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Department of Management

 Jackie Bagnall

Jackie Bagnall

Senior Lecturer, Leadership and Personal Effectiveness


 +44 (0) 1392 726289



Building:One,  University of Exeter, Rennes Drive,  Exeter,  EX4 4ST, UK


As former MBA Director, Jackie has a commercial background coupled with 18 years of programme leadership.  She is responsible for the design and delivery of both UG and PG programmes, working with colleagues and external partners to understand the role of management education in shaping responsible business leaders. Shewas part of the team that launched the One Planet MBA in 2010 and  led on the design and launch of the degree apprenticeship portfolio in 2018.

With an academic background in social and organizational psychology and a consultancy background in action learning and leadership development, Jackie joined the Business School in 2003 as Programme Director of Leadership Southwest (LSW) a six-year professional development programme based within the Centre for Leadership Studies. This regional project focused on building leadership capacity in organizations and included bespoke programmes for the arts and cultural sector, the health and education sector. She led on the leadership skills strategy for the SW region and delivered commercial programmes aimed at business throughout the SW. 

As part of LSW, she also developed a three-year, European funded Women in Leadership project entitled Inspire. Working in partnership with the Institute of Directors to support female business leaders to achieve Chartered Director status.

Bringing academic study alongside professional practice she designed and launched the initial portfolio of finance and leadership degree apprenticeship programmes in the business school.  

Administrative responsibilities

  • Module Lead MBAM961, BEMM114DA and BEMM170  

Nationality: British


  • MSc in Social and Organisational Psychology
  • Fellow RSA
  • Fellow FHEA
  • MBPsS


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Research interests

  • Transformational learning in management education
  • Learning as an essential component of complex systems
  • Female entrepreneurship and resilience

As a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy her scholarship is centered on the transferability of critical enquiry in leading and managing self and others. Asking how management education takes up its role in ensuring responsible practice. Working with students on skills of reflection to better understand the interpretive frameworks that drive our decisions and behaviors.

Research projects

Jackie’s scholarship explores the art of engaged learning, taking ideas from complexity theory and arguing that our goal as teachers is to create the receptive context within which we can support the learner to transform. From a state of flux rather than a state of certainty, we more accurately mirror the complex and uncertain nature of organisational life. It is on this basis that we as teachers join with students to make sense of practice by engaging critically with the ideas, concepts and theories inherent in research.

Having spent two years based within an independent school establishing a Centre for Peace and Global Studies, Jackie explored the role of developing moral imagination in preparing young people for global employment.

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Journal articles

Bolden R, Bagnall J (2009). Building regional leadership capacity: lessons from Leadership South West. Education + Training, 5(8/9), 635-647. Abstract.

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External Engagement and Impact

External positions

  • Honorary Research Fellow, Health Complexity Group, Exeter Medical School
  • Fellow, The Higher Education Academy
  • Member, The British Psychological Society
  • Fellow, The Rotal Society of Arts 
  • External Examiner - MBA programmes, Manchester BUsiness School
  • Exetrnal Examiner -  MBA programmes, Trinity College Dublin
  • Academic adviser - MSc in Sustainable Fashion Marketing, London College of Fashion 

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It is the ability to work with a range of contemporary leadership issues that most interests Jackie – Ethics, corporate citizenship, resilience and complexity. She enjoys working with students to make sense of these topics, bringing contemporary issues from industry into the classroom, supporting students to engage with the difficult questions at the heart of leading positive change.

Her interests are centred on leadership studies and organisational learning, exploring theories and concepts which cast light on the complexity of organisational life. Using a variety of teaching methods, designed to engage students in the higher level skills of analysis, reflection, application and synthesis, Jackie strives to equip them with the ability to critically engage and explore a range of complex global issues.

The ability to create persuasive arguments, critically reflect on complex issues and engage with questions, are skills that she believes enable adaptive, responsive leadership.

  • Ethics and Leadership
  • Business and Society
  • Personal transformation
  • Social Psychology
  • Systems thinking and complexity
  • Stress and well being



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