How can UK universities make the best decisions?

Blue binary code
23 Feb 2013 12:53:22.253


Universities face an increasingly competitive higher education sector and need to make better use of business intelligence, delegates will hear at a conference at The University of Nottingham.

To be able to respond to the changing higher education landscape, universities need to exploit all available data across hundreds of different measures – from student applications to alumni engagement.

A free conference at The University of Nottingham will be the first in the UK to look at the use of university-wide performance monitoring and reporting practices.

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Effective use of data

The event, ‘Dashboarding for Peak University Performance’, takes place on February 26-27th.

The conference is aimed at people in universities responsible for the effective use of data to monitor and report on performance – whether relating to student applications, admissions, quality, satisfaction, achievement or employment outcomes; or measuring and reporting on what matters in terms of research, financial sustainability, alumni engagement or philanthropy.

The programme features four case studies including the Universities of Nottingham, Warwick and Arizona State, the latter of which is widely regarded as the North American university that is the most advanced and influential in this area.

Changing behaviour

Conference organiser Dr Tom Loya, Director of the University of Nottingham’s Planning and Management Information Division, said: “UK higher education is coming late to what most businesses have seen as a ‘bread and butter’ activity for a long time.

“Given what it takes to develop a robust capability to acquire, manage, report and effectively distribute performance data in a way that really changes behaviours – and the imperative for universities to do this – I think we can expect to see major efforts to improve in this area across the sector. But many may struggle to do this in good time or successfully, if at all.

“For those universities that do move strongly towards a more performance-aware approach to management and leadership, these may well entail significant changes in culture and practice.”

More than 120 university staff from 55 universities are expected to attend, representing every mission group and region in the UK. Attendees are also expected from HESA, SUMS, JISC and other sector organisations.

More information on the conference programme is available here.

Dr Loya added: “The ultimate goal is for universities to be able to acquire and use large amounts of data, then process, present and deliver it in a way that allows them to be sure the right people understand their institutional performance in a way that drives decisions and changes in behaviour.”

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Notes to editors: The University of Nottinghamhas 42,000 students at award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. It was ‘one of the first to embrace a truly international approach to higher education’, according to the Sunday Times University Guide 2013. It is also one of the most popular universities among graduate employers, one of the world’s greenest universities, and winner of the Times Higher Education Award for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Sustainable Development’. It is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 75 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong and the QS World Rankings.

More than 90 per cent of research at The University of Nottingham is of international quality, according to the most recent Research Assessment Exercise. The University aims to be recognised around the world for its signature contributions, especially in global food security, energy & sustainability, and health. The University won a Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education for its research into global food security.

Impact: The Nottingham Campaign, its biggest ever fundraising campaign, will deliver the University’s vision to change lives, tackle global issues and shape the future. More news…

Story credits

More information is available from Dr Tom Loya, Director, Planning and Management Information Division, University of Nottingham, on +44 (0)115 9513121,
Tim Utton

Tim Utton - Deputy Director of Communications

Email: Phone: +44 (0)115 846 8092 Location: University Park

Additional resources

More information on the conference website

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