The notion of strategic actorhood (Krücken & Meier, 2006) is now commonly accepted in the higher education literature. This concept is part of what the authors label as the organizational turn in higher education in which higher education institutions (HEIs) have become 'real', 'autonomous' or 'complete' organizations.
To benefit even better of the potential of the concept of actorhood, I argue, it is necessary to (a) look at a broader range of organizational actions and communications; and (b) increase our understanding of the dynamics of the strategic processes and activities that HEIs engage in. It would therefore be fruitful to connect the central element of accountability to the broader literature on legitimacy, identity and image. By doing this, it will become clear that HEIs are not only answerable for performance, but can actually actively employ a wide range of strategies and tactics to sustain their survival.
Krücken, G. & Meier, F. (2006). Turning the university into an organizational actor. In G. S. Drori, J. W. Meyer, & H. Hwang (Eds.), Globalization and organization: World society and organizational change (pp. 241–257). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Jeroen Huisman is professor of Higher Education at CHEGG. He holds a Master's degree Educational Studies, University of Groningen, the Netherlands (1991) and a PhD in Public Administration of the University of Twente, the Netherlands (1995). In 2005, he was appointed professor of Higher Education Management at the University of Bath, UK. In 2013, he was granted an FWO Odysseus project at Ghent University. His main research interests are: organizations and organizational change, organizational diversity, internationalization and higher education policy.
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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.
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".Zum Lageplan