We cannot verify your location
Browse Book and Journal Content on Project MUSE

How Universities Work

John V. Lombardi

Publication Year: 2013

Witty and insightful, How Universities Work is destined to be an essential handbook for anyone working or hoping to work in a university. John V. Lombardi gives readers an insider’s view of the American academy, introducing them to the structure, logic, dynamics, and operational styles of both public and private institutions of higher education. Lombardi defines and describes all the bits and pieces that compose a university with remarkable economy—from budgeting systems to tenure, from the library to the athletic field. Although focused on research universities, much of the discussion applies to other types of post-secondary institutions. Ideal for students, this book will form a solid foundation for courses in higher education, but it will also be a welcome addition to faculty and administrators’ personal libraries.

Published by: The Johns Hopkins University Press


pdf iconDownload PDF (65.1 KB)
p. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright Page

pdf iconDownload PDF (62.2 KB)
pp. 2-7


pdf iconDownload PDF (55.7 KB)
pp. 8-9

read more


pdf iconDownload PDF (72.5 KB)
pp. ix-xiv

...This little book introduces the world of university management. Many people become involved with the management of higher education institutions. While they may have extensive experience with other complex organizations as well as having...

read more


pdf iconDownload PDF (70.4 KB)
pp. xv-xx

...University life off ers a remarkable opportunity to work with people of widely varying skills, abilities, and interests. Over the years, colleagues at Indiana University’s campuses, the Johns Hopkins University, the University of Florida, the University of...

read more

CHAPTER 1 Quality Engines

pdf iconDownload PDF (82.7 KB)
pp. 1-12

...Even though research universities demonstrate a bewildering variety in the details of their organization, all of them express a common institutional prototype. This prototype models the behavior of research universities as organizations, even...

read more

CHAPTER 2 Management

pdf iconDownload PDF (75.9 KB)
pp. 13-23

...This book is about managing universities with a special emphasis on research universities. Management is a technique, not an end in itself. Academics use a collection of tools and processes as they implement the values and achieve the objectives...

read more

CHAPTER 3 Critics

pdf iconDownload PDF (68.6 KB)
pp. 24-32

...While Americans love their universities, they also love to criticize them. Parents and citizens see the university or college as a provider of culture and values, and they worry that these institutions may not provide the right values and culture...

read more

CHAPTER 4 Characteristics

pdf iconDownload PDF (82.2 KB)
pp. 33-44

...Higher education in America is an endlessly complex industry. It has providers of all sizes and qualities operating within many different organization al structures with distinct governance models. These institutions have diverse missions...

read more

CHAPTER 5 Teaching

pdf iconDownload PDF (74.9 KB)
pp. 45-54

...Almost all American universities begin with teaching. Research universities have a major commitment to the exploration and development of new knowledge, but most organize their work from a base in teaching. The scale of the teaching...

read more

CHAPTER 6 Research

pdf iconDownload PDF (58.7 KB)
pp. 55-60

...Research defines the character and the quality of research universities. Even when research institutions teach thousands of undergraduate students, the quality of their faculty and the breadth and depth of their programs— graduate or...

read more

CHAPTER 7 Faculty

pdf iconDownload PDF (67.2 KB)
pp. 61-68

...Faculty represent a capital asset of the university. Following a business model, we might imagine that the buildings, equipment, books, and other tangible goods represent the university’s capital assets, and they do, of course. However, the university...

read more

CHAPTER 8 Finance

pdf iconDownload PDF (83.8 KB)
pp. 69-81

...While most university conversations focus on issues of academic substance— program content, research results, and curriculum issues, for example— almost every conversation carries a subtext about money. Universities use special words...

read more

CHAPTER 9 Budgets

pdf iconDownload PDF (90.9 KB)
pp. 82-95

...Money matters, as we have seen. Universities implement their values by how they spend their money. While many academics do not like to talk about money, preferring instead to talk about values, the basic structure of university life requires...

read more

CHAPTER 10 Measurement

pdf iconDownload PDF (112.7 KB)
pp. 96-114

...Universities collect data on a wide range of activities and functions. They count students, credit hours, faculty, and staff . They produce data on the bud get with income and expenditures, the number of graduates, the number of admissions...

read more

CHAPTER 11 Quality

pdf iconDownload PDF (81.9 KB)
pp. 115-125

...Quality is among the most elusive of academic measure ments. Everyone speaks about it, everyone is in favor of it, and most academics believe they know it when they see it. But when we ask for specific mea sures of quality for departments...

read more

CHAPTER 12 Managing Improvement

pdf iconDownload PDF (72.4 KB)
pp. 126-135

...Once built, a performance model focused on improvement requires an implementation plan. Often, models of effective operation produce elegant documents and much data but fail to engage the difficult task of implementation. University...

read more

CHAPTER 13 Support Services and Special Units

pdf iconDownload PDF (108.2 KB)
pp. 136-154

...Large universities do many things in addition to teaching and research. Support services have greatly expanded as institutions of all sizes find it essential to serve the special needs of their students, faculty, and staff. Institutions have specialized...

read more

CHAPTER 14 Regulation and Governance

pdf iconDownload PDF (105.3 KB)
pp. 155-171

...Competition and choices continue to defi ne the American university in the twenty-first century. Universities compete for every resource of significance from quality students to superior faculty, from state tax dollars to federal grants and contracts, and from corporate support to private funds...

read more

CHAPTER 15 Disruptive Change

pdf iconDownload PDF (92.9 KB)
pp. 172-186

...Universities and their many constituencies have a tradition and commitment to worry. In cycles of five to ten years, changes in the world, the expansion or contraction of U.S. and world economies, the dynamics of war and peace, the emergence of challenging cultural trends, and the development...

read more

CHAPTER 16 People

pdf iconDownload PDF (110.6 KB)
pp. 187-202

...Universities, like most of postsecondary education, are people enterprises. The strong structures of the American research university prototype, with its academic core and administrative shell, the critical requirements for money, the essential structure of bud gets, and the careful management of guilds...

read more


pdf iconDownload PDF (98.6 KB)
pp. 203-212

...An indication of the signifi cance of colleges and universities in American life appears in the endless stream of publications analyzing, criticizing, describing, and engaging every imaginable aspect of higher education. This flood of writing appears in the popular press, in scholarly journals, and in books published for experts...


pdf iconDownload PDF (720.2 KB)
pp. 213-220

E-ISBN-13: 9781421411231
E-ISBN-10: 1421411237
Print-ISBN-13: 9781421411224
Print-ISBN-10: 1421411229

Page Count: 160
Publication Year: 2013

Research Areas


UPCC logo

Subject Headings

  • Education, Higher -- United States -- Administration.
  • Education, Higher -- United States.
  • Universities and colleges -- United States.
  • Universities and colleges -- United States -- Administration.
  • You have access to this content
  • Free sample
  • Open Access
  • Restricted Access