Professor Michelle Ryan
Professor of Social and Organisational Psychology/ Dean of Postgraduate Research and Director of the University of Exeter Doctoral College

External responsibilities

Awards and distinctions

THES Finalist (with Alex Haslam) Research Project of the Year (2005)
Runner-up ESRC Michael Young Prize (2006)

Visiting Professorship, Groningen (2007)

Editorial responsibilities

Associate Editor, British Journal of Social Psychology (2010-2012)

Invited lectures

Conferences

Ryan, M. K. (2013). Beyond the glass ceiling: How the glass cliff reveals the precariousness of women's leadership positions. Invited keynote address to EAWOP Small group meeting on Gender in Organisations. Frankfurt, Germany, October.

Ryan, M. K. (2012). Beyond the glass ceiling: Revealing the precariousness of women's leadership positions. Invited keynote address to the BPS Division of Occupational Psychology Conference 2012, London. UK. October.

Peters, K., & Ryan, M. K. (2010). How perceptions of leadership impact on female surgeons’ career ambition. Invited address to the Women in Surgery Conference, London, November. 

Haslam, S.A., Reicher, S., Ryan, M. K., & Peters, K. & (2010). The New Psychology of Leadership. Invited presentation at the British Festival of Science, Birmingham, September.

Ryan, M. K., & Peters, K. (2009). Career progression for women in the police service: Using fit to stoke ambition. Invited address to the British Association of Management Gender in Management Special Interest Group day. London, UK, November.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2009). Beyond the glass ceiling: Revealing the precariousness of women's leadership positions. Invited address to the Association for the Teaching of Psychology Annual Conference, Exeter, UK, July.

Ryan, M. K., & Peters, K. (2009). Career progression for women in the police service: Using fit to stoke ambition. Invited address to the Senior Women in Policing Conference. Exeter, UK, April.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2008). The Glass Cliff: Precariousness and stress beyond the glass ceiling. Invited paper presented to European Woman Lawyer Conference. London, UK, July.

Ryan, M. K., Haslam, S.A., & Peters, K. (2008). Are we still falling over the glass cliff? Invited address to the Senior Women in Policing Conference. Birmingham, UK, February.

Ryan, M. K., Kulich, C., & Haslam, S. A. (2008).Working through indifference: An integrated analysis of women's experiences with leadership. Invited address to the Changing Leadership Agenda, ESRC Seminar Series, Centre for Leadership Studies.

Industry events and Colloquia

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2013). New Psychology of Leadership. Invited address to the LFHE Welsh Research Leaders Program. Cardiff, Wales. July

Ryan, M. K. (2013). Uncovering the Glass Cliff: Dynamics surrounding the appointment of women to precarious leadership positions. Invited talk to University of Cambridge Women’s Network, Cambridge, UK, June.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2013). New Psychology of Leadership. Invited address to the NHS Aspiring Leaders Program. Ashburton, UK. Feb

Ryan, M. K. (2012). Uncovering the Glass Cliff: Dynamics surrounding the appointment of women to precarious leadership positions. Invited keynote address to the BPS South West AGM, Exeter, UK. November.

Ryan, M. K. (2012). Uncovering the Glass Cliff: Dynamics surrounding the appointment of women to precarious leadership positions. Invited address to the launch of the London Metropolitan Business School Centre for Progressive Leadership. London, UK. November

Ryan, M. K. (2012). The Glass Cliff: Dynamics surrounding the appointment of women to precarious leadership positions. Invited keynote address to the Women’s International Network WINFest Board Boot Camp. London, UK. November

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2012). New Psychology of Leadership. Invited address to the NHS Aspiring Leaders Program. Taunton, UK. May

McNally, S., Fernandes, H., Peters, K., & Ryan, M. K. (2011). Improving fit among female surgeons.Invited paper presented at the National Association of Medical Educators, London, January.

McNally, S., Fernandes, H., Peters, K., & Ryan, M. K. (2011). Improving fit among female surgeons. Invited paper presented at the Academy of Medical Educators, London, January.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2011). New Psychology of Leadership. Invited address to the NHS Aspiring Leaders Program. Ashburton, UK. September

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2011). The Glass Cliff: Dynamics surrounding the appointment of women to precarious leadership positions. Invited talk to the Psychology Department, University of Cardiff, Exeter UK, June.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2011). The Glass Cliff: Dynamics surrounding the appointment of women to precarious leadership positions. Invited talk to the Work & Organisational Psychology Group, Aston Business School, Birmingham, May.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2010). The Glass Cliff: Dynamics surrounding the appointment of women to precarious leadership positions. Invited talk to the Politics Department, University of Exeter, Exeter UK, March.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A. (2010). New Psychology of Leadership. Invited address to the NHS Aspiring Leaders Program. Ashburton, UK. May

Ryan, M. K., Peters, K. O., & Haslam, S.A. (2010). Fitting in or opting out: Ambition and the under-representation of women. Invited address to the International Women’s Day event. Exeter, UK, March.

Ryan, M. K., Peters, K. O., & Haslam, S.A. (2010). Fitting in or opting out: Ambition and the under-representation of women. Invited address to the IBM International Women’s Day event. London, UK, March.

Ryan, M. K., Peters, K. O., & Haslam, S.A. (2009). Opting Out or Being Left Out: Do Women Really Lack Ambition? Invited address to the Trafford Council Female Leadership Event. Manchester, UK, September.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A.. (2009). Beyond the glass ceiling: The precariousness of women's leadership positions. Invited address, Women in Science Colloquium, Groningen, NL, January.

Ryan, M. K., Haslam, S. A., Peters, K. O., & Kulich, C. (2009). Do women lack ambition: Explaining the opt-out revolution. Invited address, School of Psychology, University of Melbourne, March.

Ryan, M. K., Peters, K., & Haslam, S. A. (2009). Opting out or being left out: Do women really lack ambition? Invited address Society of Petroleum Engineers’ Women in The Energy Sector Seminar. London, UK, May.

Ryan, M. K., & Haslam, S. A.. (2008). Beyond the Glass Ceiling: Revealing the precariousness of women’s leadership positions. Invited address, Department of Psychology, University of Winchester, April.

Ryan, M. K., Haslam, S. A., Hersby, M. D., Kulich, C., & Atkins, C. (2008). The Glass Cliff: Precariousness beyond the glass ceiling. Invited address, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, January.

Media Coverage

Since its discovery, the term ‘glass cliff’ has entered public discourse and the concept informs and shapes debate and the public understanding of women’s leadership positions. 

The media has embraced the notion of the glass cliff, incorporating it into analyses of women’s leadership positions. A Google news search for ‘glass cliff’ reveals over 160 news articles that refer to the glass cliff.

A broader phrase search reveals nearly 25,000 hits which include blogs (e.g., the Wall Street Journal blog, July 2012), HR websites (e.g., Human Capital Online, Oct 2008), and online resources for female leaders (e.g., femalebreadwiinners.com)

The UK media coverage has included all major British newspapers and television stations as well as local newspapers. The research has also been represented worldwide, from the Boston Globe to the Calcutta Times, from CNN to Australian radio.

Importantly, while initial media coverage was restricted to reports directly about the research project itself, in more recent years this is no longer the case. The glass cliff is now frequently discussed with no reference to the research itself, but rather is now accepted as a common phrase that can be used to explain women’s leadership. Indicative of the glass cliff becoming a common phrase within public discourse, in 2011, of the nearly 1,600 web hits which included mention of the glass cliff, over 500 of them made no mention of the research or the researchers themselves.

The New York Times named the glass cliff as one of the Top 100 ideas that shaped 2008.

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