The new university management is appointed now

The next phase in the university reform project is appointments and elections. The university is experiencing the largest structural changes in over thirty years.

Alt-tekstin paikka

Starting this August, a period of many decisions will begin in the reform project at the University of Helsinki. In the autumn, several new organs and operators will be established, such as the collegiate body, university board and a rector.

"The reform is historical for many reasons: it brings about major changes, it applies to all universities, and it has a very tight schedule. One of the most obvious changes concerns the university board, with a record number of external members to be included," says Ulla Mansikkamäki, project manager for the University of Helsinki reform project.

The university has not experienced such large and widely debated changes since the beginning of the 1970s, when the process of moving towards the current three-party administration model was launched. The pressure for change then came from the outside.

"The university can now organize its internal administration according to its own liking. The financial independence of the university will be the most important operational change. Our university already has experience in managing our own finances and holdings, which has made preparations easier," Mansikkamäki explains.

The building of the new organization will begin next week. The university collegiate body will confirm the number of members to be appointed to the new university board and their term of office, and decide on the nomination of candidates and the method of member selection. In the new Universities Act passed in June, the much debated board composition is defined to include a minimum of 40 per cent of external members. The first task of the new board will be to elect a rector from among the applicants later in the autumn.

"Autumn is always a busy time at the university, but this year it may be even more active and exciting than before," Mansikkamäki says, smiling.

The implementing act for the new Universities Act will enter into force on 1 August 2009, and the university will then begin the building of a new organisation according to the new Act. The operations of the university will conform to the new Act starting from 1 January 2010.

A more detailed schedule for the coming autumn

Text: Laura Tötterman
Photo: Helsinki university

Translation: AAC Noodi Oy

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