Transformational leadership and human capital within the disruptive business environment of academia

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Ayman Abu-Rumman


Abstract Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of transformational leadership on the cultivation of human capital in an academic setting from the perspective of university employees Design/methodology/approach – Quantitative data was collected from a range of staff working within three universities located in Jordan using an online questionnaire survey. The focus was on identifying which factors of transformational leadership were perceived as having the greatest potential contribution towards developing human capital and if there was a consensus amongst staff about these factors Results – 131 staff members submitted a completed questionnaire giving a response rate of 93%. Respondents generally had a good understanding of the concepts of human capital and transformational leadership, but the way in which transformational leadership was perceived to impact on human capital differed. Conclusion – Overall, the findings from the survey, consistent with other similar studies, confirmed that there was a correlation between transformational leadership and human capital in the context of academia from the perspective of staff. Research limitations/implications – The study confirms the need for leaders in academia to consider the leadership approach that is adopted to ensure that human capital, which is one of its main assets, is supported and developed appropriately Practical implications – The paper describes implications for leaders in higher education, as well as more broadly for educators who are attempting to develop human capital in their organisations Originality/value – This paper expands upon a developing field in leadership in higher education


Keywords: Transformational Leadership; Human Capital; Academia; Disruptive Business Environment


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Abu-Rumman, A. (2021). Transformational leadership and human capital within the disruptive business environment of academia. World Journal on Educational Technology: Current Issues, 13(2), 178–187.