Scott Eacott

Director, Higher Research Degrees
Associate Professor

Although A/Prof Eacott has published a number of papers on educational leadership theory and leadership preparation and development, his main research effort has concerned the systematic development of a relational research program. This relatively new theoretical approach for organizational theory in education offers a methodological framework for the study of the social world. It provides a means to frame scholarly inquiry and structure an argument in a thesis, paper, book, or conference paper. Built on a very Bourdieusian craft of scholarship, but without any great loyalty or reverence, the relational approach comprises five relational extensions:

  • The centrality of 'organizing' in the social world creates an ontological complicity in researchers (and others) that makes it difficult to epistemologically break from ordinary language;
  • Rigorous (social) scientific inquiry calls into question the very foundations of popular labels such as 'the organization', 'leadership', 'management', and 'administration';
  • Contemporary spatio-temporal conditions cannot be separated from the ongoing, and inexhaustible, recasting of organizing activity;
  • Foregrounding social relations enables the overcoming of the contemporary, and arguably enduring, analytical dualism of individualism/holism, universal/particular, and structure/agency; and
  • In doing so, there is a productive space - rather than merely critical - space to theorize organizing.

New to the relational research program? An introductory overview can be found in chapter two of the new edited collection by Gabriele Lakomski, Scott Eacott, and Colin Evers (2017) Questioning leadership: new directions for educational organizations (London: Routledge). Additionally, this paper provides a useful overview: Eacott, S. (2016). Methodological notes on the study of educational leadership relationally. Journal of Educational Administration and Foundations, 25(2), 3-14.

The first book length treatment of the relational approach is A/Prof Eacott's Educational leadership relationally (2015, Sense). The most comprehensive overview appears in Beyond leadership: a relational approach to organizational theory in education (2018, Springer). Check out my publications for many other papers and chapters using the relational approach. Ongoing work is currently being articulated in conference papers and empirical projects and will be published shortly.

Using the relational approach in your dissertation, thesis, or a paper? A/Prof Eacott has developed an indicative guideline for structuring your writing. See here.

Publications

Books
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Eacott S, 2017, Beyond Leadership A Relational Approach to Organizational Theory in Education, Springer
2017
Eacott S; Evers C, 2016, New Directions in Educational Leadership Theory
2016
Eacott S, 2015, Educational leadership relationally: A theory and methodology for educational leadership, management and administration,
2015
Eacott S, 2011, Educational leadership and strategy in managerialist times,
2011
Eacott S, 2011, Educational leadership and strategy in managerialist times,
2011
Eacott S, 2009, The strategic leadership of public school principals: An Australian study
2009
Eacott S, 2009, The strategic leadership of public school principals: An Australian study
2009
Book Chapters
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Eacott S, 2018, 'Beyond the normative: Theorising maladministration relationally', in International Perspectives on Maladministration in Education: Theories, Research, and Critiques, pp. 79 - 92,
2018
Eacott S; Niesche R, 2018, 'The Principal and School Improvement Theorising Discourse, Policy, and Practice Series Editors' Foreword', in , SPRINGER-VERLAG SINGAPORE PTE LTD, pp. V - VII
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Relations, organising, leadership and education', in The Palgrave Handbook of Relational Sociology, pp. 641 - 661,
2018
Wilkinson J; Eacott S; Niesche R, 2018, 'Challenges for public education: Perils and possibilities for educational leadership, policy and social justice', in Wilkinson J; Niesche R; Eacott S (ed.), , Routledge, Abingdon, Oxon, pp. 1 - 15
2018
Wilkinson J; Eacott S; Niesche R, 2018, 'Challenges for public education: Perils and possibilities for educational leadership, policy and social justice', in Wilkinson J; Niesche R; Eacott S (ed.), Challenges for public education: Reconceptualising educational leadership, policy and social justice as resources for hope, Routledge, Abingdon, Oxon, pp. 1 - 15,
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Empowering educators through flipped school leadership?', in Netolicky DM; Andrews J; Paterson C (ed.), Flip the System Australia: What Matters in Education, Routledge, London, pp. 189 - 197,
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Educational leadership research and the dismantling of public education', in Wilkinson J; Niesche R; Eacott S (ed.), , Routledge, London, pp. 44 - 56,
2018
Eacott S; Niesche R, 2018, 'The Principal and School Improvement Theorising Discourse, Policy, and Practice Series Editors' Foreword', in PRINCIPAL AND SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT: THEORISING DISCOURSE, POLICY, AND PRACTICE, edn. Educational Leadership Theory, SPRINGER-VERLAG SINGAPORE PTE LTD, pp. V - VII,
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Empowering educators through flipped school leadership?', in Netolicky DM; Andrews J; Paterson C (ed.), , Routledge, London, pp. 189 - 197,
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Educational leadership research and the dismantling of public education', in Wilkinson J; Niesche R; Eacott S (ed.), Challenges for public education: Reconceptualising educational leadership, policy and social justice as resources for hope, edn. Local/Global Issues in Education, Routledge, London, pp. 44 - 56,
2018
Lakomski G; Evers CW; Eacott S, 2017, 'The future of leadership: New directions for leading and learning', in Lakomski G; Eacott S; Evers CW (ed.), Questioning leadership: new directions for educational organisations, Routledge, London, pp. 178 - 191,
2017
Eacott S, 2017, 'Beyond leadership: towards a ‘relational’ way of thinking', in Lakomski G; Eacott S; Evers CW (ed.), Questioning leadership: new directions for educational organisations, Routledge, London, pp. 17 - 30,
2017
Eacott S, 2016, 'Demythologising ‘leadership’: The Trojan horse of managerialism', in Samier E (ed.), Ideologies in Educational Administration and Leadership, Routledge, New York, NY, pp. 159 - 175,
2016
Eacott S, 2016, 'Performance + leadership: Shifting institutional research performance', in Advances in Educational Administration, pp. 177 - 194,
2016
Lakomski G; Evers CW, 2016, 'Challenging leadership: The issues', in Questioning Leadership: New Directions for Educational Organisations, pp. 3 - 16,
2016
Eacott S, 2016, 'Sociological approaches to educational administration', in Peters M (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Educational Philosophy and Theory, Springer, Singapore, pp. 1 - 6,
2016
Eacott S, 2016, 'Demythologising 'leadership': The Trojan Horse of managerialism', in Ideologies in Educational Administration and Leadership, pp. 159 - 175,
2016
Eacott S, 2015, 'Mobilizing bourdieu to think anew about educational leadership research', in Theory as Method in Research: On Bourdieu, Social Theory and Education, pp. 117 - 131,
2015
Eacott S, 2014, 'Disruptions in production: Seeding the practice of questioning', in Ed.D. Programs as Incubators for Social Justice Leadership, pp. 1 - 13,
2014
Eacott S, 2014, 'Sociological approaches to educational administration and leadership', in Educational Administration and Leadership: Theoretical Foundations, pp. 173 - 185,
2014
Eacott S, 2013, 'Research as a political practice: the fallacy of data speaking for themselves', in Eacott S; Niesche R (ed.), Empirical leadership research: letting the data speak for themselves, Untested Ideas Center, Niagara Falls, pp. 215 - 229
2013
Eacott S; Niesche R, 2013, 'Empirical leadership research: letting the data speak for themselves', in Eacott S; Niesche R (ed.), Empirical leadership research: letting the data speak for themselves, Untested Ideas Center, Niagara Falls,, pp. 1 - 14
2013
Bates RJ; Eacott S, 2009, 'Teaching educational leadership and administration in Australia', in Gunter H; Fitzgerald T (ed.), Educational administration and history: The state of the field, Routledge, London, pp. 69 - 80
2009
Conference Presentations
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Eacott S, 2019, 'Recasting the image of ‘the school’ through a relational analysis', presented at The 88th Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, 01 - 07 June 2019
2019
Eacott S, 2019, 'Overcoming substantialism through methodology not methods', presented at The 88th Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, 01 - 07 June 2019
2019
Eacott S, 2018, 'Beyond leadership: a relational approach to organizations', presented at XIX International Sociological Association World Congress of Sociology, Toronto, Canada, 15 - 21 July 2018
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Twitter tagging cartels, social science Kardashians, and the cult of the guru', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 02 - 06 December 2018
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Educational leadership researchers, (social) scientific credibility, and the Kardashian index', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 02 - 06 December 2018
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Empowering educators through flipped school leadership', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 02 - 06 December 2018
2018
Eacott S, 2017, 'Beyond leadership: a relational approach to organizational theory in education', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education, Canberra, Australia, 03 - 07 December 2017
2017
Eacott S, 2017, 'Ranting, raving and complaining: reflections on speaking outside the orthodoxy', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education, Canberra, Australia, 03 - 07 December 2017
2017
Moses J; Eacott S, 2017, 'A case study of principals' experiences of time', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 03 - 07 December 2017
2017
Eacott S; Stemler S, 2017, 'Principals' exepriences of temporality', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 03 - 07 December 2017
2017
Stemler S; Eacott S, 2017, 'The Principals Experiencing Time (PET) work: project design', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 03 - 07 December 2017
2017
Eacott S, 2017, 'The Principals' Experiencing Time (PET) work: theoretical resources', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 03 - 07 December 2017
2017
Eacott S, 2016, 'Theoretical notes on a relational approach to principals' time use', presented at American Educational Research Association - Principals' Time Use, Canberra, Australia, 31 July - 03 August 2016
2016
Eacott S, 2016, 'Sketching a relational approach to principals' time use', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Melbourne, Victoria, 27 November - 01 December 2016
2016
Eacott S, 2016, 'Outlining the research design of a relational project on principals' time use', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Fremantle, Western Australia, 27 November - 01 December 2016
2016
Eacott S, 2016, 'Problems and possibilities of a relational approach', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 27 November - 01 December 2016
2016
Eacott S; Hayes P, 2015, 'Building professional learning networks virtually: the growth of #acelchat', presented at Australian Council for Educational Leaders Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 30 September - 02 October 2015
2015
Eacott S, 2015, 'We need to talk about 'leadership'', presented at Australian Council for Educational Leadership Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 30 September - 02 October 2015
2015
Eacott S, 2015, 'Thinking beyond 'leadership': towards a relational approach', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Fremantle, Western Australia, 29 November - 03 December 2015
2015
Eacott S, 2015, 'Debunking 'leadership' through theory', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Fremantle, Western Australia, 29 November - 03 December 2015
2015
Eacott S, 'Empowering educators through flipped school leadership', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 02 December 2018 - 06 December 2018
Eacott S, 'We need to talk about 'leadership'', presented at Australian Council for Educational Leadership Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 30 September 2015 - 02 October 2015
Eacott S, 'Recasting the image of ‘the school’ through a relational analysis', presented at The 88th Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, 01 June 2019 - 07 June 2019
Eacott S, 'Thinking beyond 'leadership': towards a relational approach', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Fremantle, Western Australia, 29 November 2015 - 03 December 2015
Eacott S, 'Overcoming substantialism through methodology not methods', presented at The 88th Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, 01 June 2019 - 07 June 2019
Eacott S, 'Debunking 'leadership' through theory', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Fremantle, Western Australia, 29 November 2015 - 03 December 2015
Eacott S, 'Theoretical notes on a relational approach to principals' time use', presented at American Educational Research Association - Principals' Time Use, Canberra, Australia, 31 July 2016 - 03 August 2016
Eacott S, 'Sketching a relational approach to principals' time use', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Melbourne, Victoria, 27 November 2016 - 01 December 2016
Eacott S, 'Outlining the research design of a relational project on principals' time use', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Fremantle, Western Australia, 27 November 2016 - 01 December 2016
Eacott S, 'Problems and possibilities of a relational approach', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 27 November 2016 - 01 December 2016
Eacott S, 'Beyond leadership: a relational approach to organizational theory in education', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education, Canberra, Australia, 03 December 2017 - 07 December 2017
Eacott S, 'Ranting, raving and complaining: reflections on speaking outside the orthodoxy', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education, Canberra, Australia, 03 December 2017 - 07 December 2017
Moses J; Eacott S, 'A case study of principals' experiences of time', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 03 December 2017 - 07 December 2017
Eacott S; Stemler S, 'Principals' exepriences of temporality', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 03 December 2017 - 07 December 2017
Stemler S; Eacott S, 'The Principals Experiencing Time (PET) work: project design', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 03 December 2017 - 07 December 2017
Eacott S, 'The Principals' Experiencing Time (PET) work: theoretical resources', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Canberra, Australia, 03 December 2017 - 07 December 2017
Eacott S, 'Beyond leadership: a relational approach to organizations', presented at XIX International Sociological Association World Congress of Sociology, Toronto, Canada, 15 July 2018 - 21 July 2018
Eacott S, 'Twitter tagging cartels, social science Kardashians, and the cult of the guru', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 02 December 2018 - 06 December 2018
Eacott S, 'Educational leadership researchers, (social) scientific credibility, and the Kardashian index', presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 02 December 2018 - 06 December 2018
Eacott S; Hayes P, 'Building professional learning networks virtually: the growth of #acelchat', presented at Australian Council for Educational Leaders Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, 30 September 2015 - 02 October 2015
Edited Books
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Wilkinson J; Niesche R; Eacott S, (eds.), 2018, Challenges for public education: Reconceptualising educational leadership. policy and social justice as resources for hope, Routledge, Abingdon, Oxon,
2018
Lakomski G; Eacott S; Evers CW, (eds.), 2017, Questioning Leadership, Routledge, UK
2017
Eacott S; Evers CW, (eds.), 2016, New Directions in Educational Leadership Theory, Routledge, UK
2016
Journal articles
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Eacott S, 2019, 'Regional secondary school consolidation: A rationale and study protocol', Issues in Educational Research, vol. 29, pp. 678 - 694,
2019
Eacott S, 2019, 'The problems and possibilities of the relational approach: An introduction to the special issue', Research in Educational Administration and Leadership, vol. 4, pp. 1 - 14,
2019
Eacott S, 2019, 'Starting points for a relational approach to organizational theory: An overview', Research in Educational Administration and Leadership, vol. 4, pp. 16 - 45,
2019
Eacott S, 2019, 'The relational approach and social epistemology in educational leadership: A rejoinder', Research in Educational Administration and Leadership, vol. 4, pp. 166 - 193,
2019
Eacott S, 2019, 'Regional secondary school consolidation: theorizing an innovative model', Discourse,
2019
Eacott S, 2019, 'Regional secondary school consolidation: theorizing an innovative model', Discourse,
2019
Eacott S, 2018, 'Social epistemology and the theory turn: a response to Niesche', Journal of Educational Administration and History, vol. 50, pp. 316 - 324,
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Theoretical notes on a relational approach to principals’ time use', Journal of Educational Administration and History, vol. 50, pp. 284 - 298,
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Fluctuations in value: the shifting worth of journal articles in educational administration', Critical Studies in Education, vol. 59, pp. 187 - 203,
2018
Eacott S, 2018, 'Ranting, raving and complaining: reflections on working against orthodoxy', International Journal of Leadership in Education,
2018
Eacott S, 2017, 'School leadership and the cult of the guru: the neo-Taylorism of Hattie', School Leadership and Management, vol. 37, pp. 413 - 426,
2017
Eacott S, 2017, 'A social epistemology for educational administration and leadership', Journal of Educational Administration and History, vol. 49, pp. 196 - 214,
2017
Eacott S, 2016, 'Advancing the Relational Research Program', Journal of Educational Administration and Foundations, vol. 25, pp. 59 - 70,
2016
Asuga G; Scevak J; Eacott S, 2016, 'Educational leadership, management and administration in Africa: an analysis of contemporary literature', School Leadership and Management, vol. 36, pp. 1 - 20,
2016
Eacott S, 2016, 'Methodological Notes on the Study of Educational Leadership Relationally', Journal of Educational Administration and Foundations, vol. 25, pp. 3 - 14,
2016
Asuga GN; Scevak J; Eacott S, 2016, 'Bringing a ‘Local’ Voice to a ‘Universal’ Discourse: School Leadership Preparation and Development in Kenya', International Studies in Educational Administration, vol. 44, pp. 25 - 39
2016
Eacott S, 2015, 'The principalship, autonomy, and after', Journal of Educational Administration and History,
2015
Eacott S, 2015, 'Problematising the Intellectual Gaze of the Educational Administration Scholar', Educational Philosophy and Theory, vol. 47, pp. 312 - 329,
2015
Eacott S; Evers C, 2015, 'New Frontiers in Educational Leadership, Management and Administration Theory', Educational Philosophy and Theory, vol. 47, pp. 307 - 311,
2015
Asuga G; Eacott S; Scevak J, 2015, 'School leadership preparation and development in Kenya evaluating performance impact and return on leadership development investment', International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 29, pp. 355 - 367,
2015
Eacott S, 2015, 'The principalship, autonomy, and after', Journal of Educational Administration and History, vol. 47, pp. 414 - 431,
2015
Eacott S; Asuga GN, 2014, 'School leadership preparation and development in Africa: A critical insight', Educational Management Administration and Leadership, vol. 42, pp. 919 - 934,
2014
Eacott S; Norris J, 2014, 'Managerial Rhetoric, Accountability, and School Leadership in Contemporary Australia', Leadership and Policy in Schools, vol. 13, pp. 169 - 187,
2014
Eacott S; Hodges K, 2014, 'The generative temporality of teaching under revision', Critical Studies in Education, vol. 55, pp. 289 - 302,
2014
Eacott S, 2013, '"Leadership" and the social: Time, space and the epistemic', International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 27, pp. 91 - 101,
2013
Eacott S, 2013, 'Rethinking 'leadership' in education: A research agenda', Journal of Educational Administration and History, vol. 45, pp. 113 - 125,
2013
Eacott S, 2013, 'Towards a theory of school leadership practice: A Bourdieusian perspective', Journal of Educational Administration and History, vol. 45, pp. 174 - 188,
2013
Wilkinson J; Eacott S, 2013, 'Outsiders within? Deconstructing the educational administration scholar', International Journal of Leadership in Education, vol. 16, pp. 191 - 204,
2013
Wilkinson J; Eacott S, 2013, 'These disruptive times: Rethinking critical educational leadership', International Journal of Leadership in Education, vol. 16, pp. 135 - 138,
2013
Eacott S, 2013, 'The return on school leadership preparation and development programmes: A study on Australian university-based programmes', International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 27, pp. 686 - 699,
2013
Eacott S, 2012, 'Introducing undergraduate students to school leadership concepts', Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 50, pp. 159 - 172,
2012
Eacott S, 2012, 'Australian educational leadership today', AUSTRALIAN EDUCATIONAL RESEARCHER, vol. 39, pp. 385 - 387,
2012
Scott Eacott , 2012, 'Exploring the leadership practice of school leaders: A pilot study', International Journal of Educational Administration and Policy Studies, vol. 4,
2012
Eacott S, 2011, 'New look leaders or a new look at leadership?', International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 25, pp. 134 - 143,
2011
Eacott S, 2011, 'The pendulum swings: transforming school reform', JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL ADMINISTRATION AND HISTORY, vol. 43, pp. 85 - 86,
2011
Eacott S, 2011, 'Leadership strategies: Re-conceptualising strategy for educational leadership', School Leadership and Management, vol. 31, pp. 35 - 46,
2011
Eacott S, 2011, 'Erratum: Bourdieu's Strategies and the challenge for educational leadership (International Journal of Leadership in Education (2003) 6:4)', International Journal of Leadership in Education, vol. 14, pp. 127,
2011
Eacott S, 2011, 'Preparing 'educational' leaders in managerialist times: An Australian story', Journal of Educational Administration and History, vol. 43, pp. 43 - 59,
2011
Eacott S, 2011, 'New look leaders or a new look at leadership?', Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 35, pp. 134 - 143,
2011
Eacott DS, 2010, 'Tenure, functional track and strategic leadership', International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 24,
2010
Eacott S, 2010, 'Tenure, functional track and strategic leadership', International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 24, pp. 448 - 458,
2010
Eacott S, 2010, 'Studying school leadership practice: A methodological discussion', Issues in Educational Research, vol. 20, pp. 220 - 233
2010
Eacott S, 2010, 'Bourdieu's strategies and the challenge for educational leadership', International Journal of Leadership in Education, vol. 13, pp. 265 - 281,
2010
Eacott S, 2009, 'Passionate leadership in education', ISSUES IN EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH, vol. 19, pp. 79 - 81,
2009
Eacott S, 2008, 'An analysis of contemporary literature on strategy in education', International Journal of Leadership in Education, vol. 11, pp. 257 - 280,
2008
Eacott S, 2008, 'Strategy in educational leadership: In search of unity', Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 46, pp. 353 - 375,
2008
Bates R; Eacott S, 2008, 'Teaching educational leadership and administration in Australia', JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL ADMINISTRATION AND HISTORY, vol. 40, pp. 149 - 160,
2008
Gamage DT; Eacott S; Ueyama T, 2006, 'Strategic leadership and planning for universities in the global economy', Education and Society, vol. 24, pp. 49 - 65
2006
Reports
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Eacott S, 2017, Evaluation of the UNSW Sydney, Beverly Hills Girls High School and South Sydney High School Professional Experience Hub School Program, New South Wales Department of Education
2017