Developing the next generation of leaders: A global study of student leadership

Ewan Thomas Mansell WRIGHT, Moosung LEE, Allan David WALKER, Darren Anthony BRYANT, Soobin CHOI, Syeda Kanwal HASSAN

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review


Schools play a crucial role in developing the next generation of leaders. However, most leadership research in schools focuses on adults rather than students. In this article, we apply a reimagined human capital framework to investigate student perspectives on leadership at a global association of elite schools. Based on survey data from 6,760 students in 34 countries and interview data from 93 students in 11 countries, the findings demonstrate student perspectives on leadership, how leadership is developed, and how student leaders can drive social change. First, we discuss how schools can support leadership development by understanding how students conceptualise leadership, promoting an ethos that leadership can be learnt, and providing opportunities for ‘hands-on’ leadership experience. Second, we highlight student views on the social returns of student leadership. Finally, we draw attention to the importance of inclusivity in leadership opportunities. Overall, we underscore the importance of schools expanding student leadership opportunities. Copyright © 2023 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEducational Studies
Early online dateJun 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Jun 2023


Wright, E., Lee, M., Walker, A., Bryant, D., Choi, S., & Hassan, K. (2023). Developing the next generation of leaders: A global study of student leadership. Educational Studies. Advance online publication.


  • Student leadership
  • Skills
  • Student voice
  • Elite schools
  • Round Square


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