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Dr Dong Nguyen

Associate Professor

Associate Professor in the School of Education


Dr Dong Nguyen is Associate Professor in Leadership Management and Change in Education at Durham University. Dong Nguyen has around 15 years of international professional experience in educational settings. He has experienced, worked, and conducted research across many education systems, for example, in England, Scotland, Singapore, Sweden, and Vietnam. Prior to joining Durham, Dong Nguyen worked as a lecturer and programme leader at the University of Glasgow, a research associate at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, and a teacher in Vietnam. 

Dong Nguyen is Director of the Master’s Programme in Educational Leadership and Change. This MA in Educational Leadership and Change aims to support our students with development of the combined expertise in education, leadership and management, and research. The programme is designed to engage with the contemporary theory and evidence on leadership and management across sectors to inform improvements in various mechanisms, processes, and practices in education. It covers a range of critical issues around leadership development, professional learning, and leadership for equity, excellence, and innovation in education. 

Dong Nguyen’s research and publications focus on three interrelated areas: leadership, professional learning, and innovation. He has a particular interest in investigating the issues of leadership development and learning across sectors (e.g., education, business, and healthcare), cultures, and nations globally. Dong is equally interested in collaborating with colleagues to advance and mobilise a knowledge base on educational leadership in the Global South. Dong Nguyen is methodologically versatile. He is open to qualitative research methodologies, quantitative research methods, and other creative methods of data collection and analysis. 

Dong Nguyen is Editor in Chief of International Journal of Educational Management.

Dong Nguyen has got invited and delivered keynotes, guest seminars, and workshops, and acted as an external examiner for doctoral research in his areas of expertise. Dong welcomes invitations for this service. 

Information for prospective doctoral research student supervisions

Dong Nguyen welcomes appropriate applications for PhD research that has a strong alignment with his research interests, as noted in the section of research interests. 

Dong is particularly interested in the applications around the topics:

  • Leadership development / learning (in any contexts); and 
  • Advancing and mobilising a knowledge base on educational leadership (in the Global South). 

To facilicate an effective response, please provide the following information in your first email. 

1. Email title: PhD Application

2. Email content (within 500 words) to include:

  • statement that your application meets the entry requirements for PhD research at Durham University (School of Education);
  • details about your plan to secure funding for your full-time PhD research; and
  • sharing with us why you feel PhD research is for you!

3. Attachments:

  • Your current CV [maximum 2 pages], including contact details of your two referees.

  • Full transcripts of your previous higher education qualifications obtained to date.

  • Your (draft) proposal (within 2000 words, excluding references). It should cover: (1) statement of research problem, (2) significance and timeliness of addressing this problem, (3) proposed methodology and methods to address this problem, and (4) timeline for your PhD research within 3 years.

Applicants from all backgrounds and countries / nations are welcome. 

Research Projects

Dong Nguyen is currently leading the following funded projects. 

  • Evaluating the impact of leadership development programmes on school leadership, teaching and learning outcomes in Rwanda (2023-2026). Principal Investigator. Funded by VVOB – Education for Development (€103,091.8).
  • Reviewing the evidence base on effective school leadership for teacher retention: Developing an evidence-informed framework to support disadvantaged schools (2023). Principal Investigator. Funded by the Education Endownment Fund (EEF) - England (£58,934.04).

Dong Nguyen got involved in the following funded research projects.

  • Teacher Leadership in Singapore (see Nguyen, 2022; Nguyen & Ng, 2020)
  • Reviewing international research on Teacher Leadership (see Nguyen, Harris, & Ng, 2019)
  • Implementation of educational renovations in Vietnam (see Dimmock et al., 2021)
  • Reviewing research on professional learning communities in the Global South (see Nguyen et al., 2021)
  • Instructional Leadership in Singapore (see Ng et al., 2015; Nguyen et al., 2017; Nguyen et al., 2022)

Other projects 

  • Analysis of TALIS OECD data (see Nguyen, Pietsch, & Sedat, 2021)
  • School-University partnerships in Vietnam (see Nguyen et al., 2023). 

Research interests

  • Building research capacity in educational leadership for the Global South
  • Comparative research
  • Innovation in education
  • Leadership & management (across sectors / nations / cultures)
  • Leadership development & learning
  • Leading equitable organisations and systems

Esteem Indicators

  • 2023: Delivered invited talks on leadership for teacher retention at Stockholm School of Economics and Stockholm University:
  • 2023: Editor in Chief of International Journal of Educational Management: till present.
  • 2022: Member of the Editorial Board of School Leadership and Management: till present.
  • 2021: Got invited and acted as an external examiner for doctoral research at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand: on the topic of leadership and professional learning.
  • 2021: Delivered two invited keynote lectures at Tallinn University, Estonia: on the topics of leading change in educational organisations.
  • 2021: Delivered an invited keynote speech at a professional event organised by eNSPIRED Belgium: This keynote presentation discussed the evidence base on professional learning for teachers in the Global South.
  • 2020: Delivered an invited keynote speech at the annual research event organised by Professional Development Services for Teachers in the Republic of Ireland:
    This keynote presentation focused on sustaining and levelling up teacher initiatives.
  • 2018: Delivered workshops on professional development for teachers and school leaders in Vietnam: on the topics of leadership, professional learning, and implementation of renovations.


Chapter in book

Journal Article



Supervision students