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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