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Guest Talk

Prof. Dr. Heather Eggins

Strategic Decision Making in Uncertain Times

A UK study of higher education institutions

Portrait photo of Prof. Dr. Heather Eggins © Heather Eggins​/​private
Prof. Dr. Heather Eggins (Staffordshire University, UK)

Each month brings further uncertainties, of both a global and national kind, which affect higher education. The global economic outlook is by no means stable, and the coronavirus and climate change are adding to uncertainties.

UK universities have found themselves caught up in changed, and unexpected circumstances, following the decision of the 2016 referendum to leave the European Union. Not only are there uncertainties generated by Brexit, in terms of loss of academic staff, loss of European students, and loss of research funding, but also institutional financial worries and strikes in relation to pension provision, and concerns at the fierce competition for home students at a time when the 18 year old cohort reaches its lowest level, leading to fewer students than hoped for on some campuses.

This seminar examines the range of uncertainties as perceived by Vice-Chancellors and Chairs of University Councils who are tasked with maintaining and assuring the financial stability of their institutions. It examines the strategic decisions institutions have been forced to make, and the ways in which university Councils have responded to the challenges of their present situation.

Heather Eggins is a Fellow Commoner at Lucy Cavendish College, University of Cambridge and Visiting Professor at Sussex University and Staffordshire University UK. She works on higher education policy and is particularly interested in the impact of government decisions on higher education, access issues, quality, and gender. Her latest publications are H. Eggins, editor, The Changing Role of Women in Higher Education (Springer 2017 ), and  a chapter in L. Weimar and T. Nokkala, editors, Universities as Political Institutions – HEIs in the Middle of Academic, Economic and Social Pressures (Brill 2019).

Wednesday, 27 May 2020, 4.00–5.30 p.m. | Online
Center for Higher Education (zhb)
Professorship of Higher Education

Location & approach

The campus of TU Dort­mund University is located close to interstate junction Dort­mund West, where the Sauerlandlinie A 45 (Frankfurt-Dort­mund) crosses the Ruhrschnellweg B 1 / A 40. The best interstate exit to take from A 45 is "Dort­mund-Eichlinghofen" (closer to Campus Süd), and from B 1 / A 40 "Dort­mund-Dorstfeld" (closer to Campus Nord). Signs for the uni­ver­si­ty are located at both exits. Also, there is a new exit before you pass over the B 1-bridge leading into Dort­mund.

To get from Campus Nord to Campus Süd by car, there is the connection via Vogelpothsweg/Baroper Straße. We recommend you leave your car on one of the parking lots at Campus Nord and use the H-Bahn (suspended monorail system), which conveniently connects the two campuses.


TU Dort­mund University has its own train station ("Dort­mund Uni­ver­si­tät"). From there, suburban trains (S-Bahn) leave for Dort­mund main station ("Dort­mund Hauptbahnhof") and Düsseldorf main station via the "Düsseldorf Airport Train Station" (take S-Bahn number 1, which leaves every 15 or 30 minutes). The uni­ver­si­ty is easily reached from Bochum, Essen, Mülheim an der Ruhr and Duisburg.

You can also take the bus or subway train from Dort­mund city to the uni­ver­si­ty: From Dort­mund main station, you can take any train bound for the Station "Stadtgarten", usually lines U41, U45, U 47 and U49. At "Stadtgarten" you switch trains and get on line U42 towards "Hombruch". Look out for the Station "An der Palmweide". From the bus stop just across the road, busses bound for TU Dort­mund University leave every ten minutes (445, 447 and 462). Another option is to take the subway routes U41, U45, U47 and U49 from Dort­mund main station to the stop "Dort­mund Kampstraße". From there, take U43 or U44 to the stop "Dort­mund Wittener Straße". Switch to bus line 447 and get off at "Dort­mund Uni­ver­si­tät S".


The H-Bahn is one of the hallmarks of TU Dort­mund University. There are two stations on Campus Nord. One ("Dort­mund Uni­ver­si­tät S") is directly located at the suburban train stop, which connects the uni­ver­si­ty directly with the city of Dort­mund and the rest of the Ruhr Area. Also from this station, there are connections to the "Technologiepark" and (via Campus Süd) Eichlinghofen. The other station is located at the dining hall at Campus Nord and offers a direct connection to Campus Süd every five minutes.


The AirportExpress is a fast and convenient means of transport from Dort­mund Airport (DTM) to Dort­mund Central Station, taking you there in little more than 20 minutes. From Dort­mund Central Station, you can continue to the uni­ver­si­ty campus by interurban railway (S-Bahn). A larger range of in­ter­na­tio­nal flight connections is offered at Düsseldorf Airport (DUS), which is about 60 kilometres away and can be directly reached by S-Bahn from the uni­ver­si­ty station.


Interactive map

The facilities of TU Dortmund University are spread over two campuses, the larger Campus North and the smaller Campus South. Additionally, some areas of the university are located in the adjacent "Technologiepark".

Campus Lageplan Zum Lageplan