Đurović, T. (2022). Leading a scientific group while holding a transpersonal perspective: A constructivist grounded theory study [Unpublished Master’s thesis]. Alef Trust & Liverpool John Moores University.

Scientific leadership in mainstream academic circles plays a crucial role in the scientific advancement, yet it seems to be in crisis. Therefore, this study aimed to explore and understand how scientific leaders, who hold a transpersonal perspective (i.e., post-materialist, spiritual, contemplative…), approach leadership, interpersonal and team dynamics, and the challenges they cope with in their daily lives. The main research question was: What are the values, attitudes, and practices of scientific leaders who hold a transpersonal perspective, and how is this perspective informing their leadership style? Constructivist grounded theory by Charmaz (2006, 2014) was used to analyze 6 semi-structured interviews with scientific leaders holding a transpersonal perspective. Findings suggested that main themes fell into 4 areas of participants life: Person, Role (as a Leader), Environment and Transpersonal Approach. Six major themes or categories emerged within those areas: Never aspiring to be a leader and not identifying as one; Prioritizing caring relations, Choosing distinct personality traits in new students/team-members (over intellectual capacity); Ensuring wellbeing of individuals as well as collective; Pervasive egoism in academic circles; and Spiritual practice positively affecting leadership. Findings suggested that transpersonal inspiration served as a guiding light for the values, attitudes and practices of participants in this study. The hope for this study is to fill the existing gap in the literature, since there is a lack of empirical studies looking at the real-life experience of leaders inspired by a transpersonal perspective and possibly enable future comparisons with the mainstream scientific leadership currently predominating in our academic institutions.

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