Strategic leadership within the Duke of Edinburgh's International Award Association between 1988 and 2004

by Andrew, Craig Bruce

Abstract (Summary)
Providing strategic leadership for global Not-for-Profit organisations poses great challenges to the leadership structures of these voluntary organisations. This study looks at the phenomenon of strategic leadership in the Duke of Edinburgh’s (DOE) International Award Association (IAA) as a global Not-for-Profit Organisation (NPO). The main aim of the research was an in-depth examination of the processes involved in leadership at the top level in a global NPO. Eight strategic leaders from the top management team were interviewed. Further information was generated from a study of the Annual Reports spanning the 15 year period (1988/9 – 2003/4), and key strategic documents were used as supporting material. The research was conducted in a phenomenological paradigm, using the case study research method. Care was taken to minimize possible researcher bias and interpretations, as the researcher has been associated with this organisation for the past 18 years. It was found that the Royal Family play extremely valuable and multifaceted roles in the organisation. The triumvirate of The Royals; The Secretary General’s; and The Trustees; works well as individual ‘great groups’ yet when necessary, they form a collective collaborative grouping to effect strategic leadership for the IAA. The two main themes to emerge from the findings were the nature of the DOE as a global NPO and the role of strategic leadership in the DOE Award. The DOE Award has demonstrated that it has many unique strategic leadership features and is using these features to become more business-like in the application of its new strategic vision. The individual ‘great groups’ offer sound leadership throughout the process of overseeing and running the business of the DOE Award yet, when necessary and appropriate, these great groups appear to work collectively, perhaps in an unstructured manner, as the triumvirate of power. Their collective collaborative leadership is a unique feature of the DOE Award. The highly interactive role of the Royal Family is unique and sets the DOE Award apart from other similar youth organisations globally. The nature of the loose association of National Award Authorities all subscribing to the rules and conditions of association is also a very unique feature of this NPO. The DOE Award is not a movement organisation but is guided by its service ethic. The DOE Award is a service organisation in which the strategic leadership plays a crucial role yet the constitutional power resides with the International Award Association membership. This IAA membership meets every three years at the World Forum Triennium to approve all new policy and procedures.
Bibliographical Information:


School:Rhodes University

School Location:South Africa

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:investec business school


Date of Publication:01/01/2005

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