Tuesday, July 07, 2009


You may have heard there was a fuss over a paper entitled Perspectives of UK Vice-Chancellors on Leading Universities in a Knowledge-Based Economy which appeared briefly on the web site of the journal Higher Education Quarterly, then vanished. It contains quotes from ten different university vice-chancellors. Some of the comments caused quite a stir when they were quoted anonymously in an article of the Times Higher Education.
I think that universities need to be real about the world in which they inhabit and they need to be real in thinking how they are a business. They are in business with higher education at their heart. They are into marketing themselves, competitiveness and global market challenges (R. Burgess, University of Leicester).

Vice chancellors have to help colleagues to understand the nature of the competitive educational market, to shift thinking in how the institution needs to be managed, to raise aspirations about what the institution can achieve and to formulate a strategic vision that people are willing to implement (R. Burgess, University of Leicester).

Changing perceptions in the university involves getting people to start thinking about major issues by looking at the data on the institution (R. Burgess, University of Leicester).

Whatever the others may have said, it seems to me that Bob's on the money here. Hard times are coming. Hats off to him.