U21 Global Leadership Programme

Global Leadership Programme


U21 Global Leadership Programme

Previously run in November 2020 and March 2021, we are delighted to invite nominations from members to the next Global Leadership Programme, running February to March 2022 in partnership with Common Purpose. The Senior Leader at each member institution has been invited to submit their nominations for this programme.


The U21 Global Leadership programme is an exclusive opportunity for high potential leaders from academic and professional disciplines, especially selected from the world leading universities in the U21 membership. The programme reflects the dynamic challenges in our institutions and the leadership required to individually and collectively navigate this new context. The modules will cover: 

  • Global insights, from Higher Education and Industry, on trends, opportunities and challenges 
  • Leadership tools, skills and mind-set for navigating a new context, including the themes of collaboration, trust, adaptation and personal agility 
  • Translating leadership concepts into an individual and organisational context and developing personal action plans  

The programme is a blend of engaging asynchronous content and short interactive synchronous sessions – delivered in two time zones – over a four week period. On completion of the programme and a short reflective process, participating leaders receive a digital micro-credential.  

We are delighted that leaders from around the U21 network have contributed to the course content as well as leaders from other sectors. The course has a strong international flavour and has been designed to complement any local leadership training being offered in your own university.


  • Broadened global horizons – exposure to multiple perspectives, experiences and cultures  
  • Develop connections with peers who share similar challenges, working in different contexts 
  • Feel more confidence in facing current and future challenges and, therefore, better prepared to navigate and lead through change 
  • Increased understanding of the skills and behaviours required for more effective collaboration and adaptation – and how that applies personally 

When is it?  

Event start date: 16 February 2022 

Event end date: 16 March 2022 

View the timings for all sessions in your timezone. 

There is an overall time commitment of 8 hours for participants over the four weeks, with 4 hours of synchronous sessions and 4 hours of asynchronous sessions which can be undertaken by participants in their own time.

U21 Global Leadership Symposium

New for 2022 is a Leadership Symposium, which will take place in the second half of the year and will bring together alumni of the U21 Global Leadership programme and key stakeholders for meaningful, collaborative discussions on a contemporary leadership theme.  

Participant Testimonies from past Cohorts

"To say there will be one action as a result of this programme would be undervaluing the impact I feel it has had on my thought process, my outlook and my understanding of the core leadership themes."

"This programme came at the perfect time for me. This time of ambiguity and complexity has required me to pivot my priorities at work and home. The impact of learning more about yourself, what motivates you and how your react to life events was powerful."

"Whether it's Covid-19, another pandemic or a digital virus, an environmental crisis, civil unrest, or the slow creep of social issues in our society, the ambiguity and complexity is almost certain to continue and surviving it will not be enough. We need to learn to thrive in this new "normal" environment and find ways to make the most of the opportunities that ambiguity can bring." 

Who are Common Purpose? 

Common Purpose is a not-for-profit organisation founded in 1989 that develops leaders who can operate across boundaries. They deliver face-to-face and online leadership programmes for multiple generations of leaders: from students to senior leaders in organisations and society.

Please note this is a programme for staff at U21 universities and places on the course are by nomination only.  For further information, please contact: frankie.ring@universitas21.com