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Dr Simon Kelly

PositionLecturer in Human Resource Management / Organisational Behaviour
LocationUniversity of Bradford School of Management
Emm Lane
West Yorkshire
DepartmentSchool of Management
Telephone+44 (0)1274 238919

Teaching and Supervisory Responsibilities

Simon currently teaches a range of undergraduate and postgraduate modules including Managerial Leadership (MBA), Leading, Managing, and Developing People (MSc), Leadership: Theory and Practice (MSc), and Organisational Analysis (2nd year Undergraduate).

Organisational Analysis

Leading, Managing, and Developing People
Leadership: Theory and Practice

Managerial Leadership

Executive Education
Managerial Leadership


Simon joined the School in August 2012 following his previous post as a Lecturer in Management at the University of Essex. Simon studied at Lancaster University Management School for his undergraduate degree and at Lancaster University Department of Sociology for his PhD. Here he also gained a Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education Practice and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Simon’s research specialises in critical leadership studies and leadership development. As well as publishing in international academic journals on this subject, Simon’s research has also informed UK government policy on further education reforms and educational leadership development. Simon has taught at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels in the areas of leadership studies, organizational behaviour, human resource management, and management psychology.

Study History

BA(Hons), PhD, PG Cert

Research Areas

Simon is interested in critical leadership studies and the value and challenges of using qualitative research methods in leadership research and organisational analysis. His current research explores the ontological foundations of leadership theory and the critical study of experiential leadership development. Simon is also interested in the role and function of popular culture, mythology, and the monstrous for analysing contemporary organisational life.

Current Projects

Simon’s previous research projects have examined the collaborative and distributed nature of leadership in the UK further education (FE) sector. Findings from this research have informed the Foster Review of Further Education (2005) and have provided a resource for regional FE leadership training programmes. Simon’s current research project examines the theory and practice of experiential and outdoor leadership development programmes and their impact on participants over the medium and longer term. In a second project, Simon is investigating how the literary and cultural figure of the monster can be used to understand the (often marginal) themes of aging and death in organisation studies.


Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) and a member of the European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS).


Refereed journal articles

Senior, A. and Kelly, S. (2016) ‘On the Dialectics of Charisma in Marina Abramovic’s The Artist is Present’.Performance Research, 21(3): 74-83.

Riach, K. and Kelly, S. (2015) ‘The Need for Fresh Blood: Understanding Organizational Age Inequality Through a Vampiric Lens’. Organization, 22(3): 287-305.

Kelly, S. (2014) ‘Towards a Negative Ontology of Leadership’. Human Relations, 67(8): 905-922.

Kelly, S. and Riach, K. (2014) ‘Monstrous Reanimation: Rethinking organizational death in the UK financial services sector’. Culture and Organization, 20(1): 7-22.

Kelly, S. (2014) ‘Horses for Courses: Exploring the Limits of Leadership Development Through Equine Assisted Learning’. Journal of Management Education, 38(2): 216-233.

Kelly, S. (2008) ‘Leadership: A Categorical Mistake?’ Human Relations, 61(6): 763-782.

Kelly, S., Iszatt White, M., Martin, D. and Rouncefield, M. (2006) ‘Leadership Refrains: Patterns of Leadership’.Leadership, 2(2): 181-201.

Kelly, S., Iszatt White, M. and Rouncefield, M. (2006) ‘Meetings as the Practical Accomplishment of Educational Leadership’. International Studies in Educational Administration, 32(3): 46-61.

Book chapter

Kelly, S. (2015) ‘Leadership and Process’. In Carroll, B., Ford, J., Taylor, S. (Eds.) Leadership: Contemporary Critical Perspectives, Sage Publications, pp. 169-187.

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