Distributed leadership in practice: evidence, misconceptions and possibilities

Alma Harris, John DeFlaminis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

115 Citations (SciVal)


This article takes a contemporary look at distributed leadership in practice by drawing upon empirical evidence from a large-scale project in the USA. Initially, it considers the existing knowledge base on distributed leadership and questions some of the assertions and assumptions in recent accounts of the literature. The article also addresses some persistent misconceptions associated with the concept of distributed leadership and points out that certain fundamental misunderstandings still prevail. The article concludes by proposing that more evidence from practice would significantly enhance the current evidential base and that the future development of distributed leadership would greatly benefit from more input from practitioners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-146
Number of pages6
JournalManagement in Education
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016


  • Distributed leadership
  • educational innovation
  • school change
  • school improvement and transformation
  • school leadership


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