Living with Disability Research Centre Online Seminar

Event status:

Event page for August 9 LiDs Webinar

Wednesday 09 August 2023 03:00 pm until Wednesday 09 August 2023 05:00 pm (Add to calendar)
James Pilbrow
Presented by:
Living with Disability Research Centre
Type of Event:
Public Lecture; Seminar/Workshop/Training; Public

Research about people with disability on boards

This month’s seminar features two presentations about new research on the experiences of people with disabilities in organisational governance structures.

Dr Alan Hough, director at Purpose at Work, presents the findings from a study that interviewed people with disabilities who were directors and were on the boards of a range of different organisations.

Dr Bernadette Curryer from Side By Side Advocacy NSW will talk about findings from the Inclusive Governance Project, which has explored how people with intellectual disabilities can be included on the boards and committees of community organisations.

Please email to register.

The emotional labour of board directors with disabilities

Dr Alan Hough, Director, Purpose at Work

This presentation draws on interviews with 47 board directors with disabilities, which examined their pathways to boards and their experiences once on boards. They served on boards in the not-for-profit sector (including disability service providers), public sector and/or the private sector organisations.

It quickly became apparent that directors with disabilities have to undertake additional emotional labour compared to their non-disabled peers. This includes, dealing with discrimination in employment and other ableism, having to demonstrate their abilities, having to argue for reasonable adjustments, deciding which battles to pick, maintaining confidence and managing experiences they identified as ‘imposter syndrome’, managing the impact of impairments, and dealing with the unique tensions of serving on boards related to their status of having a disability such as disability-related service provider or peer organisations.

By understanding the additional emotional labour of directors with disabilities, boards and organisations can modify their practices to improve the experience of directors with disabilities and can improve outcomes for their boards and organisations.

Findings and application of The Inclusive Governance Project

Dr Bernadette Curryer, Inclusive Governance researcher, Side By Side Advocacy NSW

The Inclusive Governance Project has explored how people with intellectual disabilities can be included on boards and committees of community organisations and the experiences of people with intellectual disabilities at a governance level. This presentation will provide ideas for developing a practical action plan to guide organisations towards inclusive governance.

This research interviewed board members and people who work with Boards and undertook a phenomenological analysis. The emerging themes are:

  1. Impact of inclusion at a governance level.
  2. Pathways to Board membership
  3. Experience of inclusion within Boards
  4. Support provision
  5. Concerns becoming barriers

Five principles of Inclusive Governance have been developed form the emerging themes. The principles provide the basis for an Action Plan Template to guide the implementation of inclusive governance within community and disability organisations. This Action Plan template will be explained and demonstrated. The importance of holistic inclusion throughout an organisation will be discussed.

Online via Zoom



21 Sept 2023 10:51 pm

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