Strengthening the UK Evidence Base on Management and Leadership Capability

Tamkin P, Denvir A | Research and Evidence Publications URN 06/2117 | Department of Trade and Industry | Oct 2006

Evidence had suggested that compared to its international competitors, the UK was underperforming in terms of management and leadership skills. This implied that an improvement in this area could help to reduce the UK's productivity gap with the US, France and Germany.

But the lack of a measurable framework, and gaps in the available evidence, made it difficult to pinpoint the strengths and weaknesses in the UK's management leadership base.

The Department of Trade and Industry commissioned this report to assess the evidence base on management and leadership, and to make recommendations as to how it could be improved, with a view to designing and shaping policy to improve UK productivity through better management and leadership.

IES spoke with policymakers, employer representative bodies and academics in the field, to identify the key questions on UK management and leadership skills that required answering. A model framework was developed to identify the elements of the chain of impact from management development to organisational performance.

This model was used to critique the evidence base and clarify the gaps, and the existing data sources were mapped against this model to fully understand their current and potential contribution. The options were considered for extending the evidence base in terms of adapting existing surveys and devising a new bespoke survey.