A fatal flaw in accountability programs is the fragmented university that leaves academic departments-the units most responsible for institutional results-out of the performance loop. Currently, decentralization fosters a disabling disconnect among societal concerns, institutional goals, and departmental aims, the three links of public accountability. How then can the culture of many research universities be transformed from provider-driven prestige to public-centered engagement? The answer is not to end decentralization but to add direction. Fixing the Fragmented University brings together a group of national experts in a discussion of different methods for fixing the fragmented university and changing campus culture. The book shows how the practice of strategic planning, priority budgeting, assessment and quality assurance, regional accreditation, and departmental performance reporting can enable large research universities to set priorities and pursue direction - all while preserving the decentralization that drive internal creativity and innovation.
Written for administrators, trustees, faculty leaders, and students in higher education, this book describes an effective research university as one focused on serving public needs rather than courting peer prestige. It brings together a group of national experts who present responses, from their disciplines, toward fixing the fragmented university and assisting it in becoming as devoted to undergraduate education and public engagement as it is to faculty research.