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USC awards Queensland’s first DBA

THE University of the Sunshine Coast has awarded Queensland’s first Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degree to Brisbane management consultant Wayne Bovey.

Dean of Business Professor Andrew Hede said the DBA was relatively new in Australia and aimed to develop executives’ applied research skills, equipping them for complex problem solving and decision-making at the highest levels of management practice.

“Whereas an MBA was previously accepted in the business world as the final qualification for top management, the DBA is emerging as valuable for executives and consultants wanting to distinguish themselves by demonstrating their ability to work on applied research at the cutting edge of business practice” Professor Hede said.

The DBA at the University of the Sunshine Coast differs from a PhD in that the research is invariably work-based and designed to develop skills of executive management rather than academic researchers.

Like a PhD, however, the DBA involves a substantial thesis which is based on rigorous empirical research within a sound conceptual framework.

Queensland’s first DBA graduate Dr Wayne Bovey said the DBA was a natural progression from the MBA in terms of professional development.

“This programme has developed a range of new skills for analysing and solving complex business issues … my clients are now receiving the benefits of the DBA study in the diverse range of management consulting assignments I undertake,” Dr Bovey said.

Dr Bovey’s research for the DBA focussed on organisational change. His study identified, measured and modelled a number of psychological factors associated with an individual’s resistance to organisational change. The research was carried out in Federal, State and Local Government departments/agencies and private sector organisations throughout Queensland.

“The University of the Sunshine Coast was the first Queensland University to offer the DBA and I found the program to be innovative and well designed,” he said.

“There is obviously a large investment of time required to complete a doctorate, however the experience for me has been very rewarding.”

 

Source:  University of the Sunshine Coast, Community Newsletter Issue 7, August 2000, page 7.

 


Journal Papers

The following papers present the findings of a major scientific study that focussed on identifying and measuring psychological factors associated with individual resistance to organisational change.

Title: Resistance to organizational change: The role of cognitive and affective processes

Authors: Dr Wayne H. Bovey and Professor Andy Hede

Journal: The Leadership and Organizational Development Journal

Year: 2001
Volume: 22
Number: 8
Page: 372-382

Publisher: Emerald

Abstract: Most previous studies of organizational change and resistance take an organizational perspective as opposed to an individual perspective. This paper investigates the relationship between irrational ideas, emotion and resistance to change. Nine organizations implementing major change were surveyed providing data from 615 respondents. The analysis showed that irrational ideas are positively correlated with behavioural intentions to resist change. Irrational ideas and emotion together explain 44 per cent of the variance in intentions to resist. The paper also outlines an intervention strategy to guide management in developing a method for approaching resistance when implementing major change.

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Title: Resistance to organisational change: The role of defence mechanisms

Authors: Dr Wayne H. Bovey and Professor Andrew Hede

Journal: Journal of Managerial Psychology

Year: 2001
Volume: 16
Number: 7
Page: 534-548

Publisher: Emerald

Abstract: The published literature on resistance to organisational change has focused more on organisational issues rather than individual psychological factors. The present study investigated the role of both adaptive and maladaptive defence mechanisms in individual resistance. Surveys were conducted in nine organisations undergoing major change and responses were obtained from 615 employees. The results indicate that five maladaptive defence mechanisms are positively correlated with behavioural intention to resist change, namely, projection, acting out, isolation of affect, dissociation and denial. The adaptive defence mechanism of humour was found to be negatively correlated with resistance intention. The paper identifies two intervention strategies which can be used by management to address the effects of defence mechanisms on resistance during periods of change in organisations.

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Autobiographical Details

Wayne Bovey D.B.A., is Principal of Bovey Management, a Brisbane based management consultancy, Queensland, Australia.

Andy Hede Ph.D., is now Emeritus Professor of Management and was Foundation Dean of Business at the University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia.