Contextualizing Distributed Leadership Within Early Childhood Education

Current Understandings, Research Evidence and future Challenges

Johanna Heikka*, Manjula Waniganayake, Eeva Hujala

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Citations (Scopus)


This article seeks to establish a new research agenda on distributed leadership by linking early childhood and school leadership research. It begins with a discussion of how distributed leadership is conceptualized, including a discussion of the main features and meanings of distributed leadership as defined by key scholars who have maintained a sustained interest in this topic. It explores theoretical bases underpinning leadership research that have adopted a distributed leadership framework in general and within early childhood education organizations in particular. By critiquing the application of learning derived from school-based research within early childhood settings, this article aims to engage readers across different education sectors to collaborate in reconceptualizing distributed leadership in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)30-44
Number of pages15
JournalEducational Management Administration and Leadership
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2013

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