ZU student research paper attracts international research community


March 16, 2015

Against the backdrop of the negligible academic literature in English on the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, new research findings attracted attention recently, at an international academic conference held in Dubai, and created a stir in the research community at Zayed University.

Arwa Saeed Al Saaidi, a senior student at the College of Business in Zayed University, wrote a research paper titled “Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan: Authentic Leader, Level 5 Leader, or Both”, which aims to analyze the leadership style of the founding father of the nation, and its positive economic outcomes on the UAE’s progress. 

The research paper was presented at the 11th International Business and Social Science Research Conference, which was held in Dubai recently. 

Under the slogan of “Research for Progress,” Arwa Al Saaidi was recognized and praised for her extensive research done on the topic of leadership. 

“It's been widely acknowledged, that the recently witnessed global economic meltdown, and several other organizational crises across the world, are the result of ethical and moral bankruptcy of current day leaders, of various organizations. Two concepts in leadership studies, that attempt to address these lacunae, are 'Authentic Leadership, and 'Level 5 leadership', both of which are widely taught in management institutions across the world,” Arwa said. 

“One stellar example of a leader whose name holds a special significance in the Arab world, and who embodies the essence of an Authentic and Level 5 leader, and whose visions and selflessness made the UAE into what it is today, is the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Unfortunately, although there are several western academics researching and teaching across the GCC, the academic literature on the leadership style, and vision and actions of this great 21st century leader is negligible,” she added. 

“My research attempted to fill this gap by undertaking a theoretical analysis of Sheikh Zayed's style, using the 'Level 5' and 'Authentic Leadership' lenses. This study comes at a time when organizational leadership as well as statesmanship across the world, are still at a low,” Arwa, who majors in accounting, pointed out. 

Arwa has done extraordinary research on the topic for several months and used many academic articles and news items as references.  

“I am looking forward to publish an extended version of  my research paper in an international academic journal in the near future,” Arwa said. 

The student’s efforts were supervised by Dr. Reynold James, Assistant Professor of Management at the College of Business in Zayed University.