Over 100 people attended the October 10, 2013 panel presentation on the use of data to support strategic planning. Facilitator Mike Dooris (Office of Planning and Institutional Assessment) led an interactive discussion with panelists Michael Gilpatrick (Smeal College of Business), Victoria Sanchez (Educational Equity), and Michelle Stine (AIS Business Intelligence and College of Arts and Architecture).
Penn State budget executives are currently leading the development of strategic plans for the 2014-15 through 2018-19 cycle. Unit submissions are due to the provost by July 1, 2014. Penn State has been as deeply committed to strategic management as any major university in the United States, with an ongoing, institution-wide program dating to the early 1980s. The details have evolved over three decades, but the University’s basic approach has been fundamentally consistent; an enduring strength has been a commitment to evidence-based planning and management.
The provost’s June 14, 2013 guidelines to unit budget executives specifically call for “strategic performance indicators structured around unit level goals.” The memo notes that “Penn State will continue to monitor strategic performance indicators at the University level. All units are encouraged to continue to collect and monitor performance data, using indicators appropriate to unit-level context, mission, and goals.”
In this session, the panelists shared their thoughts on ways in which colleges, campuses, and administrative units can use data (from a variety of sources) to help set priorities, assess performance, and inform decision-making.