Focus on Inclusion and Communication

We welcome input and comments at any time from the KU community. During the strategic planning process in 2010–2011, input mechanisms included discussion boards, email, and direct contact to steering committee members or members of the EEE (51 KB PDF), DDI (50 KB PDF), ESPI (63 KB PDF), and EDE (47 KB PDF) work groups.

From the outset of the strategic planning process in October 2010, we have emphasized open and transparent communication with the KU community as a priority. We communicate what we do regularly and in a variety of ways:

  • Provost eNews;
  • Strategic planning web pages;
  • Local media; and
  • Regular visits by Provost Vitter to faculty and/or staff meetings in all departments, designated centers, and other major organizational units on campus.

Transparency, frequent communication, and multiple opportunities for input from the KU community are essential elements in building a strong and vibrant plan. The steering committee, work groups, and the summit planning groups comprise over 160 distinct individuals. Each of those individuals served and serve as an informal ambassador to colleagues and as a resource to his or her own campus unit.

Additionally, there were several direct ways in which faculty, staff, students, alumni, and external partners got involved in the strategic planning process. The KU community has truly responded to the call:

  • 705 individual responses were received in September and October 2010 when asked for input on learning goals;
  • 47 departments and schools and several non-academic units convened unit-wide meetings in November and December 2010 to discuss and forward their prioritization of the learning goals;
  • Five focus groups of alumni and students met to give further input to prioritization of learning goals;
  • Every department on campus had a representative designated to help determine which data needed to be collected and to advise on the design and implementation of the Faculty Activity Reporting System, now called Professional Records Online (PRO);
  • The College and every school, as well as several research centers, contributed a list of their areas of emphasis to give the KU community a synopsis of their interests, which could be consulted by individuals interested in nominating strategic initiatives;
  • Focus groups on scholarly engagement with faculty and community business leaders met throughout February 2011;
  • Town hall meeting in February 2011 on the strategic initiative process, combined with informational coffee conversations shortly thereafter, gave all those interested an opportunity to discuss possible strategic initiative nominations;
  • 1,664 responses were received for two KU community surveys of enabler goals in March 2011 that stemmed from discussion board inputs in January, February, and March;
  • Town hall meetings in March and April 2011 discussed the four work group recommendations;
  • The discussion board on preliminary ideas for strategic initiatives served as a resource to the KU community to propose and vet ideas and make connections;
  • Nominations for strategic initiatives (due February 28, 2011) were solicited from all faculty, staff, and students as well as organizational units. We received 104 proposals involving 968 distinct participants. For purpose of transparency, the process and objectives were shared in the November 30, 2010 Provost eNews and via an online nomination form (33 KB MS Word doc);
  • Input by external experts on the strategic initiative nominations and opportunities for the KU community to weigh in on their input were held in March and April 2011;
  • The deans worked collaboratively using these inputs to recommend strategic initiatives to the steering committee in April 2011;
  • The four strategic initiatives hosted all-day KU-wide summits on November 20, 2011, December 2, 2011, January 20, 2012, and January 27, 2012 in order to build the intellectual community around the topic and to discuss priorities and areas for investment; over 225 individuals participated in each summit.
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