DILP 2021 Developing Intellectual leaders Programme

Developing Intellectual Leaders Programme

Programme Director: Dr Kelly Pickard-Smith

The expectations placed on today’s researchers are changing, as they become engaged in more collaborative and challenge-orientated projects that reach across traditional disciplinary and professional boundaries developing their leadership skills. Successful intellectual leaders facilitate the flow of ideas, skills and knowledge between different sectors and research disciplines. They may be involved in interdisciplinary research and cross-sector working, public engagement and knowledge exchange. In the Faculty of Humanities, we consider all our postgraduate research students to be the developing intellectual leaders of the future. Whilst the notion of ‘intellectual leadership’ is broad, we believe it can be developed through a combination of academic learning, practical experience and reflection. The Developing Intellectual Leaders Programme (DILP) is a conscious attempt to apply this to your professional development during a PhD programme.

DILP supports a small group of students through a series of individual and cohort-based activities designed to help participants take active control of their professional development and make the most of their leadership potential in their academic work and future career.

DILP programme elements

The DILP programme consists of facilitated sessions and group based tasks. Included in this resource are the session timetable and more detailed outlines of the sessions and expected outcomes.

A significant benefit of the training is access to world class external facilitators with expertise in leadership and coaching.

Leadership through project development: Participants work in groups to design inter-disciplinary and collaborative research projects building in potential for knowledge exchange and impact.

Presentation and Feedback: In order to develop their research leadership skills project groups will present their project designs to a panel of experts as a ‘dragons den’ pitch and receive feedback on how they could be developed as future research proposals.

Timeline for core sessions and activities

What do you aspire to?

DILP Information Session

This information session outlines the content, expectations and outcomes of the DILP programme and is your opportunity to ask questions about the course and/or the application process.

The deadline for applications is Monday 1st Feb 2021 by 5pm

Applicants will be notified of their application outcome by Friday 5th Feb.

You can complete the application form via this link...

Nice to virtually meet each other

Meet your DILP Cohort / DiSC profiles

This is a networking session to building the teams that you will be working in throughout the project. This session is less about matching expertise and more about mixing it up to see how researchers from varying backgrounds can work interdisciplinary to provide research solutions to pressing, global problems; as set out by University of Manchester Research Beacons.

DiSC is a non judgmental behavioural model which looks at preferred ways of working and how we can ‘flex’ into other styles to work productively with others – even in conflict. I mean, how could we work more effectively together if people had their needs written all over them?

DiSC is contextual. There are no right or wrong answers or more preferable DiSC types. DiSC identifies your working preferences and only you are best placed to decide your type. However, a knowledge of DiSC may give you some insight into how other DiSC preferences operate. DiSC is applied in order to develop yourself, work with others, work in teams and develop your unique leadership style.

We will be using the DiSC model to discover your preferred working style, how that translates to your working practice and work with others.

At the end of the session you will be put into your project groups and will be issued with a project brief and application pack. As a group you will then decide which Research Beacon to design your project around and begin to assign task and complete a Project Plan (who will do what and when) to be submitted by the 12th April 2020. The Project Plan details the steps you will take in order to research and design your project and submit the final Project Proposal (submission date 19th May) and Dragons Den Pitch (25th May).

Human centred leadership

Being a Leader: The Foundation

Tutors: Nicholas Merton and Susie Miles

As academics increasingly begin to embrace the role of ‘intellectual leaders’ the training programme “Being a Leader and the Effective Exercise of Leadership” (see: https://beingaleader.org/) has recently become popular with students at UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) and at other universities around the world. The Course uses a unique methodology, which provides essential training for anyone interested in developing their ability to shape the course of their own lives, including those in a leadership position and those who aspire to lead.

In February 2021 the Faculty of Humanities at University of Manchester in association with the NWSSDTP and the NWCDTP is offering, a stand-alone component of the course. It is open to Early Career and Post Graduate Researchers. The course runs over five two-hour sessions, which will give you access to the Four Foundational Factors presented in the full course. This forms the basis for the later delivery of the full course “Being a Leader and the Effective Exercise of Leadership”.

Learning Objectives:

1. To discover for yourself and ultimately master a new way of listening, and

2. To discover for yourself and ultimately master the four foundational factors:

  • Being a Person of Integrity
  • Being Authentic
  • Being Cause in the Matter of your Life, and
  • Being up to Something Bigger than Yourself.

Teaching and Learning Methods:

Each session will focus on a carefully crafted set of power point slides which you will be asked to read along with and then explore how the content fits with and impacts your own experience. This will involve lively, authentic and often profound conversations in pairs, in groups, between members of the group and the tutors, and in carefully designed assignments.

When: Fridays 9-11am, on the 19th, 26th February and the 5th,12th, 19th March.

Coaching sessions

Dr. Pete Mann Independent Learning Advisor

Pete Mann’s lifetime is in releasing resourcefulness within people. As an American blessed to do this globally, he still works with the Global Development Institute (formerly IDPM) in the School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED), where for 30 years he has supervised the preparation of hundreds of dissertations and theses of international postgraduates.

His cross-cultural life began with impact in 1965, leaving the US after university to volunteer teach in Sierra Leone. Involvement with the voluntary sector resumed upon reaching the Northwest of England in the mid 1970s after working in cross-cultural staff training in East Africa. In Greater Manchester he was part of a start-up with NGOs, training unemployed supervisors for jobs and – much later – counselling couples with Relate.

His first appointment at The University of Manchester was as Research Fellow in the Medical School, using grounded theory to evaluate an NHS interdisciplinary management team-development project. Much more recently he advised on action research in a Sustainable Consumption Institute project improving sustainability skills and workplace knowledge in the retail sector.

Current work: An MEd and PhD complement Pete’s continuing self and professional development. He strives to keep growing through body-mind therapeutic practice, physical training and learning with and from colleagues in The Stamford Forum, a national ‘listen-think-do-learn’ partnership of which he has been the chairman the past two years.

Retiring from the University in 2008 has meant more mentoring of UN Peacekeepers, repeat requests for contributions to private-sector executive development at Henley Business School, and facilitating action learning with the Revans Academy at the Manchester Business School. A licensed Associate with the Executive Development Assessment Centre and a Fellow of the UK Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), he was recently invited to be an Honorary Fellow of SED’s Centre for Organisations in Development.

Pete has been designing and leading Humanities Faculty research-training initiatives – from building resilience, to working with NGOs, to engaging qualitative material – with PGRs and post docs since early 2009.

  • Session 1: Friday, 26th March – ‘Confirming our focus’: reviewing four foundational factors in ‘Being a Leader’ and previewing four core skills in intellectual influence
  • Session 2: Friday, 16th April – ‘Swimming with sharks’: using ethical political advantage for the greater good
  • Session 3: Friday, 23rd April – ‘My way/your way/neither/both ways? ’: improving conflict when wishes differ
  • Session 4: Friday, 30th April – ‘I as learner in corporate HE’: increasing confidence in my learning with and from my personal experience.
  • Session 5: Friday, 14th May – ‘Adding consciousness to influence’: reviewing DILP projects.


Goal of sessions: To build confidence in optimising intellectual influence while – with others – maintaining emotional wellbeing throughout everyone’s ups and downs of a doctoral journey.

2.1 Re-frame how the power from your PhD can be limited by past value assumptions?

2.2 Learn to avoid three things that happen to intelligent yet naive PGRs?

2.3 Re-evaluate the influence and control you need within key interpersonal relationships?

3.1 Predict your most- and least-used conflict-handling modes from a self-report questionnaire?

3.2 Look anew at your conflict behaviour by identifying influences of family / gender / culture?

3.3 See the relevance of “Absurdum est ut alios regat, qui seipsum regard nescit” when leading?

4.1 Engage uncertainty with assurance and cope with tentativeness robustly?

4.2 Differentiate ‘this’ from ‘that’ – thereby succeeding in a core purpose of proper research?

4.3 Convert your own and others’ tacit ‘know-how’ into plausible explicit ‘know-about’?

5.1 Own emergent ideas in the face of your colleagues’ time constraints and proven protocols?

5.2 Rise to the challenge of applying your own meta-meanings from personalised doctoral study into delivering institutional post-doctoral impact

Pete’s role is to try to . . .

· . . . hear you out and make sense of what you’re saying: to clarify what is important to you in what you think and feel.

· . . . challenge and stretch what you say, calling upon his experience of working with international PGRs. As an example, he might ask himself: is this rationalisation? a habit? an excuse? This is the confronting side of the skill of active listening: to stay on the PGR’s side while challenging an expression of restrictive, less evidenced-based PhD-level thinking.

· BLQ (one of Pete’s Big Looming Questions): Are YOU ready for this . . .?

Plan the Project

Project Management: Online resource

For DILP session 5 you will be expected to have produced a Project Plan with allocated duties, milestones and objectives with how you will go about completing the grant proposal. The project plan will be based on the information you are provided in Session 1 'Meet your cohort'.

This project management online resource consists of links to University of Manchester training. You can access this in your own time OR convene in your team to work through it together at a mutually convenient time?

You can also access the recording of previous researcher development Project Management training via the training catalogue resource tab here

You will need to login to the video portal in order to access the Project Management Workshop video.

Grant Writing: Online Resource

This grant writing online resource consists of links to University of Manchester training. You can access this in your own time OR convene in your team to work through it together at a mutually convenient time?

Project time!

DILP Project work

For the course outcomes you will be expected to produce:
  1. A Project Plan: Detailing how you will complete the grant proposal 'Project Proposal'. So who will do what and when. Due date 12th April 2020.
  2. A Project Proposal: The proposal will be based on a University of Manchester Research Beacon and will follow a grant proposal call and application, which you will be provided with in Session 1. Due Date 19th May 2020.
  3. A Dragons Den Pitch: The pitch is a presentation to a panel and accompanies the submitted Project Proposal. Due date 25th May 2020.

The DILP projects will be based on the University of Manchester Research Beacons and global grand challenges. Research beacons at The University of Manchester

The University of Manchester’s research beacons are examples of pioneering discoveries, interdisciplinary collaboration and cross-sector partnerships that are tackling some of the biggest questions facing the planet.

Crucially, for a university that places social responsibility at the core of everything we do, our research beacons demonstrate our commitment to making a difference, enabling us to improve the lives of people around the world through our research.

In Session 1 you will have been provided with a project brief that you will need to complete for your final piece of work at the Dragon Den Pitch. The project brief is a grant application template. You will complete the template based on an agreed project outline you devise as a team; which is based on one of the University of Manchester Research Beacons. However, to get to that point you will also need to complete a project plan outline which will detail how you will work together to achieve the final Project Proposal and Dragon Den Pitch. The project outline will be submitted by Monday 12th April ready for the 'Project Plan Submission Session'.

Dragon's Den

Dragons Den

Each group will select a research beacon and develop a project which speaks to those concerns. The project outcome is the completion of a research project proposal, with presentation (you can be as creative as you like with the presentation), which will be pitched to a 'Dragons Den' of academics and specialists.

Your groups will be linked via Microsoft Teams or similar (for groups to decide) so that you are able to work together to share ideas, resources and develop the Project Proposal.


DILP Outcomes

  • Complete the required training courses to develop skills and mastery in Leadership, Project Management and Grant Writing
  • Submit a Project Plan: 12th April 2020
  • Submit a Project Proposal: 19th May 2020
  • Deliver a project pitch at 'Dragons Den': 25th May 2020


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