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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Editorial From: International Journal of Educational Management, Volume 28, Issue 6
Dear colleagues, welcome to the penultimate issue of Volume 28 which contains eight papers on a wide variety of subjects from authors around the globe-from the USA, Dubai, Hong Kong, Thailand/Iran, Australia, China and the UK.
In the first paper, Girard Tulay of Penn State University, Altoona, and colleagues from Valparaiso University, Indiana have produced work on university brand equity. The subject is popular today and the authors recognise that in the highly competitive marketplace branding is a possible solution as a sustainable strategy. Perceived quality of faculty seems to be the most important brand equity dimension followed by university reputation and “emotional environment”.
In the next work, Masood A. Badri and Jihad Mohaidat of the UAE University, Dubai and the Abu Dhabi Education Council write on parent based school reputation and loyalty. The paper reports the findings of a survey of 806 parents from schools in Abu Dhabi-the United Arab Emirates. The paper builds on the work of Skallerud on measurement of school reputations.
The third paper is by Philip Hallinger and colleagues from the Hong Kong Institute of Education, and reports on leading school change in China. The purpose of the study is to explore how Chinese school leaders successfully respond to the implementation of educational reform. In the paper one city in China is used to assess how school leaders perceive their roles and actions in fostering successful change.
The “student as customer” concept is considered by Boonlert Watjatrakul of Assumption University Bangkok, in particular how students’ intentions to study at university is affected. The results indicate that students believe that the universities’ adoption of the “students as customer” concept will lead to the improvement of the universities’ service quality and the degradation of educational quality in terms of the instructors’ neglect of teaching, the impairment of student/instructor relationships and course achievement.
The paper by Fatemeh Hamidifar (Assumption University, Bangkok/Islamic Azad University Tehran) concentrates on the challenges facing managers at an Islamic university. The results reveal that the main challenges could be categorised into internal and external factors. The former were sub categorised into administration and managerial affairs, financial issues, organisational culture and students’ affairs. External challenges were sub-categorised into political, economic, social and technological factors and international/national competition.
Angelito Calma of the University of Melbourne deals with challenges in preparing academic staff for research training and supervision in the Philippines. The country has a national priority to develop university research and there is a graduate skills deficit. In all, 53 government and university executives assisted in the research which identified that the most critical challenges for government and universities in the Philippines relates to meeting the dual demands of teaching and research, building a bank of researchers and developing excellent research skills and competencies amongst staff and students.
The next paper comes from the respected Hechuan Sun of Shenyang Normal University with colleagues from Shengyang and the University of Malaysia. The subject chosen is the study of effective principal leadership factors in China. The purpose of the study was to establish what are the effective school leadership indicators that Chinese teachers expect and explains why these factors are important for effective school improvement. From the study Chinese teachers expect that a good school principal should not only possess good managerial skills in time management and day to day work, but should also possess good emotional intelligence and human skills.
Lucill Curtis and Martin Samy (Essex University and Leeds Metropolitan University respectively) investigate whether UK business schools should be more business like to ensure survival in today's climate. Historically business schools have been income generators but perversely financial pressures are changing this. The purpose of the paper is to determine whether business schools should adopt a more business-like approach without compromising the quality aspects of their education. The paper shows a number of key strategic issues as well as opportunities that can be taken by business schools. An important factor is that whilst schools might increase the quantity of students they did not want it to be at the expense of diluting the students’ experience in terms of employability and quality.
Eric C.K. Cheng and John C.K. Lee, from The Hong Kong Institute of Education, discuss strategies to develop communities of practice (CoP) to improve teaching in a school context. The application of these strategies to develop a CoP in schools involves designing a reflective and collaborative learning content, as well as monitoring, regulating and streamlining the learning process, and this paper contributes an empirical framework to the research of CoP and practical guides for school leaders to facilitate knowledge sharing in CoPs.
In the final paper, Amber L. Stephenson from Temple University Harrisburg and David B. Yerger of the Indiana University of Pennsylvania discuss brand identification and alumni donations. As colleges and universities bear the burdens of decreasing government funds, increased operating costs and waning alumni financial support, they are turning to business-like practices such as branding. Brands are now being used as a mechanism to increase engagement of alumni and potential donors. This study examines the effects of brand identification, or the defining of the self through association with an organisation, on alumni supportive behaviours.