative data were collected from the staff of two academic departments within the chosen university. Four data collection methods – document analysis, observation, questionnaire and interview – were used, in a partially mixed sequential dominant status design in which minutes from four meetings were analysed and four departmental meetings observed in each department. A total of 53 questionnaires were completed by academic staff , after which 10 semi-structured interviews took place. The data findings suggest that the levels of academic staff participation in departmental decisions were strongly influenced by aspects of organisational and departmental structure and departmental leadership; therefore, academic staff participation was seen as a reaction to leadership influences and other individual factors. The findings also suggest that levels of participation varied among members for several reasons. Based on the research results, enhancing the levels of academic participation may be accomplished by limiting bureaucracy through delegating some responsibilities to appropriate bodies. Furthermore, members who are responsible for managing meetings are advised to attend courses in meeting management skills to ensure equal opportunities, while academic staff, particularly new members, are advised to develop their participation skills.
Supervisor: Wilson, Michael Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available