Ken Russell
Title: Professor
First Name: Ken
Surname: Russell
Position: Professor of Strategy and Leadership
Telephone: +44 (0) 1224 263552
Linkedin: LinkedIn Icon
ORCID: ORCID Icon /link/orcid-ken-russell

Duties and Responsibilities

Alongside his role as a research professor, Ken is responsible for teaching in the realms of strategy, leadership, culture & change, innovation and consultancy.  He has a portfolio of doctoral students (PhD and DBA) that mirror these themes.  Ken has worked at RGU since 2005 and has also held a number of managerial roles within the University.  He is currently Head of the Chartered Management Institute Centre at Aberdeen Business School.

Academic Background

Previously, he was Director of MBA Programmes at Bristol Business School where he successfully led the programme through two accreditation cycles with the Association of MBAs. Ken has taught at Bristol Business School, Bath School of Management, Henley and London Business School. Prior work experience includes: 6.5 years with Eli Lilly as a Business Systems Analyst and latterly as a European Customer Service and Inventory Manager; as a Principal in the Employment Service (strategic alignment of performance management systems with priorities of the Service); KPMG as an Executive Management Consultant (Central Government Team).

Ken holds a BSc and PhD from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne (Civil Engineering) and an MBA from London Business School.

Research Interests

Current research interests can be divided into three main themes:

Business-University Collaboration

This interest is driven by a desire to have an impact on our local economy as an institution and specifically as a Business School. 

A major grant application is being prepared to take this agenda forward.  The objectives were formulated as a result of a Conference Paper personally presented at the Engage HEI in 2016 and augmented by several years of experience in working with corporate clients.

Strategy and Leadership

These aspects are often taught separately but need to be brought closer together in order to produce more competent leaders for the future.  Current exploratory work is in the realms of leadership behaviours and strategic alignment with business needs.

Higher Education Management

This is an important and on-going strand of work that has historically focused on MBA education.  It is informed by over 20 years of involvement in managing and delivering MBA programmes, membership of the Faculty of Assessors for the Association of MBAs and range of other quality assurance roles including membership of the QAA Panel to revise the Subject Benchmark statements for Business and Management at Masters level.


Shedid, M. and Russell, K. (2017), Employee Empowerment and Customer Satisfaction: An investigation from a UAE banking sector perspective, International Journal of Advanced Research in Business, vol. 1, no.1, pp2-14. (online journal)

Okafor, C. and Russell, K. (2012) A Conceptual Framework for Managing Change, International Journal of Arts and Sciences, 5 (1), pp37-54.

Okafor, C., Russell, K. and Lawal, L. (2012) Effects of the Nigerian Banking Consolidation on Competition, Research in Accounting and Emerging Economies, volume 12B, pp73-94

Okafor, C., Russell, K. and Lawal, L. (2012) Nigerian Banking Consolidation and Market Structure, Research in Accounting and Emerging Economies, volume 12B, pp95-118

Bovaird, T. and Russell, K. (2007) Civil Service Reform in the UK, 1999-2005: Revolutionary Failure or Evolutionary Success, Public Administration, vol 85, issue 2, pp301-328 

Bovaird, T. and Russell, K. 2003. "Civil Service Reform - evolution or revolution?" Refereed paper presented at British Academy of Management, September 2003, Harrogate.** Winner of Prize for Public Sector Track **

Tony Bovaird, Ken Russell, Elke Loeffler and Lucy Gaster, 2002. Civil Service Reform Case Studies: Final Report. (Published on Cabinet Office Web Site) 

Russell, K, Rippin, A. and Bovaird, T. 2001. "Strategic change at the public-private interface: does competition enhance innovation in public services?" Paper presented at British Academy of Management, September 5-7th 2001, Cardiff.

Watt C., Russell, K. and Haslum M. 2000. "Stronger Relationships Make Stronger Design Solutions", Design ,Management Journal, Spring, pp46-52.

Russell, K. and Bence D. 1998. "Initial Published Pronouncements of New Chief Executives - Meanings and Implications" Paper presented at Strategic Management Society Conference, Orlando, November 1998.

Roberts, A. and Russell, K. 1991. "Strategy and the Small Business", Paper presented at the Operations and Information Management Association Annual Conference, Warwick, June 1991.

Conference Papers

Russell, K. and Anderson A. (2016) The Role of Business Schools in Business-University Collaboration - a call for co-creation as boundary spanning, Engage HEI Conference, Preston, May.

Russell K. (2015) “Tickled Pink with Success – creating and sustaining high performing teams”, CMI Annual Scottish Conference, Napier University, 30 October

Sutherland, B., Russell, K. and Scott A. (2015) Post-experience MBAs: The transition back into the workplace for FT students, Conference Paper presented at QAA International Conference, Glasgow, June.

Russell, K. (2014) Public Professorial Lecture: Mr Kipling and Management, An Exceedingly Good Lecture, RGU, May 2014.

Russell, K. and Sutherland, B. (2014) Course Level Learning Outcomes, Graduate Attributes, Assurance of Leaning and Employability, Paper presented to the Association of Business Schools Annual Conference on Teaching and Learning, Aston University, 29-30 April 2014.

Sutherland, B., Russell, K. and Scott A. (2013) The Third Stakeholder: Towards a Pedagogy and Hierarchy of Corporate Learning in Management Programmes, Conference Paper presented at QAA Enhancement Themes Conference, June.

Russell K. (2013) Paper presented to Oil & Gas Human Capital Conference, A supply chain perspective on human capital management, London, May.

Russell K. and Joseph, R. (2013) Using a Business Model Canvas to differentiate MBA provision - a facilitated workshop: Association of MBAs Dean’s and Director’s International Conference, Warsaw, May.

Russell K. (2012) A Strategic Perspective on the Balanced Scorecard - facilitated CPD workshop for Glasgow branch of Chartered Institute of Management Accountants, Glasgow, October.

Book Chapters

Russell, K. (2016) Collaborative leadership for growth, in: The Growing Business Handbook, 17th edition, London: Kogan Page, pp180-186.

Russell, K. (2015) High Performing Teams, in: The Growing Business Handbook, 16th edition, London: Kogan Page, pp227-234 (edited book chapter)

Russell, K. (2014) Design for growth, in: The Growing Business Handbook, 15th edition, London: Kogan Page, pp141-146 (edited book chapter)

Russell, K. (2012) Too much control, too little freedom?  The case of the micro-manager` in: The Growing Business Handbook, 14th edition, London: Kogan Page, pp171-176 (edited book chapter)

Russell, K. (2010) How Leadership Evolves in Growing Companies in: The Growing Business Handbook, 12th edition, London: Kogan Page, pp333-337  (edited book chapter)