Strategic planning for the Department of Genetics, Stellenbosch University

Zaahl, Monique (2012-12)

Thesis (MBA)--Stellenbosch University. 2012.


Strategic planning has become part of higher education institutes (HEIs) in the late 1990s. Even though several authors disagree on the merit of strategic planning in HEIs, the challenge is to use planning well and wisely. The need for strategic planning exist due to a constantly changing environment, e.g. an increased demand for tertiary education, a decline in government funding and the changing demographics of students. In this research report, a strategic plan for the Department of Genetics at Stellenbosch University was formulated. Following a literature review of strategic planning in higher education, a contextual overview of the institute is conveyed and subsequent analyses of the internal and external environments. The research design included engagement with all relevant stakeholders (staff members, students in the department and the Dean and faculty manager of the Faculty of AgriSciences). The department also serves students in the Faculty of Science and secondary data was obtained from both faculties for analyses. Five strategic themes were identified for the department. These themes contribute to the sustainable growth of the department as well as the overall strategic direction of the institute. The strategic themes were prioritized for implementation to commence in 2013. The key to successful execution of the strategic plan in the department is related to strong leadership, inclusion of all staff members and students and by encouraging creativity and innovation. The identified strategic themes also aims to alleviate, in part, some of the challenges faced by the South African government in higher education and, if successful execution occurs, will prove to serve the society as a whole.

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