In today’s world where changes are experienced faster, it is vital for organizations to adapt to these changes and be open to innovations. Current research shows that the management approach is effective in organizational innovation. The concept of leadership has begun to change in contemporary management approaches, and pluralistic leadership approaches have come to the forefront by moving away from the solo leadership approach. The reflections of these approaches on educational administration are seen as school leadership, teacher leadership and distributed leadership. The aim of this study is to examine the mediating role of teachers’ social capital in the relationship between school principal’s distributed leadership and organizational innovativeness. Data collected from 614 school principals participating in the TALIS 2018 and data were analysed using structural equation modelling. To test the four hypotheses specified within the scope of the research model, items related to organizational innovation, social capital and distributed leadership were used. Additionally, we added the location and type of school as a control variable. Analyses showed that the scales were valid and reliable, and the data showed a normal distribution. The results revealed that school principals who show distributed leadership support social capital development in their schools and that such social capital development increases organizational innovation. Another result indicated that social capital has a mediating effect in the relationship between distributed leadership and organizational innovativeness. Distributed leadership skills of school principals should be developed to ensure the social capital development of stakeholders in schools and to implement innovative practices. In this context, we recommended policy-makers to develop practices and to arrange pre-service and in-service trainings. On the other hand, researchers should develop new models that reveal the effects of leadership behaviours on organizational innovation and use different variables as mediators in these models.
Distributed leadership, social capital, organizational innovativeness, TALIS 2018.