Re-thinking the Management of Higher Education Institutions: Transformational Leadership
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The study attempts to examine the management of higher education institutions in Kenya and it explores how challenges facing universities can be dealt with an aim of keeping up with contemporary trends of management and enhances quality and responsiveness. The sample included two public and two private universities which were selected on the basis of their proximity to Nairobi and availability of information. Twenty participants from four universities constituted the sample. Four female and four male lecturers: four deans: four chairmen/ heads of departments: four heads of Information Communication and Technology (ICT) participated in the study. Questionnaires were used to collect data. A documentary and content analysis was done and a field study carried out on management of higher education institutions out in March 2009.This paper explains the legal framework within which universities operate and it assesses how universities in Kenya are managed and the extent to which information technology is used as a tool for effective management of complex operations as necessitated by increasing populations. The study was guided by the following research questions: 1. How are universities in Kenya managed? 2. What are the challenges that universities face? 3. How can university management be changed to suit economic and social changes? The paper attempts to shed light on how higher education institutions can apply corporate knowledge management practices and carry out management by results to support every part of their mission. I argue that there is need for higher education institution to focus on consistent and coherent practices in the systems and procedures that are followed, which means that quality assurance should be undertaken in the context of the institutional strategic plan, these will assist in dealing with challenges and constraints facing higher education institutions.