By Deanna de Zilwa

As clocks struck hour of darkness at the thirty first December 2009 asserting the sunrise of a brand new decade, amidst the jubilation of a brand new starting we paused momentarily to re?ect at the decade that had simply prior. It was once a dif?cult period for plenty of humans and firms. Many have been plagued by conflict, terrorism, famine, ?re and tsunamis. First-world electorate loved possibilities to chill in a technologically pushed n- vana. humans on streets, trains and planes from London, Tokyo to big apple sported the white ear buds of iPhones as de rigueur adornments. The speed and depth of our lives now turns out to run at warp pace, we rush from appointment to appoi- ment swigging vitamin-enhanced mineral water obsessing approximately ?uctuations in our physique mass index and the Dow Jones index in equivalent degree. but as participants we will decide to settle for or reject a few of these adjustments. people with suf?cient ma- rial assets can cocoon themselves in high-security fort houses or relocate to more secure, extra tranquil environs, or perhaps remodel themselves due to Botox and a talented plastic health care professional. but a few organizations do not need the posh of volition, they can't decide on no matter if to just accept or reject the impacts of environmental alterations. one of those service provider that has discovered itself positioned in environments which are more and more complicated and turbulent are educational devices (departments, faculties and schools) in lots of publicly funded universities around the world.

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Selection of the Case Studies This was a self-funded research project that meant that the number of units in the sample, numbers of academic disciplines and numbers of types of universities were all restricted. Yet my goal in selecting the sample case study academic units was to try and make the sample as heterogeneous as possible. This study comprised 16 case studies of academic units. There were four aspects to the diversity of the sample. First, to investigate whether units from different academic disciplines responded to their environments in different ways; the sample comprised academic units representing different academic disciplines.

51). The research problem is complex because there are many factors that have the potential to influence how case study academic units choose to respond to environmental changes. These factors include characteristics of an academic unit’s internal environment such as its academic discipline, demographic characteristics of its staff such as age, gender, seniority, the particular culture, history, resources and management and decision-making style of the unit. In addition it is possible that other factors such as the relative power and status of the unit within the university and the nature of the relationship with the university’s executive managers and the type of 20 2 Research Design and Methods university that the unit is situated in could potentially affect how units respond to external pressures.

Conventionally Commonwealth government operating grants provided to universities included funding for increases in staff and salary costs. After 1996, academic units had to fund pay increases awarded to staff as a consequence of new enterprise bargaining agreements (AVCC, 2002). A common strategy used by academic units to reduce expenditure was hiring ‘cheaper academic staff’ – reducing the number of full-time tenured senior academics and replacing them with part-time, contract, casual and more junior academic staff.

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