2017 Programme themes, dates and location

The face-to-face workshop was hosted by North-West University, South Africa, from 28-30 August 2017. 

The three themes below were evaluated:

F249 Research management

The topic of research management will explore the strategic development of an institution’s research by means of recruitment and growth, and in areas of importance intellectually, regionally, nationally, or globally, on the basis of a clear rationale consistent with the university’s mission. Programme submissions should indicate how resource distribution models used in the university support this strategy.

The topic will consider the management and reward of successful research at the level of academic units and individual staff, with respect to internal and external assessments. It will also consider how institutions develop relationships with research funders of all kinds, including governmental and intergovernmental agencies, corporate bodies, and charitable donors. How should institutions manage potential conflicts of interests at individual and institutional levels, and how can they maintain a strong ethical code in all fields with respect to research processes, outcomes, and individuals?

Assessor: Professor Sir William Wakeham FREng, Chair of Exeter Science Park, UK, and former Vice-Chancellor, University of Southampton, UK.

F250 Financial management

Good financial management provides the backbone for many activities throughout universities. Often taken for granted, long-standing, backbone administrative systems benefit from scrutiny to ensure they embody best practice, are fit for purpose, and enhance future-ready changes in the institution. Does the financial system have a strong policy underpinning? Does the IT enterprise programme support it? Does it feed into other administrative needs? Is it efficient, effective, expandable, and flexible? Does it provide good analytical information? Does it support the strategic direction of the university?

After looking at the current uses, the topic will explore financial developments that universities may need to accommodate: expanded accountability to, and metrics for, stakeholders; big data analytics; offering financial services to other institutions or enabling outsourcing; security of financial data; transparency to the organisation; and flexibility in the face of new payment systems.

Assessor: Phyllis Clark, Vice-President (Finance and Administration), University of Alberta, Canada, and board member for various organisations including the Bank of Canada.

F251 Managing human resources (within a cultural change agenda)

This topic will focus on key levers of organisational excellence and employee motivation in a dynamic global context for education: the difference between change and managing transition; how to build, maintain or change a culture; how to understand different approaches and select fit-for-purpose methodologies; understanding and measuring success over time; the assessment of cultural change gone wrong and turnaround issues; and HR’s new role as cultural ambassador and architect.

How do you plan for succession and use it successfully as part of the change plan? What are the common mistakes with the succession of in-house personnel over new hires? What is the best way to move forward in HR service delivery post-change – in/outsourcing? Hybrids? How do we determine what is important to delivery internally and how do you get buy-in to outsource those services that are not core to your new mission?

Assessor: Karen van Druten, Managing Director, Strategic Human Resource Consulting Pty Ltd, Australia, and consultant, facilitator, master coach, and university lecturer/assessor.

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Contact us

Cliff Wragg
Programme Consultant
ACU Strategic Management Programme
strategic@acu.ac.uk