Promoting Democratic Decision-Making for Academics’ Work Performance in Ugandan Public Universities

  • Wilson Okaka, PhD Kyambogo University
  • David Onen, PhD Makerere University
  • Wilberforce Okongo
Keywords: Decision Making, Democratic, Academics, Work Performance, Public University, Uganda
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The use of democratic decision-making approaches (DMA) by university academic unit managers is vital for improved scholarly productivity and regular work performance of academic staff’s in Ugandan public universities. The study examined the democratic decision-making approaches of the academic unit managers in tandem with the work performance of the academics’ in the Ugandan public universities. The research objectives were to examine the effects of democratic decision-making approaches as used by the various academic unit managers in the Ugandan public universities on the work performance of the various categories of university academics, examine the benefits of democratic decision making and explain its implications of academic productivity on education for sustainable development. The cross-sectional survey study employed mixed quantitative and qualitative data collection instruments that involved all categories of academics from assistant lecturers to professors in three selected public universities in Uganda. 325 respondents participated in the survey that was backed by in-depth interviews. The data were analyzed by the use of appropriate descriptive and inferential statistics as well as the thematic content analysis method. Preliminary findings indicated that among others, the high work performance of the academics was directly related to the democratic decision-making style which the decision-makers at various university academic units practiced. The use of democratic decision-making approach had a more significant positive effect on the work performance (WP) of the academic staff. The results showed that a unit increase in the use of DMA yields 19.1% increases in the WP of academic staff. We concluded that democratic decision-making approach promotes academic freedom, openness, incentives or motivations, and high academics’ productivity in regular work. Therefore, it is recommended that academic unit managers who aim to achieve better staff work performance for university competitiveness should adopt the democratic decision-making model for enhanced academics’ work performance output. The unit managers should also be trained and made skillful in the use of DMA because it is consultative, collective, and participative in nature.


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21 October, 2019
How to Cite
Okaka, W., Onen, D., & Okongo, W. (2019). Promoting Democratic Decision-Making for Academics’ Work Performance in Ugandan Public Universities. East African Journal of Education Studies, 1(1), 21-27. Retrieved from

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