‘Leadership is a sacred matter’: Women leaders contesting and contextualising neoliberal meritocracy in the Indonesian academia

Mulya, Teguh Wijaya and Sakhiyya, Zulfa (2020) ‘Leadership is a sacred matter’: Women leaders contesting and contextualising neoliberal meritocracy in the Indonesian academia. Gender and Education.

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Official URL / DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/09540253.2020.1802407


Feminist scholars have critiqued neoliberal meritocracy as discriminating against female academics through the persistence of gender-biased assumptions, closed procedures of recruitment and promotion, and patriarchal network connections. While these scholars demand fairer meritocratic competition, we explore possibilities to (re)imagine academic career and university leadership beyond the dominant discourse of neoliberal meritocracy. Based on interviews with female deans in Indonesian universities, we identified two alternative discourses (in)forming their subjectivity as university leaders, which may both challenge and contextualise neoliberal meritocracy. The first is the Islamic notion of leadership as amanah (God-given responsibility), and the second is a view of university as family. We demonstrate that understanding university leadership through these discourses enables and fosters a sense of trust, nurture, harmony, relationality, and spirituality; which are in contrast with neoliberal meritocracy’s objectivism, individualism, corporatism, and entrepreneurialism. Nevertheless, neoliberal meritocracy is quick to co-opt these contextual ways of being for its neoliberal agenda.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Gender, university leadership, meritocracy, neoliberalism, amanah , Indonesia
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Psychology > Department of Psychology
Depositing User: Teguh Wijaya Mulya205905
Date Deposited: 04 Aug 2020 05:29
Last Modified: 24 Mar 2021 16:25
URI: http://repository.ubaya.ac.id/id/eprint/37963

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