Quotation Seeber, Marco, Barberio, Vitaliano, Huisman, Jeroen, Mampaey, Jelle. 2017. Factors affecting the content of universities’ mission statements: an analysis of the United Kingdom higher education system. Studies in Higher Education. 44 (2), 230-244.


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Abstract

This article explores the factors affecting the content of universities’ mission statements. We conceptualize missions as identity narratives, a type of symbolic representation of an organization. Based on the literature on organizational identity we argue that universities need to address two major challenges when crafting their mission statements, (i) to pursuit legitimacy in spite of multiple and competing expectations, and (ii) to properly balance similarity and distinctiveness from other universities. We identify factors that affect this strategic effort and develop hypotheses that we test in the empirical context of the United Kingdom’s higher education system. Results show that (i) among competing expectations, universities choose claims that are plausible to external constituents and consistent with the values of internal members, and that (ii) they adopt claims similar to universities belonging to the same organizational form while differentiating from geographically closer universities in order to reduce competitive overlap.

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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Journal article
Journal Studies in Higher Education
Citation Index SSCI
WU-Journal-Rating new MAN-A, WH-B
Language English
Title Factors affecting the content of universities’ mission statements: an analysis of the United Kingdom higher education system
Volume 44
Number 2
Year 2017
Page from 230
Page to 244
Reviewed? Y
URL https://srhe.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/03075079.2017.1349743?needAccess=true
DOI https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2017.1349743
Open Access N

Associations

People
Barberio, Vitaliano (Details)
External
Huisman, Jeroen (University of Gent, Belgium)
Mampaey, Jelle (University of Gent, Belgium)
Seeber, Marco (University of Gent, Belgium)
Organization
Institute for Public Management and Governance IN (Details)
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