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Joint University Administration and Services to be evaluated by an external reviewer

An assessment of Malmö University’s Joint University Administration and Services (gemensamt verksamhetstöd) will be carried out this year. The aim of the assessment is to establish guiding principles, recommendations for continued development and a common vision of the institution’s goals.

“As a fully accredited university with increased research funding, it’s important that our administration and services function in an effective way that is in line with Strategy 2022,” said Vice-Chancellor Kerstin Tham.  

Tham initiated the assessment, which will be undertaken by Associate Professor of Pedagogy Jörgen Tholin. Tholin has extensive experience in conducting reviews both for the government as well as the Association of Swedish Higher Education Institutions (SUHF). He has also served as Vice-Chancellor at the University of Gotland, Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the University of Borås and University Director at Gothenburg University.

His task, according to the Vice-Chancellor’s official decision, will be to describe how current activities at Malmö University “address previous decisions to create joint administration and services while maintaining a local presence”. The aim of forming the University’s Joint University Administration and Services was to “enhance quality by developing common working methods.”

On the basis of interviews and reviews of various internal documents, Tholin will also “identify how future services will be developed” and compare administration and service activities at Malmö University with corresponding efforts at other universities.

The written report is to be submitted to the Vice-Chancellor no later than October 1, 2019, and will contain suggestions for guiding principles, recommendations and a proposal for target goals that are in line with Strategy 2022.

“As with all evaluations, the main purpose of the review it to enable us to increase the quality of our organisation in the long term. We need to know whether our joint administration and services are structured in the best way so that our education and research is run as efficiently as possible and with the highest quality possible.”

The last review of this kind was conducted seven years ago when Agneta Bladh (former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kalmar and State Secretary at the Ministry of Education) received this assignment from then-Vice-Chancellor Stefan Bengtsson.

Bladh's review resulted in six recommendations and three proposals for models for organisational change. Based on this review, the University's board of directors decided to implement one of the proposals, resulting in the formation of Joint University Administration and Services in 2015.  Subsequently, further administrative changes have taken place - for instance the establishment of a University Executive Office (merging pervious departments) as well as reducing the number of Faculty Offices from five to three.