News Releases

UWI Launches New Five-Year Strategic Plan

For Release Upon Receipt - May 24, 2007

St. Augustine

The University of the West Indies (UWI) Strategy Committee will next week reveal its new Strategic Plan for the period 2007-2012. The preparation process for the new Strategic Plan, which was launched by UWI Vice Chancellor Professor E. Nigel Harris on May 1, 2006, has been an all-inclusive process, with participation from thousands of persons.

“The leadership of the University is extremely pleased with the commitment, enthusiasm and effort of the many persons who participated in this inclusive planning effort,” stated Prof. Harris, who personally wrote to members of staff, as well as prime ministers and various ministers responsible for tertiary education, inviting a wide range of inputs.

The new Strategic Plan is in keeping with the University’s enduring mission to propel the economic, social, political and cultural development of West Indian society through teaching, research, innovation, advisory and community services and intellectual leadership. The Plan outlines four Core Strategic Focuses: Teaching and Learning; Research and Innovation; Graduate Studies; and Service to the UWI-12 Countries and Other Underserved Communities. The Plan also identifies six Priority Enablers: Transforming the Administrative Culture and Processes; Strengthening Regionality; Strengthening National Engagement Processes; Marketing and Branding; International Partnerships; and Funding the Enterprise.

The steering committee established to oversee the entire planning process consisted of several members of executive management, together with the chairpersons of five Planning Task Force (PTF) Groups appointed after consultation with the Campus Principals and the Pro Vice Chancellor for the non-campus countries. Two consultants with extensive experience in facilitating strategic planning processes were also engaged to assist with the exercise.

As chairpersons of the PTF Groups, Professor Andrew Downes (Cave Hill Campus), Professor Alvin Wint (Mona Campus), Dr Hamid Ghany (St Augustine Campus), Professor Neville Duncan (University Centre) and Dr Vivienne Roberts (UWI-12 Countries and the Outreach Sector) managed an extensive stakeholder-engagement process, which included online surveys, country consultations, face-to-face meetings with staff of academic and administrative departments, face-to-face meetings with individual and small groups of departmental heads, Town Hall meetings with large groups of staff at all levels, focus group meetings with undergraduate and graduate students and guild representatives, meetings with representatives of ministries responsible for education and tertiary education matters, as well as meetings with private sector organisations, professional bodies and community-based organisations.

The ratification of the new Strategic Plan in this year is especially significant as it coincides with the celebration of the sixtieth anniversary of The University of the West Indies. In the six decades since its founding, the University has evolved into a large, publicly-funded institution with three campuses, a combined enrolment of almost 40,000 students and an annual output of some 6,600 graduates, a transformation that has been essentially a response to complex forces of change of a social, political and economic nature. The University is committed to providing the populations of the region with access to high-quality academic programmes that help to build strong individual, national and regional capacities in response to the dynamic forces of the globalised, twenty-first century environment.