Four management agendas for Australian universities; Collegial; Engaged; Strategic; Systematic

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In a new mixed economy of higher learning, Australian universities require more strategic management to compete and collaborate sustainably. However, many scholars argue that new modes of university management are at odds with scholarly aims and values. This article examines how Australian universities frame their missions and communicate their strategies, and the contradictory space that university managers occupy. A framework for defining elements of strategic management and practical approaches to managing in a university context is proposed.


“Each of these four approaches has its virtues; and each implies a kind of recipe for
success. In the top two quadrants the styles of managing that seem best suited to the
Professional Community and Creative Engagement zones are perhaps most familiar and
well accepted in scholarly communities. They may well be seen as the dominant modes
in a relatively small, stable and well-funded institution. But for large complex enterprises
in a dynamic mixed economy of higher learning, these two approaches soon find their
limits. In Australian universities they have been supplemented by quite different styles
of managing that have emerged to meet new risks and complexities in the Sustainable Enterprise and System Integrity zones. Given the context, there are at least four distinct ways to manage well: in one zone the good manager aims above all to be collegial; in another, engaged; in the third zone, strategic; and in the fourth, systematic.”


Source: Geoff Sharrocka (2012). Four management agendas for Australian universities. Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management: Vol. 34, MTEM Special Issue, pp. 323-337. DOI:10.1080/1360080X.2012.678728

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About Wilfred Mijnhardt
RMIMR is my virtual playground, a place to reflect on issues from my professional context, my job as Policy Director at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM). RSM is the international university based business school at Erasmus University Rotterdam. More info here: Here is my list of relevant publications on the topic of my RMIMR weblog: The rss feed for my RMIMR collection is here: Here is my other weblog on impact of research:

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