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Where planning comes together. T​he power of SCUP is its community. We learn from one another, sharing how we’ve achieved success and, maybe more importantly, what we’ve learned from failure. SCUP authors, produces, and curates thousands of resources to help you prepare for the future, overcome challenges, and bring planning together at your college or university.

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Published
July 21, 2022

A Practical Guide to Strategic Planning in Higher Education

Second Edition, with New and Updated Content

A resource for anyone engaged in college or university strategic planning, and an excellent primer for planning committees. This second edition also contains new strategies for using an institution’s strategic plan during times of institutional upheaval, and additional techniques for jump-starting various parts of the planning process.

Abstract: A Practical Guide to Strategic Planning in Higher Education is a resource for anyone engaged in college or university strategic planning; it is also an excellent primer for planning committees. Using clear definitions, practical tips, and examples drawn from actual situations, this short book acts as a manual for both experienced planners and those who are new to the process. This second edition also contains new strategies for using an institution’s strategic plan during times of institutional upheaval, and additional techniques for jump-starting various parts of the planning process.

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Blog

Published
July 6, 2022

What Is a Bridge Plan?

(And Does Your Institution Need One?)

A bridge plan allows a college or university to continue to pursue defined strategic pathways during times of uncertainty or rapid, unpredictable change. It’s also a good solution for when faculty and staff are overwhelmed due to a highly volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) environment.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
April 6, 2022

Teetering on the Demographic Cliff, Part 3

Different Conditions Require a Different Kind of Planning

Higher education has faced major changes for some time—COVID-19 accelerated that volatility—and now we’re anticipating the demographic downslope in student enrollment. How and when should institutions mobilize for the difficult work of planning in the face of wrenching change?

From Volume 50 Number 2 | January–March 2022

Abstract: Part 1 of this series described a major contraction in the pool of college-going 18-year-olds that will reverse decades of growth and stability for higher education. Part 2 explored how we can shape a planning context that supports success in the coming 10 or 20 years. Part 3 suggests how our approach to planning must shift to prepare for abrupt change.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 14, 2021

A Mountain Climber’s Guide to Scrambling Through Change

This session will discuss how to take key climbing skills—assessing a changing environment and determining which tools, resources, and expertise are needed to manage change—and apply them to higher education.
Abstract: Solo climbing mountainous terrain is like managing change in higher education—it requires meticulous planning, considerable effort, and the ability to adapt to a changing environment. This session will discuss how to take key climbing skills—assessing a changing environment and determining which tools, resources, and expertise are needed to manage change—and apply them to higher education. It will share a framework to plan for and manage change so you can achieve your personal and professional objectives.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 13, 2021

Strategic Plan Implementation in a VUCA Environment

In this session, we'll share how Lakehead University developed a phased strategic approach to guide implementation of its strategic plan.
Abstract: Institutions are currently operating in a VUCA environment, requiring them to manage immediate pressures while still advancing long-term goals. In this session, we'll share how Lakehead University developed a phased strategic approach to guide implementation of its strategic plan. Come learn how a revised approach can serve as a foundation to support a community-informed strategic plan implementation in a VUCA world.

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Conference Recordings

Published
March 19, 2021

2021 North Atlantic Regional Conference | March 2021

President’s Panel

Transforming and Reimagining Higher Education for the Future

In this session, three college and university presidents from the United States, Canada, and Europe will reflect on how we can transform and reimagine higher education for the future.
Abstract: SCUP defines integrated planning as a sustainable approach to planning that builds relationships, aligns the organization, and emphasizes preparedness for change. Over the past several years—and particularly in 2020—the world has experienced significant shifts in its sociocultural, economic, and political landscapes. How can higher education institutions use integrated planning to respond nimbly and flexibly to these changes? In this session, three college and university presidents from the United States, Canada, and Europe will reflect on how we can transform and reimagine higher education for the future.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
July 1, 2017

Eight Themes in Strategic Planning

Reflections from a Year of Focused Learning

Strategic planning and how higher education leaders use strategic planning to move their institutions forward are changing to remain relevant in today’s highly competitive and fast-moving environment.

From Volume 45 Number 4 | July–September 2017

Abstract: A year of focused learning on strategic planning at colleges and universities across the nation revealed eight key themes in strategic planning as well as how university leaders are using strategic planning to move their institutions forward and how strategic planning is changing. Strategic plans (1) have shorter time spans, (2) include goals in broad brush strokes, (3) have strong communication plans, (4) present their complex goals in simplified form, (5) use data, (6) distinguish their institutions, (7) are aligned with other plans, and (8) require strong leadership.

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