Developing leaders for the health system

Poor leadership has been identified as one of the most important obstacles to health systems development.

Here is an article reflecting on the experience of the Oliver Tambo Fellowship Programme in training leaders for the South African health system.


Training health system leaders

One of the key reasons for weak public health systems is poor leadership.

It is urgent to up-skill aspirant leaders if countries want to achieve universal health coverage.

Here are some tips on how to do this in a way that is sensitive to the needs of workplaces:

Doherty J, Gilson L. 2015. Workplace-based learning for health systems leaders. London: RESYST Consortium. 


Leadership from ‘below:’ clinical staff and public hospitals in South Africa

Here is the link for a briefing document I produced recently on the topic of clinical leadership:

Doherty J. 2014. Leadership from ‘below:’ clinical staff and public hospitals in South Africa. Briefing note No. 4. Municipal Services Project. Available at:



Developing clinical leadership as a strategy for hospital transformation at district level

Here is the poster I presented last week at the Third Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, International Convention Centre, Cape Town, 1-3 October:  Jane Doherty

It summarises findings from a study on developing clinical leadership as a strategy for hospital transformation in district hospitals.

Hospital Management in South Africa

Recently I have had a number of requests for information on hospital management in South Africa.

Here is a summary (with links) of where to find the information of which I am aware. Of course there may be more sources out there in cyberspace – if anyone knows of some useful additions, please alert me to them in a comment on this post.

I hope this helps!


Leadership from ‘below’?: clinical staff and public hospitals in South Africa

In earlier posts I’ve referred to two relatively lengthy reports on clinical leadership – one a literature review and the other reporting findings from interviews with clinical leaders in South African district hospitals.

The main findings from these reports are now summarised in a policy note that is applicable to practitioners from other sectors.



Clinical leadership in district hospitals in South Africa

Here is a report based on interviews with clinical staff at South African district hospitals about their leadership roles:

2014_Improving public hospitals through clinical leadership


The study was conducted for the Municipal Services Project which is located at the School of Government, University of the Western Cape, Republic of South Africa, and funded by the International Development Research Centre of Canada.