Call for Papers - Risk Management in Higher Education – Managing Academia in Turbulent Times

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Special Issue Call for Papers: International Journal of Educational Managementijemcover
Risk Management in Higher Education – Managing Academia in Turbulent Times

Guest Editors:     
  • Eric Cornuel, European Foundation for Management Development, Belgium & HEC Paris, France
  • Ulrich Hommel, EBS Business School, Germany & European Foundation for Management Development, Belgium
A. The Context
Higher education institutions are operating in an increasingly dynamic environment. Demographic shifts, rising market transparency and accountability, changing consumption patterns and the emergence of new competition are exposing the higher education sector to levels of risk never encountered before. Deregulation and new funding models are forcing presidents, deans and senior managers to embrace market challenges with the effect of further enhancing performance volatility. As a consequence, what has been said about management in general increasingly applies to higher education management as well: Institutions are managed well if they manage their risk position well. In addition, regulatory oversight bodies are beginning to acknowledge the need to align the intensity of supervision and control with institutional risk-taking.

Despite the high priority assigned to risk management in a practical context, the academic literature has largely ignored this emerging field of research so far. In the light of the impact of recent economic downturns on higher education and the concerns how continued turmoil in financial markets may put a considerable number of institutions into a state of budgetary distress, there is clearly a need to examine this issue more closely from a research perspective. Over the past two decades, risk management has developed into a vibrant field of research, in particular in finance and operations management. In contrast, the higher education literature on risk management is dominated by practice-based publications and still lacks an appropriate academic research foundation. The special issue intends to address this shortcoming.

B. Purpose
The purpose of this special issue is to advance the understanding of the specific nature of risk management in higher education institutions. With this perspective in mind, this Call for Papers seeks to expand knowledge in this area and provide a discussion forum for researchers in higher education as well as business & management. It presents a unique opportunity for researchers to gather and explore previously untapped synergies between these so far largely separate areas of research.
The special issue invites conceptual and empirical papers, presenting cutting edge research on risk management in higher education. Papers may be theoretical or applied but should in all cases have a clear relevance to risk management practices in higher education.

C. Research Questions

This call seeks contributions on any aspect of risk management in higher education. Papers can for example focus on:
  • Risk management methodologies and risk management performance
  • Financial and operational risks (and the interaction between them)
  • Incentive issues, governance and regulation
  • Strategic decision-making and risk taking
Suggested questions to be explored include (please note that these questions are only intended to serve as examples and are not meant to restrict submissions in any way):
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of risk management methodologies currently used in the higher education sector?
  • What is the relationship between financial performance and competitive positioning of higher education institutions?
  • How effective are different governance models in controlling risk-taking behaviour of senior management?
  • What is the impact of internationalization on risk-taking behaviour of higher education institutions?
  • How are different trends (e.g. demographic change, changing funding models, rising market orientation, managerialism, shift towards blended/online/distance learning) affecting performance volatility and financial health of higher education institutions?
  • What is the impact of deregulation and privatization on risk taking in higher education?
  • How can established risk management methodologies of the corporate sector (e.g. Cash Flow at Risk) be used to measure and mitigate risk exposures in higher education?
  • How is regulatory oversight impacting risk-taking behaviour of higher education institutions?
  • What are the need and scope of risk-based regulation of the higher education sector?
We welcome submissions of high-quality papers on all topics related to risk taking, risk management and risk regulation in a higher education context. They may use any type of higher education institution as a focal point (universities or subunits thereof such as business schools, public or private, non-profit or for-profit). Contributions can develop theoretical frameworks, synthesize the existing body of knowledge, present strategic problem-solving applications or offer empirical evidence. Successful submissions will employ accurate methodologies and develop their arguments on the basis of rigorous analysis.
D. The Journal
The International Journal of Educational Management provides those interested in the effective management of the educational process with a broad overview of developments and best practice in the field, with particular reference to how new ideas can be applied worldwide. The journal contains material relating to innovation in educational management across the spectrum, the development of educational delivery mechanisms, and the creation of an environment in which the management of resources provides the most efficient outputs achievable on an international basis to allow the sharing of new initiatives. Each article is submitted to a double blind-review process to ensure that academic integrity is maintained

To be considered for publication in this special issue, manuscripts must be received by February 15, 2013. Submissions must comply with the author guidelines for this journal:

Expressions of interest to submit a paper and other queries should be sent directly to the special issue co-editor, Ulrich Hommel (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).