SAgE draft vision and mission

In January I noted that a major project this year will be to renew the SAgE vision. The current vision is now several years old, and the world has moved on apace since that time. Moreover, the results of REF2014 will be known later this year, so it is a good time to think about whether our vision and strategy are fit for purpose. We will thus be looking at the overall University strategy early next year once the REF results are known. Hence we have the best part of  a year to firm up on the SAgE vision so that it dovetails with the overall institututional vision as we update our ‘Vision 2021’ document.

Faculty Executive Board met for an away-day in late March to discuss and debate our new vision, assisted by Craig Smith from Flint Consulting ( Our aim was to produce a brief draft document that outlined our initial thoughts on where we want to be ten years hence. The result, on a single side of A4,  can be found here. The key statement is the BHAG or ‘Big Hairy Audacious Goal’, originally proposed by James Collins and Jerry Porras. It is a single medium-long term goal that is likely to be externally questionable, but not internally regarded as impossible.

Consonant with the BHAG, we spent some time thinking about our core ideology, namely our core values and purpose. Our core values define what we are really passionate about, rather than what we write in the glossy brochures! Finally, we unpack the BHAG by providing a more vivid description of our envisioned future.

So what do you think? It is important to note that this is very much the starting point rather than the finished product. We want everyone in the faculty to contribute to the process, and to this end Heads of School and Heads of Unit will be ensuring that these thoughts are shared and discussed widely within academic units over the summer. The plan is to continue these discussions through to the start of the autumn semester, and then to hone our thinking with a finished product in time for the calendar year-end.


About stevehomans

Professor Steve Homans is a structural biologist with an international reputation in the study of biomolecular interactions. He obtained his first degree and DPhil in Biochemistry at Oxford University, and secured his first academic position as Lecturer at the University of Dundee. In 1998 he received the Zeneca award from the Biochemical Society and was elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. Prior to his current appointment he was Dean of the Faculty of Biological Sciences at the University of Leeds. Professor Homans brings extensive expertise of academic leadership and management, with a particular emphasis on organisational change.
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