University administrators – ‘lovely and well-meaning’ but still below stairs

Posted in Governance and administration on August 23rd, 2017 by steve

“In a recent piece in Times Higher Education an academic sought to explain why he was leaving the UK, blaming many aspects of our university system but reserving special criticism for administrators …” (more)

[Paul Greatrix, Wonkhe, 23 August]


Academics in the minority at more than two-thirds of UK universities

Posted in Governance and administration on September 3rd, 2015 by steve

UK“Support staff are in the majority at 71% of UK higher education institutions, analysis by Times Higher Education has revealed. Universities’ 2013-14 returns to the Higher Education Statistics Agency on staff numbers reveal that support staff were the majority at 111 out of 157 institutions …” (more)

[Paul Jump, Times Higher Education, 3 September]

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Managing your career in HE administration

Posted in Governance and administration on October 24th, 2014 by steve

UKManaging Your Career in Higher Education Administration, Michelle Gander, Heather Moyes and Emma Sabzalieva. Palgrave Macmillan 2014, ISBN 9781137328328. Managing Your Career in Higher Education Administration is possibly the first book in the UK covering careers in higher education administration …” (more)

[Paul Greatrix, wonkhe, 24 October]

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Increased university costs and admin

Posted in Governance and administration on January 31st, 2014 by steve

“One of the common themes you’ll see when people complain about rising university costs is the increased cost of administrative staff. This is usually portrayed as simply greed, or laziness on the part of universities …” (more)

[The Ed Techie, 31 January]


In praise of administrators

Posted in Governance and administration on August 5th, 2013 by steve

“It is commonplace for commentators of all kinds to disparage administration and administrators – ‘They spend 50% of their income of administration!’ scream the critics. But administration is important and if done well it can be a huge asset to any company or organisation …” (more)

[educationandstuff, 5 August]

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Online college courses: Outsourcing education

Posted in Governance and administration on May 27th, 2013 by steve

“Lecture halls can seat only so many students, but it’s easy enough to broadcast lectures online to tens of thousands. Ventures such as EdX, a non-profit consortium involving a dozen universities, and Coursera, a for-profit business, are now focused on making courses taught by outstanding instructors available to millions of students …” (more)

[The Economist, 27 May]

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The Imperfect University: First for the chop

Posted in Governance and administration on November 9th, 2012 by steve

“Last year I wrote a piece for Times Higher Education on the problem with the term ‘back office’ and the often casual, unthinking use of it in order to identify a large group of staff who play a key role in the effective running of universities but who are the first to be identified for removal or outsourcing in financially challenging times …” (more)

[Registrarism, 9 November]

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Ideal Ratio of Tenure-Track Faculty to Administrators? 3 to 1, Researchers Say

Posted in Governance and administration on November 1st, 2012 by steve

“In the long-running debate over how many administrators are too many, two economic researchers believe they have identified an ideal ratio …” (more)

[Jenny Rogers, Chronicle of Higher Education, 1 November]

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Universities overpowered by administrators?

Posted in Governance and administration on July 19th, 2011 by steve

“If you believe, as I know many academics do, that universities have become places in which professional administrators have subverted the intellectual and scholarly principles of the academy, here’s a book for you …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 19 July]

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Administrators cannot offer ‘enlightened management’

Posted in Governance and administration on July 13th, 2011 by steve

“Geoffrey Williams has recently argued that administrators cannot deliver enlightened management in universities. According to Williams only academics can do so: ‘Administration, like death and taxes, has always been here. Universities need enlightened management; the reality is that only faculty can provide this …'” (more)

[Registrarism, 13 July]

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Quiz: What university administrator are you?

Posted in Governance and administration on September 7th, 2010 by steve

“What kind of university administrator would you be? The type who lets a lot of money go to waste on unproductive activities, allows faculty to slack off, and ultimately oversees an inefficient use of taxpayers’ money? Would you aggressively seek to rein in frivolous expenses, steadfastly make the necessary cuts (even deep ones), and keep employees (faculty, that is) on their toes? …” (more)

[Exponential Book, 7 September]

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Why Would Administrators Choose to Work in a University?

Posted in Governance and administration on April 12th, 2009 by steve

UK“It is commonly thought that management is taking on a larger and more strategic role in universities. As faculty slowly and continually retreat to a limited set of responsibilities they leave more functions in the hands of non-academics. In the US and Australia, administrative staff now outnumber academics. And their impact on the institutions is clearly being felt. Greater attention, for example, is being paid to efficiencies through centralized services. Outsourcing (very) slowing growing as schools seek to focus on their core competencies. The strategic planning process actually involves … well … strategic planning. There is less hesitancy to collaborate with the private sector and so forth. These changes generate all sorts of new dynamics within universities …” (more)

[Keith Hampson, Higher Education Management, 12 April]

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