LEADERSHIP AND PROJECT MANAGEMENT EDUCATION FOR NEXT GENERATION ACADEMIC STAFF LEADER
In recent years, it has increasingly become required that academic staff members should serve as executors of university reform. In particular, these staff are expected to analyze adverse university conditions, devise workable remedies, and make sure their remedies are effectively implemented. As a result of these demands, improving the quality and developing the abilities of academic staff members have become increasingly important. Consequently, awareness of the value of continuing self-education has never been greater. Once considered a luxury, academic staff members now truly gain additional skills in graduate school and/or participate actively in educational conferences.
In Japanese institutions of higher education, development of the academic staff members' abilities is called Staff Development (SD), and it is expected to be actively practiced. As a working example of Japanese SD, a leadership educational program has been designed for mid-level staff members in order to develop the next generation of university leaders. Over the course of two years, a three-day-long training program has been carried out a total of eight times. The curriculum consists of three domains: lecture, project, and practice.
The presented research covers all three domains. Participants receive project management education lectures and master this systematic knowledge which stretches from the starting of a project through to its conclusion. Next, they undertake a project that consists of solving a problem their university faces; in the process of planning and carrying out this project they bring innovation to their office. Finally, they practice forming a team and involving various stakeholders to maximize the success of their project. Some examples of projects in this program are: "A project promoting local job activation through collaboration of students, faculty members, and staff", and "An effective art management project in a university hospital". As a result of this lecture-project-practice approach, participants were able to acquire problem solving skills, team building skills, and leadership skills, bringing new value to their offices.