In the list of ten strategic actions directed at the strengthening of the research universities in the United States, there are two that I would like to discuss in this report. Firstly, the action that recommends increasing the cost-effectiveness and productivity of the research facilities is one of the vital measures that could enhance the performance of the affiliations throughout the country (The National Academies par. 8). This action is tightly connected to the leadership of the educational facilities that has been one of the frequently discussed issues in the field of operations management.
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The researchers agree that the productivity in higher education can be increased significantly using rearrangement of the leadership strategies applied there; in other words, transformational and situational leadership is to be integrated with the fixed and inflexible structure of the educational institutions with strict top-down management hierarchy (Bryman 2; Parke and Pehlke 1; Shah 10). Since this strategy targets people as the key factor of the progress facilitation, job satisfaction, and motivation among the employees are to be maintained at a high level. That is why this action can be initiated by the gradual restructuration of institutions for the purpose to decentralize their leadership and provide more flexibility to the departments and individuals from the lower levels of management. Due to this, the institutions will begin to function with more autonomy, and that will increase the motivation of the employees. However, putting this strategy into practice might be rather difficult because the organizational culture of the educational institutions has been based on the centralized leadership model for generations (Parke & Pehlke, 2015).
The second action for discussion is the investment in the infrastructure of institutions, and especially in their equipment (The National Academies par. 8). Modern education begins to rely on modern technologies more and more. Providing researchers and educators with free access to the latest technologies, the government ensures the successful functioning and rapid development of research and higher education. Moreover, the cyber-infrastructure of the educational institutions includes its operations management systems and software responsible for the optimization of the processes held within the organizations.
That way, the two discussed actions are interrelated as the improvement of the cyber-infrastructure of the institutions will facilitate and stimulate their productivity and cost-effectiveness. Taking into consideration the modern composition of the national and global workforce that demonstrates a steady tendency towards the domination of the Millennials (people aged 15 to 35) as the main demographic segment, the improvement of technological reliance of the research and educational facilities is highly important (“Characteristics of the Millennial Generation” par. 2). The generation of Millennials that is about to take over the leadership and management positions within the next 10-15 years has grown up in the cyber world and needs to transfer their skills to their career fields. In other words, the improvement of the cyber-infrastructure of the institutions is an inevitable tendency everywhere in the world, and the nations that accomplish this mission sooner will end up having the nest resources and attracting the largest amount of young talent.
To conclude, I strongly agree with the two actions mentioned above and believe that their implementation will result in multiple benefits for the research and educational facilities in the United States and give the country a big push forward to it can reclaim its leading position as the generator of new knowledge.
Bryman, Alan. Effective Leadership in Higher Education. 2007. Web.
Characteristics of the Millennial Generation. 2006. Web.
Parke, Lauck, and Joy Pehlke. “Get on the Train or Get Out of the Way: A Passing Glance at Transformational Leadership.” The Vermont Connection 25.5 (2015): 1-3. Print.
The National Academies. For future prosperity, U.S. should strengthen efforts to maintain world-class research universities. 2012. Web.