Welcome to the Faculty of Science Strategic Planning Blog

Welcome to the Faculty of Science Strategic Planning Blog

Thank you for visiting our blog. The Faculty of Science at the University of Alberta is developing a new five-year strategic plan. We need your help in creating a vision for the future. What should we be doing today to set the Faculty up for further success five years from now? Ten years from now? Let's be bold. Let's be creative. Let's create a plan that is challenging but realistic to achieve. Together we can chart a course that will engage our talented students, staff, and faculty members as we work to advance the frontiers of knowledge to the benefit of our community, province, country, and the world.

Please contribute your ideas and feedback. I hope to have all the input needed for the plan by the end of June, and then write the document over the summer.

Monday, 5 May 2014


A useful strategic plan should:

  • have goals that, if achieved, add value to the Faculty of Science;
  • be realizable, or at least have reasonable progress made, by the end of the planning term;
  • be strategic in that the goals build for the long-term; and
  • be realistic, especially in terms of resource requirements.
BHAG (Danny Chung: http://goo.gl/7Ki0D2)

A strategic plan should be challenging to achieve. Set goals that take effort to reach -- force us to go beyond what ordinary effort can accomplish.

With this in mind, I propose including in the Strategic Plan a number of BHAGs -- Big Hairy Audacious Goals. A BHAG should have sticker shock; something that seems impressive should we achieve it. My hope is that with the BHAGs we have a handful of high profile goals that we can agree will help position us as a stronger Faculty in research, teaching, service, and outreach.

Quoted in wikipedia: "A true BHAG is clear and compelling, serves as unifying focal point of effort, and acts as a clear catalyst for team spirit. It has a clear finish line, so the organization can know when it has achieved the goal; people like to shoot for finish lines." [Collins and Porras, Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies]

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