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Frontiers in Educational Research, 2020, 3(14); doi: 10.25236/FER.2020.031424.

Higher Educational Leadership Reform in China -- from Centralisation to Decentralisation: a Case Study of a Democratic Leader


Jia Yu

Corresponding Author:
Jia Yu

University of Birmingham, Birmingham, United Kingdom, B15 2TT


Since the middle of the twentieth century, the Chinese educational system has been severely affected by the traditional dictatorial culture of the government and the hierarchical education system of the Soviet Union, thus forming a centralised, top-down educational system. Li (2012) explains that whilst school leaders are generally not considered to be autonomous, they are essentially autocratic. Due to this paternalistic leadership system students lose the right and ability to learn independently, instead they are trained to study like machines.  In order to inspire  both students’ initiative to learn and their ability to be academically innovative, the Chinese educational leadership model needs urgent change. Therefore, researching and exploring China’s educational leadership reform is not only highly significant now, but can also provide a basis for future reform and development.


Higher leadership reform, Democratic leadership, University management

Cite This Paper

Jia Yu. Higher Educational Leadership Reform in China -- from Centralisation to Decentralisation: a Case Study of a Democratic Leader. Frontiers in Educational Research (2020) Vol. 3 Issue 14: 151-161. https://doi.org/10.25236/FER.2020.031424.


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