December 22, 2003
"… approach to quality management is underpinned by a strong commitment to continuous improvement and a whole-of-organisation framework …"

There is now a whole book devoted to the way that managerial gobbledegook now permeates the world in general, and academia in particular. Read, for example, this report:

People were rocking with laughter; some were in tears. Deadpan, Don Watson waited. One audience member said later it was the funniest dinner of academic deans he had ever attended. But Watson was not joking. He was reading from a university mission statement and other material on its website.

"To provide outcome-related research and consultancy services that address real-world issues" - shrieks of laughter. The university's "approach to quality management is underpinned by a strong commitment to continuous improvement and a whole-of-organisation framework" - uproar in the room.

The university in question was RMIT but it could have been any of them. Go to your website and read the language, Watson urged guests at a recent Deans of Education dinner. That made people laugh even more. They worked at universities; they knew what he was talking about. Some of them probably even wrote this stuff. It was a surreal moment.

Thanks, as so often, to Arts & Letters Daily.

Posted by Brian Micklethwait at 11:28 AM
Category: Higher education