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Acceptance versus passive resistance : how academics in a higher education institution make sense of strategic change

Kogel, M.M. (2021) Acceptance versus passive resistance : how academics in a higher education institution make sense of strategic change.

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Abstract:Building on sensemaking and strategic change literature, this research explores the factors triggering academics at HEIs to either engage in or resist strategic change implementation. The study was conducted at the University of Twente (UT), which has recently introduced a new university strategy. 29 full-time academic staff members in different positions from all faculties were interviewed using semi-structured interviews. The obtained data was analyzed applying inductive and deductive content analysis. Academics engaged in change accepting behavior or passive change resistance. Chance accepters were more likely to have a positive change perception whereas passive change resisters were more likely to have a negative change perception. 16 sensemaking influence factors were identified, either contributing to a positive or negative change perception. The predominance of positive or negative sensemaking influence factors was critical for academics’ change perception. The key contributions are the identified context-specific sensemaking influence factors relating to two types of change responses and practical implications for the HEI management on how they can use communication to achieve change accepting behavior. Moreover, the results lay the ground for future research on strategic change implementation in HEIs.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/88219
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