ERIC Number: ED189915
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979
Reference Count: 0
Organization Theory: Implications for Design.
Young, David A.
Administrator's Update, v1 n3 Win 1980
This paper outlines the possibilities for scientific inquiry into the design of the university organization structure. In a theoretical context, bureaucratic management techniques were not refined enough to apply to university structures until the mid-twentieth century. Universities today are bureaucracies in that they have a formal division of labor, an administrative hierarchy, and a clerical apparatus; but they do not have direct supervision and detailed operating rules for the principal workers (the faculty) as they do for other workers. The clients, or students, of a university are treated more as members of the organization than as outsiders. As institutional goals become better defined, the university can design work units that will meet these goals and provide maximum utilization for clients and workers alike. Research has established that role performance within departments improves when related functions are grouped, and when expert services needed for departmental operation are provided within the line organization rather than from detached staff units. A number of complex integration strategies of design are reviewed and discussed. Currently it is concluded that in the American university structure it is less likely to reflect design logic than to reflect temporary preferences for dispensing personal power and prestige. Designing better university organization structures can help ameliorate this problem. A bibliography is included. (DC)
Descriptors: Administrative Organization, Bureaucracy, Change Strategies, College Administration, Departments, Efficiency, Higher Education, Management by Objectives, Organizational Theories, Power Structure, Program Administration
American Association of University Administrators, P.O. Box 536, Oneonta, NY 13820 ($0.50)
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; Opinion Papers; Collected Works - Serials
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: George Washington Univ., Washington, DC. ERIC Clearinghouse on Higher Education.; American Association of Univ. Administrators, Oneonta, NY.