on Winter School
SECOND ALUMNI SEMINAR
Change Management in Higher Education and
Development of Winter School Alumni Network
Università di Bologna
12-13 November 2004
Friday 12 November
Ms Ines Fabbro shared with us her thoughts and lessons-learned on important elements in the
career of a Head of Administration -
? Capacity to adapt to the environment
? A university is an institution with resources of high quality; be aware of that
? “Humble skills”: Cultural curiosity, entrepreneurial role (commitment) and interpersonal
? A wish for projects to be realised and to believe in them
? To take please from the success of other people
? You are not the only one to bear responsibility!
After a short reflection about the experiences in Barcelona from two alumni from 2003 and 2004
Mr Jon Baldwin gave a stimulating presentation on the art of merger. He stressed the importance
of judgement. (Presentation see Annex 1).
In the discussion, he thought the single most important success factor to be vision- but the vision
should be communicated well in order to be transformed into ownership.
The balance between retaining a clear and radical vision and compromising (being pragmatic) for
the sake of keeping momentum was also discussed.
One additional element of good practice were reference groups composed of staff and students
from all parts of the institution (To take a slice through the institution).
Presentation of a MBA programme in Higher Education by Anton j. Nijssen (Annex 7).
Saturday 13 November
Report on working groups
The working groups, that took place on Friday were able to reflect on the presentation of Jon
Baldwin, as it touched each topic of the working group in a certain way.
Some of the discussed topics will be further developed in ongoing working groups.
The initiative will be taken either by the group facilitator or a member of the working group.
The further development of the topic change management in Higher Education (based on the
outcome of this seminar) will be looked after by the steering group of the alumni.
Profile working group:
Important to develop vision and share it with a wide group in order to refine it towards
Merger working group:
See presentation Michael Wilmes (Annex 2)
Communication working group:
The purpose of the group was to raise awareness of everyday situations in terms of communication.
The group decided to keep on working on the subject to develop a compendium of “keywords”.
The immediate outcome was a list of keywords to be used in everyday practice.
? Communication is exchange
? People are different, so they understand in different ways
? Always check what you communicate
? Be aware: You cannot NOT communicate (P. Watzlawick)
? It is important who communicates
? Do you want to communicate information, or a (desired) change in behaviour? ? Formal versus informal (political) communication: choose which is best suited in a given
situation (e.g. decisions in a formal way; developments informally), but use both, and mix
? Trust is important
? Keep on communicating/Do not stop after the initial phase of a project ? Differentiate in communication
? Its better to include more people than leaving people out
Social and cultural aspects working group:
The role play exercise showed interesting approaches to different social styles and a high level of awareness of social styles in the group – however the content of the discussion remains
Social styles are important to be aware of in change management. They are however highly individual and case-dependent. It is relevant to conduct these exercises but difficult to translate into generally applicable theories.
Report on the presentation and discussion of the alumni network
The presentation of the development of the alumni network was based on the proposal from the steering group (Annex 3) and explained the history, the vision, possible activities, a possible management structure, finances and the experiences the group made with the set up so far.
The main pillar is the triangular approach between HUMANE, the Winter School and the alumni, implying that all the involved benefit from each other.
The HUMANE Executive committee, the HUMANE Round Table and the Winter School steering committee agreed to the proposal (Annex 3) and assured their support for this development. Seminars and study visits have been identified as the core activities for the start up. The steering group of WS I developed with the HUMANE chairman, the executive committee and the WS steering committee a guideline for the study visits (Annex 4), based on the experiences from recent study visits of the alumni. A working group, that will be set up by WS I and WS II alumni will develop this further and promote this idea.
The discussion of the proposal showed general support and interest for the presented ideas. To keep up with the continuity of the established development, participants approved that the steering group of Winter School I will keep on working.
It was also agreed that 4 participants of Winter School II will be involved in the further development.
From Winter School III one alumni will be involved.
Once the organisation is settled in its basic structure, the management of the alumni network will be reduced to a smaller, more manageable group.
There was also general agreement to finance activities mainly by seminar fees. In addition a small fee (possibly connected with the HUMANE membership fee) of approximately 50 Euros/year could be introduced to finance the administration of the network.
There was further agreement to keep the strong link to HUMANE and the Winter School. Volunteers from 2
nd WS: Esa Hamalainen, Mary Hughes, Wilma de Koning and Susan Bridgeford
To establish a possible working format the steering group will set up working groups in which more volunteers can be integrated (WS II alumni will look for more volunteers).
Four working groups have been identified so far:
? Preparation of next Seminar (proposed location Amsterdam)
? Constitution/Details of Proposal/ Finances
? Study visits
The further development of the network will be presented and discussed at the next WS alumni seminar.
Benchmarking change management in HE institutions
Presentation by Nadine Burquel see Annex 5
Report on exercise: 30% cutback by government on Bologna University budget
Not a threat but an opportunity!
Twin track: lobby to convince Minister to reduce cutback, and
strategic review by SWOT, leading to Vision, translating into performance review that is basis for decision on which areas to cut and which to develop.
Short-term: sell assets and services
Long-term: reach out to new public; set up new services; cooperate with industry; sell shares
Fire temporary personnel
10% cut all units
Cut in maintenance / building
Cut on travel and conferences
Merge and share services
Review degree programmes, close small ones
Cut on support staff
Financial/academic (HEFCE Risk Assessment guide www.hefce.ac.uk)
Pay cut& job guarantee
Training and consultancy budget
Efficiencies, unit mergers
Work from home-> save space, sell buildings
Communication plan for short and long term, internal and external
Meeting of leadership with stakeholders
List of comments:
? Importance of network function
? Choice of topics that can attract all of the alumni and not just specialist topics
? Keep discussion/working groups
? Keep small structure of network
? Focus on basic activities (seminars, study visits)
? Use Website for information
? Try to have high standard of presentations at seminars
Russell Ashworth - Faculty of Humanities, University of Manchester
Liduine Bremer - Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Thomas Estermann - University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna
Giovanna Filippini - Università degli Studi di Bologna
Walter Kühme - Universität Heidelberg
Annex 1: Presentation Jon Baldwin
Annex 2: Presentation Working group Merger of Units
Annex 3: Proposal for the Development of a European Alumni Network
Annex 4: Guideline for HUMANE-ESMU Winter School certified study visits
Annex 5: Presentation Nadine Burquel
Annex 6: Agenda Seminar
Annex 7: Presentation of MBA in Higher Education