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When Jan 1, 2015 - Jun 30, 2015
Where Barceloa
Submission Deadline Jun 30, 2015
Categories    e-learning    innovation   leadership   open education

Call For Papers

The accelerated development of advanced digital technologies is creating new opportunities and challenges for open and distance learning leaders who must effectively navigate their institutions and organizations within a highly competitive and rapidly changing market. Moreover, the field has lacked a substantive body of literature on leadership for open and distance learning. Conversely, despite a prolific body of research and practice on innovation, the conceptual basis has been focused on innovation concepts being synonymous with technology rather than a broader framework that builds a community of innovation across institutions, communities and ODL units that encapsulate innovative thinking in policies, procedures, processes, partnerships, and leading change. This special issue on leadership and innovation will focus on expanding the frameworks for leadership and innovation for ODL and exploring how both can create synergistic strategies that help ODL organizations thrive, not just survive, in the 21st century.

Subject areas

We are interested in receiving research articles on the following topics covered by the special section, corresponding to any sector of education and from anywhere in the world.

Specifically, the special section's subject areas are as follows:

Shared leadership models for ODL organizations, institutions and multinational partnerships

Visionary leadership approaches for managing and leading institutional and organizational change

Policy and planning for development of open distance education

Managing and developing the unique cultural dimensions of leadership in developing countries, particularly in Latin and South America, Africa, and Asia

Application/realization of classical and contemporary theories of leadership and management specific to open and distance learning

Institutional frameworks for creating ‘communities for innovation’ in tertiary institutions in collaboration with schools, business, government and community agencies.

Re-conceptualizing a broader vision for innovation beyond technologies

Critical leadership skills, attributes, behaviours for the next generation of ODL leaders

Guest editors

Dr. Don Olcott, Jr., FRSA, is currently Professor of Leadership and ODL, and Co‑Director of the uImagine Digital Learning Innovation Laboratory at Charles Sturt University in Australia. He also holds an appointment as Professor of Leadership and ODL at the University of Maryland University College. Don has over thirty years of leadership, management and faculty experience in open and distance learning, and ten years in the private sector. He was the 2013 recipient of the ICDE’s Individual Prize of Excellence for his global leadership and contributions to open and distance learning. Don was inducted in to the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) Hall of Fame in 2014 and was made a Fellow of the European Distance and E-Learning Network (EDEN) in 2010. He is former president and chair of the board of the USDLA.

Professor Mpine Makoe, Head, Institute for Open Distance Learning (IODL) at the University of South Africa (UNISA). Mpine is also the director of the African Council of Distance Education (ACDE) and responsible for coordinating the continental distance education database. She holds a PhD in Educational Technology and an MSc in Research Methods in Educational Technology from the Open University, UK. She also has an MA in Journalism from the University of Michigan, a BA in Communication and English (cum laude) from Hope College in Michigan, and a diploma in journalism from the Africa Literature Centre in Zambia.

Lisa Marie Blaschke, Program Director and associate professor for the Master of Distance Education and E‑Learning at Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg in Germany. Lisa is also an e-learning and communications consultant with over 20 years’ experience leading and implementing enterprise-wide knowledge management and training solutions in corporate learning environments. She has an MDE from the University of Maryland University College and a BS in Technical Communication from the University of Minnesota. Lisa is an executive committee member of the European Distance and E-Learning Network (EDEN), and an EDEN Fellow. She is a member of the editorial board for the European Journal of Open, Distance, and E-Learning (EURODL) and a peer reviewer for numerous distance learning publications, such as IRRODL, JOLT, ALT-J, the South African Journal of Higher Education, and IGI Global.

Submission deadline

Articles should be submitted by 30 JUNE 2015

Articles will be published in Issue 13, Vol. 1 (January 2016)

Author guidelines and submission procedure

Articles should be between 4,000 and 5,000 words long and must contain the following:


Abstract (200-300 words)

Four to six keywords

Article (divided into sections and subsections)


Figures can be included within the article, but please also attach them in a separate file.

In order to ensure a blind review, please place authors’ personal details in a separate file. The personal details required are:

Name and surname

ORCID digital identifier (

Position or academic affiliation

Full professional postal address and e-mail address

Short CV (100-200 words)

The articles selected by the editors will be peer reviewed by at least two members of RUSC’s Editorial Board or by renowned experts in the field, as indicated by the editor.

You need to register as an author on the journal’s website in order to submit an article. Once registered, enter the username and password you receive during the registration process to begin the submission procedure. In Step 1, select the Special Section, and accept the submission and copyright terms and conditions. In Step 2, enter the metadata (title, abstract, keywords). In Step 3, attach the original article. You can skip Step 4 if there are no additional files, but you need to go on to Step 5 to complete the procedure. We strongly recommend checking the journal’s author guidelines before submitting an article. Please, remember to specify that it is for the SPECIAL SECTION.

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