Building Organizational Capacity: Strategic Management in Higher Education

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"Rare is the university or college president who has not advanced a vision for the future of his or her institution. Specific organizational-change initiatives, intended to support such aspirations, typically follow. Organizational restructuring or infrastructure improvements at a liberal arts college, for example, might support a broader strategy toward becoming more selective. A community college concerned with improving student academic achievement may focus on altering its academic culture and making various structural changes in areas such as student advising. Comprehensive institutions commonly launch or extend graduate programs with visions of raising their profiles and producing more revenue. Research universities are likely to pursue faculty who can generate resources. Selective institutions, as a whole, compete aggressively for the most accomplished students. Almost all institutions are interested in establishing new markets and launching programs in popular professional fields, often at satellite sites convenient to working students.

"The administrative foundation required to support these expansive institutional aspirations, however, is less emphasized by leaders. This book offers a framework for building needed organizational capacity within higher education institutions. Building Organization Capacity (BOC) categorizes the functioning of a university of college into a manageable set of specific elements, suggesting the need for them to be in sync. This approach is consistent with the strategic-management models long applied to corporations, indicating the areas in which an organization may need to adapt as it attempts to realize an initiative and, ultimately, its mission and its aspirations. Like other strategic-management models, the BOC framework necessarily incorporates the logic of systems thinking-the notion that the components within a complex organization are interrelated and must be considered simultaneously. However, BOC does not ask leaders and senior managers in higher education to apply an actual systems framework, as most of these approaches are quite rigid, especially those grounded in quantitative modeling. Instead, systems thinking merely suggests that the alignment of components within an organization is essential to its strategic management."-from the Introduction

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Editorial Reviews

Review of Higher Education
Toma achieves the stated goal of the book. With practical concepts and real-world examples, he convincingly proposes Building Organization Capacity as fundamental for creating and sustaining initiatives to improve institutions of higher education.

— Jeffrey W. Alstete

Review of Higher Education - Jeffrey W. Alstete

Toma achieves the stated goal of the book. With practical concepts and real-world examples, he convincingly proposes Building Organization Capacity as fundamental for creating and sustaining initiatives to improve institutions of higher education.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801897634
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 9/27/2010
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

J. Douglas Toma is an associate professor at the Institute of Higher Education, University of Georgia.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Table of Contents

Foreword James E. Morley, Jr. vii

Acknowledgments xiii

Introduction 1

1 Strategic Management and Systems Thinking 15

2 Managing Increasingly Complex Institutions 35

3 Purposes: Redesigning the Curriculum at The College of New Jersey Matthew Hartley 54

4 Structure: Rethinking the Setting for Teaching Mathematics at Virginia Tech Kelly Ward 75

5 Governance: Enterprise Resource Planning Implementation at Valley City State University Adrianna Kezar 97

6 Policies: Enhancing Faculty Scholarship and Integrating Student Research into the Curriculum at LaGrange College Kathleen Shaw 118

7 Processes: Improving Student Retention at Paul D. Camp Community College Christopher C. Morphew 135

8 Information: Tuition Discounting at the University of Redlands Kevin Kinser 151

9 Infrastructure: Maintaining Quality with Static Resources at Seminole Community College Lisa Wolf-Wendel 172

10 Culture: Invigorating Undergraduate Education at the University of Georgia Greg Dubrow 189

Conclusion 207

Appendix 221

Notes 229

Bibliography 239

Index 259

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