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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
April 26, 2022

The Future of Planning is . . .

. . . Aligned, Integrated, and Collaborative Institutional Effectiveness

IE professionals are both translators and integrators—and universities need these people who know how to interpret the data. Within the context of an IIE office, they assist in developing data-informed strategic plans, financial forecasts, enrollment plans, and other assessments of institutional efficacy.

From Volume 50 Number 3 | April–June 2022

Abstract: The institutions that will thrive in the future will be those that use high-quality, relevant mission-driven data as part of their strategic, integrated planning process. Because of this it is imperative to create integrated institutional effectiveness (IIE) offices that serve as the connective tissue among all units within a college or university. The data and expertise of institutional effectiveness can be leveraged to benefit the institution as a whole. In this article, we discuss the value of creating an IIE office and challenges associated with a centralized infrastructure.

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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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Blog

Published
March 17, 2022

Who Are Our Planners—and What Do They Read?

October 2021 marked Planning for Higher Education’s 50th issue! To celebrate, we’re looking back at earlier articles in Planning to reflect on how things change (and, sometimes, how they don’t). Planning is an essential resource for all higher education administrators, planning analysts, and theorists from many disciplines. In this post, the author describes each group of planners and identifies the types of information each group can glean from the journal articles.

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Conference Recordings

Published
July 16, 2021

Actionable Data

Creating Unit-level Dashboards to Drive Institutional Performance

This session will share how Binghamton University has established an integrated data collection and tracking process and the ways in which the pandemic has affected this process and shifted institutional priorities.
Abstract: Although many institutions have clear processes for collecting data at the institutional level, we often overlook unit-level data collection aligned with institutional metrics, resulting in hindered outcomes. In order to achieve institutional outcomes, we must collect actionable data on key performance indicators at different unit levels. This session will share how Binghamton University has established an integrated data collection and tracking process and the ways in which the pandemic has affected this process and shifted institutional priorities. Come learn from examples of departmental-, divisional-, and institutional-level dashboards and find out how to use them to inform planning and improve performance.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
September 14, 2020

Untangling the History and Procedures of Strategic Planning

We Review a Century of Literature for Answers

Almost since the time when the concept of strategic planning first appeared in the literature of higher education, its value has been questioned. Do strategic plans help institutions achieve excellence, or are they more likely to gather dust on a shelf? Perspectives are presented through a review of nearly 100 years of the history and theoretical basis for strategic plans.

From Volume 48 Number 4 | July–September 2020

Abstract: Is a strategic plan necessary for institutional success? In preparation for a new strategic plan at UTEP, we reviewed literature and found many publications that described the procedures of plan making and also case studies of how plans are produced. We also found substantial literature that questioned the value of strategic plans. These findings prompted us to think about the historical and theoretical basis for strategic plans: How did they emerge, what is their theoretical value, and is there a right way to do them? In our article we offer surprising answers to these questions based on a review of a century of theory and planning literature.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
July 1, 2018

Using Positive Turbulence for Planning and Change

As higher education leaders, we must take charge of our destinies and shape our industry by harnessing the forces of positive change using innovative, intentional approaches.

From Volume 46 Number 4 | July–September 2018

Abstract: Today we find our institutions barraged by the forces of change, and dutifully we respond. Over time, however, we end up molding our institutions to these forces to our own peril, and now U.S. higher education is on the ropes, so to speak. We believe education leaders should take hold of our destinies and shape our industry not by the forces of lackluster government policy, self-serving press and media, and for-profit mega corporations, but to serve true learning and personal growth. There are many tools we can use to lead change. This article introduces the concept of Positive Turbulence, an intentional, disruptive approach for positive change, to the education industry.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
April 1, 2017

Responsibility Center Budgeting and Management “Lite” in University Finance

Why Is RCB/RCM Never Fully Deployed?

Despite its promise of revenue generation, cost reduction, and a host of other benefits, what is it about RCB/RCM that leads universities to deploy it only partially?

From Volume 45 Number 3 | April–June 2017

Abstract: After its first application nearly 40 years ago, responsibility center budgeting/responsibility center management (RCB/RCM) is now in place at nearly 70 major North American universities. An unstudied fact is that despite its popularity RCB/RCM is rarely deployed to its fullest extent. Instead, it usually exists in parallel with conventional planning and budget models. This study asks why, instead of fully implementing RCB/RCM, universities have chosen to apply it partially. The study finds multiple explanations. On the revenue side, some universities hold back a portion of income to create funds that are used to underwrite institution-wide strategies or subsidize mission-central academic programs that cannot be fiscally sustained under RCB/RCM. In other cases, revenue is held back to fund shared “public utility” services, while in still others the practice of holding back revenue for allocation by some other means is due to difficulty in drawing a functional line between the “academic” and the “non-academic.” On the cost side, some universities have limited the application of RCB/RCM in order to limit market behavior and forestall “fragmentation” (Burke 2007). The study points to several problems in both the practice and theory of RCB/RCM. For example, models meant in theory to complement RCB/RCM may in practice compete with it or promote monopolistic behavior.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
October 1, 2009

Enriching Planning Through Industry Analysis

The authors perform an ‘industry analysis’ for higher education, using the five forces model of M.E. Porter.

From Volume 38 Number 1 | October–December 2009

Abstract: Strategic planning is an important tool, but the sole dependence on it across departments and campuses has resulted in the underutilization of equally important methods of analysis. The evolution of higher and postsecondary education necessitates a systemic industry analysis, as the combination of new providers and delivery mechanisms and changing social parameters gives rise to increased competition and innovation. This article tests the applicability of Porter’s five forces model to the higher education industry. While the model provides significant insight into the industry, it has been revised in this article to incorporate government as a prominent sixth force in the analysis.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
October 1, 2009

Culture, Context, and the Pursuit of Sustainability

Contemplating Problems, Parameters, and Possibilities in an Increasingly Complex World

No more ‘business as usual’; we must understand the importance of place and culture, and engage in our design work responsibly and with great innovation.

From Volume 38 Number 1 | October–December 2009

Abstract: Modern design and planning are routinely confounded by endemic conditions of deep fragmentation, rampant bureaucratization, and ineffective regulation. Such barriers hamper our ability to succeed in the execution of responsive, responsible, and superb ventures. Added to the mix are cost escalation, outdated technologies, cumbersome techniques, conservative posturing, and the damages of “value” engineering. In such a milieu, it becomes extremely difficult to move from concept through construction with clarity, continuity, and even integrity. Abandoned are often the inspiring, enduring, and delightful qualities that elevate buildings to Architecture. Innovative mindsets and methods must be realized to improve the quality of our built environments, especially considering resources are limited, expectations are soaring, and the need for change is non-negotiable. The author presents a holistic integrative framework for more successful and sustainable environmental design. Included are considerations of agility, fitness, diversity, and delight—aspects that loom large in equations for ingenuity in contemporary times.

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Planning for Higher Education Journal

Published
July 1, 1998

A Developmental Perspective on Planning

Traditional planning fails to consider the complex, unpredictable ways that institutions change and develop.

From Volume 26 Number 4 | Summer 1998

Abstract: Contends that most planners make assumptions about planning and about human and institutional ability to change, and that these assumptions necessarily impact the outcome of strategic planning efforts. Examines the functions served in planning comprehensive institutional change, and suggests that planning failures reflect too great a focus on technique and outcome. Applies the analogy of human development to illustrate the organizational life cycle, with an exploration of institutional "identity issues" – the physical, social, and psychological aspects, as well as the institution’s sense of self.

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