Leading and communicating change in an engineering faculty merger
Holopainen, Krista; Holopainen, Timo; Kallio-Gerlander, Jaana; Norström, Anne; Roslöf, Janne (2019)
Jens Bennedsen, Aage Birkkær Lauritsen, Kristina Edström, Natha Kuptasthien, Janne Roslöf & Robert Songer
Julkaisun pysyvä osoite on
Holopainen K., Holopainen T., Kallio-Gerlander J., Norström A., Roslöf J., (2019). Leading and communicating change in an engineering faculty merger. Jens Bennedsen A. (Ed)., The 15th International CDIO Conference : Proceedings - Full Papers., CDIO Initiative.
Higher education institutions (HEIs) have been exposed to several change drivers during the past few decades. The global expansion of higher education together with the financial cuts in several countries have caused structural and organisational changes on different levels. In addition, the general requirements on the efficiency of public organisations, so-called New Public Management, are connected to the trends of developing the organisations and management policies in HEIs more towards entrepreneurial or corporate cultures. Successful implementation of these change processes challenge the change management and communication skills of the managers and leaders of the institutions. Communication is a vital element of leading a change successfully towards the defined vision. This concerns also the change and development processes facilitated by the CDIO Initiative. Similarly, Turku University of Applied Sciences (TUAS) has undergone a number of changes in the recent years and the change is still ongoing. One of the central elements of the most current change was to merge two faculties to form a new Faculty of Engineering and Business. This case study analyses how this organisational change process of TUAS was actualised and communicated in the internal documentation and presentations during 2016–2018 in relation to the so-called eight-step change management model presented by Kotter (1995/2007). The analysis found elements of the first six steps in the data, however the last two steps need a longer timespan to realise. As a conclusion, it seems that the Kotter model is a viable tool to assess leading change also in the HEI context.