Key Capabilities: Exemplary Management Practices

Effective and innovative management practices will be crucial, from strategic planning and implementation to developing our human capital to making smart and judicious use of our financial resources. Organizational structures will promote interdisciplinary and collaborative efforts.

Transition to the Responsibility-Based Budget System (RBB) was made during the past year, and FY 2011 represents the first year of full implementation. Such a major transition is bound to be disruptive under the best of circumstances, and the combination of budget cuts and information systems that were not adequate to the task created significant uncertainty and anxiety across academic and administrative units. The need for timely and accurate information will continue to be critical, both for operation and strategic improvement of the system.

Beyond recovery from the birth pangs of RBB, there is a critical need for assessment and resolution of any misalignments with the University’s priorities and strategic goals. The coincidence of the launch of the Path to Prominence and the implementation of RBB has caused some confusion and conflation of these within the University community, and there remains a need to distinguish them clearly in the public mind.

Further, while we continue to emphasize interdisciplinary and collaborative scholarship and have launched a number of University-wide institutes since embarking on the Path to Prominence, the distribution of resources and responsibilities to colleges does not automatically support such efforts, nor other critical University-wide priorities, services and academic support programs. Workable and sustainable financial models for these institutes and for centralized and cross-cutting functions remain a critical need.

Working toward the University’s broad goals while exercising financial responsibility at the unit level represents an important leadership challenge. As with faculty and staff development, development of a diverse array of current and potential University leaders will be critical to meeting these challenges now and in the future.