Higher education resilience

Helping higher education institutions navigate change, complexity and uncertainty and build their future readiness.
The tertiary education sector is facing unprecedented disruption over the next decade as a result of a series of converging trends, including:
  • Changing geopolitical dynamics.
  • Technology advances (such as artificial intelligence and machine learning) changing the skills that employers desire (and therefore educational needs).
  • Asian universities competing for international students (rather than supplying them).
  • Online education including high quality courses from top Universities (e.g. MIT in the USA).
  • An increase in employer acceptance of micro-qualification.
  • Social changes including increasing student resistance to education related debt.

Examples of our work

Resilience in the College of Arts and Sciences, University of Oregon


Organisational resilience is as important to the University sector as it is anywhere.

Globally, the sector is experiencing marked shifts in enrolments with rapid growth in international student numbers. Standard tertiary markets are also being challenged by competitors providing MOOCs (mass online open courses) while cyber-security represents an ongoing threat to day-to-day operations. Universities also face potential disruptions created by such things as natural disasters alongside those created by people (i.e labour disruption and damage to reputation). An awareness of these and other ongoing risks has led the University of Oregon, to proactively understand how well placed it might be in the context of potential disruption.

The Office of Safety and Risk Services at the University of Oregon is actively seeking to better understand the current landscape of resilience within their largest College. The College of Arts and Sciences is the University’s largest College. It is made of three division containing over 40 separate departments spanning the sciences and arts, and is home to around 1900 staff. Using our benchmarking tool and processes, we are working with the College to gather a baseline of organisational resilience. This will enable the University to identify where excellence exists and where challenges present, so they can proactively work to build resilience across the College.

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