Contemporary University Strategising: The Financial Imperative

25 Pages Posted: 9 Jan 2013

Date Written: February 2013


This paper examines the financially focused strategies now evident amongst institutions competing for space in the global higher education system. In their search for increasing financial self‐sufficiency, universities and other higher education providers are examined for their primary competitive strategies. The study provides comprehensive evidence of their cost and operating efficiency strategies, facilitated by increasingly pervasive financial performance accountability systems. The primary operational strategies of teaching and research are found to have been transmogrified into strategies of customised education and research that is primarily focused upon and measured in terms of its funds generation. These trends contribute to complex performance management and accountability challenges as universities’ senior managers balance their internal financial ambitions with the expectations of external stakeholders, while simultaneously projecting sanitised imagery through corporate public relations strategies.

Keywords: financial management, efficiency, accountability, research funding, education massification, customised education

Suggested Citation

Parker, Lee D., Contemporary University Strategising: The Financial Imperative (February 2013). Financial Accountability & Management, Vol. 29, Issue 1, pp. 1-25, 2013, Available at SSRN: or

Lee D. Parker (Contact Author)

RMIT University ( email )

124 La Trobe Street
Melbourne 3000
#61399255542 (Phone)
#61399256524 (Fax)

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics