THE ARCHETYPE OF A CHIEF ACADEMIC OFFICER: KEY FORMS OF CAPITAL AMONG THE CAOS OF THE AAU
Lennartz, Courtney Jo
O'Meara, KerryAnn K
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An overwhelming majority of the chief academic officers at our nation's top research universities are white men. In a time where institutions are actively trying to recruit diverse talent, enhance student outcomes, and generate revenue, this lack of diversity in academic leadership is preventing them from achieving these goals and making significant positive gains for both students and the institution. Using data on the AAU CAOs from 2008 to June 2020, this dissertation identifies key forms of capital that have enabled these individuals to advance to the role of CAO at an AAU institution. Using descriptive statistics and quantitative methods, this dissertation also examines gender differences in key forms of human capital, cultural capital, and social capital among the AAU CAOs, and reveals the dominant archetype of an AAU CAO. The findings of this study have significant implications for institutions seeking to improve the representation and full participation of women in this leadership position. It also has the potential to enable aspiring women leaders to make strategic career decisions in order to become CAO of an AAU institution.