u etad dns n

also on the internal structure of the university system. D'Souza, L.0992)suggested that "Opportunities, threats and constraints in the external environment should be idmtifid. Among the factors in the external environment would be the economic, social, political, technological conditions and changes. To a certain extent these will affect all colleges and universities." The society or environment needs educated and trained manpower for manning different positions both for initiation of innovative processes and for exercise of surveillance. In fad, the university system is believed to be in a position to assure the required supply of trained citizens, leaders, administrators, teachers, doctors, technologists, managers, etc essential for better living standards understood both in the material and the intellectual sense. Thus, the environment shapes the purpose of a university. More specifically, the purpose of the university is the outcome of conflict and negotiation among powerful groups within and outside the university as it confronts the external and internal forces. The nature and extent of conflict and negotiation with the environmental forces or the university's responses to the environmental demands obviously depend on the university authorities' perception and interpretationsof the demands and their capacity to adjust. Information about the environment flows through formal, informal and nonformal channels. The university formulates its strategies considering all such information. Environmental analysis in the form of environmental scanning provides the stimuli. The universities must recoenize environmental " pushes and pulls to gain and hold environmental support. The very existence of a university is highly conditional on the clues and responses extracted from the environment. Hence, environmental analysis is essential not only for evaluating performance of a university, but also for diagonsing its failures and for introducing changes to enhance its future effectiveness.

not directly in touch with them in its day-to-day operations. These conditions are termed as the general environmental conditions. These conditions include : General Environment
(1) Technological Conditions

Technological conditions in the area of operation of any organization must eventually get into the organization and as organizations, universities are no exceptions. C.N.R. Rao (1989) remarked that "Wehave no choice other than to be abreast with the most up-to-date developments in science and technology. We would have to compete at least in some of the areas with the rest of the world, and at the same time identify those areas of special concern to us where, through the application of science and technology, we can make a signal contribution in solvislg the pressing problems, related to the needs of the common man." National Policy on ducati ion, 1986 asserted that "Emerging technologies are vital to national development in general and technological environment in particular. During the Sixth Five Year Plan, 14 areas of emerging technology, such as Micro-Processors, Environmental Engineering, Laser Technology, Water Resource Management, etc. were identified and financial suport was given to selected institutions to promote them." During the Eighth Plan, technology missions especially in the areas of Population Control, Construction Technology, Transport and Science Education have been launched. Hence, at the policy level, technological conditions influence the education system as a whole and the universities in particular.

Again, there is another important dimension of technological conditions. Technology is widely used in the universities to improve the quality of education and research. Besides teaching aids like Black Boards, Globes or Charts, modern equipments like Computers, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectrophotometer, Electron Spin Resonance Spectrophotometer, Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometer, HPLC, X-Ray Defractometer, Protein Analyser, Gel Segments of the Environment Electrophoresis, Ion Exchange Chromatography, The environment within which a university op- Cryostast, Tektronics Spectrum Analyser, erates comprises two different sets of elements - Fluroscence Microscope, etc. are now a days integeneral environment and specific environment. gral parts of university research laboratories. To There are some environmental conditions which af- establish networking arrangements between selectfect all classes of organizations irrespective of their ed universities and research laboratories/instituareas of activities. These conditions are potentially tions from all parts of the country, a computer data relevant for an organization but the organization is network with terminals for each is proposed to be



established so as to ensure sharing of information. This will promote interaction between researchers and academics all over the country. Besides, a project entitled INFLIBNET has since been formulated for networking of libraries. Even to improve the overall efficiency in the functioning of the universities, it is proposed to equip every university with a computer for maintenance of student records, accounts and other data required for administration and management. The situation is such that if a university fails to cope with the ever changing technological conditions, it will not survive. Hence, technological conditions are among the most important segments of the general environmental conditions of the university system.
(2) Legal Conditions

and Central Acts are honoured by all the universities.
(3) Political Conditions

Legal conditions are an important component of the general environmental conditions of an organiAfter independence, the political organizations zation. Universities are established through a legis- with a colonial legacy have always tried to interlative enactment, either in the central or in the state vene in the functioning of the universities. Student legislature. In that sense, universities are creatures Unions, Teacher Associations and Employee Orgaof law. Again, the legislature has got the authority nizations - all have got a 'mother organization' of to formulate and amend the Act of a university, if their own outside the university system. These necessary. A university is administered strictly in mother organizations operate so as to maximise accordance with its Act, Statutes and Ordinances. their political goals and objectives to capture power Thus, the state or the central government has got the and position and they use their university level orauthority to intervene in the internal administration ganizations as platforms, though Marx and Engles through amendment of the Act. To minimize the (1872) pointed out that "The Communists have not statutory differences among universities, the Edu- invented the intervention of society in education; cation Commission 1964-66 suggested that educa- they do but seek to alter the character of that intertion should be given a statutory basis by enforcing vention, and to rescue education from the influence an 'Education Act' universally applicable in all of the ruling class." The crux of the matter is that this states and union territories. This Act will replace all mechanism of intervention has remained an enigthe miscellaneous laws and will also provide statu- matic dogma. tory basis for certain important aspects of adminisAgain, universities are popular scapegoats of tration (e.g., Grant-in-Aid Code) which now exists merely in the form of executiveorders. A Model Act state level politics. In Bihar, there is a rumour that for the Indian Universities has been suggested by with every change of the chief ministership of the the UGC Committee Towards New Educational state, there must be changes in the post of vicechancellors of different universities. In its report, Management, 1990 though it is yet to be enforced. the AIU Committee of Elders, 1988 remarked that Despite its own Act, Statutes and Ordinances, a "These rumours were not completely without basis university is also liable to the general law and con- since it had happened several times in the past too stitutional laws of the country. Reservation of seats that Vice-Chancellors were changed alongwith the for admission for the backward class students in change of the Government or the Chief Minister in different academic departments is an example of Bihar. It is also commonly mentioned that no Viceconstitutional obligations of the universities. In the Chancellor (except one) of Patna University has thus matter of appointment of staff also, similar obliga- far completed his full term. There have been seventions are to be honoured. Besides, Labour Laws, teen or eighteen Vice-Chancellors in Patna UniverPayment of Wages Act, Provisions for Service Secu- sity since 1952. In L.N.Mithila University, ten Vicerity (Teacher)Act, P.F. Rules and similar other State Chancellors have changed office since 1978".

Political structure within which a university functions has a great impact on the university. Universities in India were first established in the Buddhist period. These classical seats of higher education helped a lot to preserve our ancient cultural heritage. However, this indigenous system, according to the Encyclopaedia of Social Work in India, Vol. I, "...lost its relevance in the nineteenth century after the English dominated education system was introduced." The British developed system of higher education in India was a response to the manpower needs of an imperial administration and the system produced a manpower pool which was totally alienated from the rest of the Indians.



(4) Cultural Conditions Culture, in the words of Tylor, (1924) is "that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society". Since culture is not amenable to quantitative analysis that has become characteristic of organizationenvironment interrelationship, a 'meaning oriented' frame of reference for organization is needed. According to Rawat (1963), "Ancient Indian Education has been evolved strictly on Indian epistemological and philosophic traditions" (p. 4). In the Upanishad period, "... on account of decrease in the level of marriageable age of girls, women education received a severe shock" (p. 36). In the post-Vedic period, the Aryans classified the society into four categories or Varnas. Brahmins took the responsibility of educating the people of the other castes. Kshatriyas were given a superficial knowledge of the Vedas, Vedangas, Upanishadas, Niti-Sastra and Artha Sastra. But "... still of greater magnitude and significance was the military training" (p. 45). Vaisyas were given technical education of agriculture, animal husbandry and trade. There was no provision of higher education for the Sudras. "The entire educational structure was pervaded by sacrificial rituals and religious ceremonies" where "Majority of the teachers were Brahmin priests" (p. 72). Hence, it is evident that (a) The system was Bramhin Dominated; and (b) Education for the lower castes and women was neglected. According to Raza, Aggarwal and Hasan (1985), the resultant "inequities in education stem not only from a moral commitment to the deprived but also from the viewpoint of nation-building. Human resource development strategy calls for maturation and optimal utilisation of all segments of the population" (p. 119). To reduce the scheduled and non-scheduled caste differentials in education, the union and state governments are extending various concessions, incentives and facilities to the backward classes even after 45 years of independence. Again, sustained efforts have been made since independence to extend education among women. Thus, educational establishments like the universities cannot keep themselves aside the cultural conditions as these conditions are in a position to shape the composition of student enrolment and the

government policies in relation to admissions and appointments. (5) Demographic Conditions Demography, being the statistical study of human population and distribution, has a direct and immediate impact on the universities within a country. Demographic elements like population size (total population, growth rate, etc), composition (age, sex, caste, religion), or distribution (urban, rural, etc.) have figured prominently in shaping the location, size, curricula, etc of the universities. Like other social institutional systems, the university system must constantly adapt itself to population changes produced by natural increase and migration. Needless to mention here that "Population size also plays a part in the quality of education" (Ford, T.R. and De Jong, F.G. 1970). Rapidly growing population due to high birth rate, lower death rate and the burden of migration from the neighbouring countries have contributed a lot to put a heavy burden on enrolment of the universities in India. Migration generates the most difficult problems for educational systems since its effects are multidimensional and immediate. Mass migration from the rural areas to the metropolitan towns, according to Sinha, (1980), "produces problems of crime, alienation, stress and social background; which in their turn drain out the vitality from the rural areas. The result is a dual society without any inner cohesion subject to a maximum of political instability". ~emogra~hic conditions like population-distribution mix etc are to be accounted for while deciding the location of a new university or altering the campus location of an existing one. Sinha (1980) pointed out that "The social and political tension in the present environment has to be eased by providing education to the eighty five per cent of people living in rural areas by establishment of universities with a rural bias so that mass migration of population to the big cities can be stopped leading to the twin evils of mass unemployment and creation of megapolis". There is another set of implications of demographic conditions on the university system. The policy of human resource development calls for the maturation and optimal use of all segments of population. But in reality, as Mathew, (1990) observed, "Three fold inequities dogged Indian Planning in educational development; they are regional, social






and gender inequities". Raza, Aggarwal and Hasan (19851, in this connection, pointed out that "As we move down from the high caste, male and urban in relatively developed regions to scheduled caste/ tribe's, female and rural in relatively less developed regions, the inequities become more and more sharp".
( 6 ) Economic Conditions

Due to the overall inefficiency and ineffectiveness of the different sectors, the rate of growth of the national economy is slow. Deficit budget being a usual phenomenon forces the economy to go for Economic conditions include the stage of the foreign loans from agencies like the LMF and the country's economic development (whether devel- World Bank. Again, due to the weak economic peroped or developing), national income, distribution formance of the different productive sectors like of national income, income per capita, demand for agriculture, industry or international trade, it is higher education in the employment market, etc. gradually becoming difficult for the country to pay Vaizey (1973, p. 58) observed that "As countries back even the interests on the loans taken. Naturalgrow richer, they devote a higher proportion of the ly, foreign agencies are imposing stricter conditions GNP toeducation". But when "...educational expen- for loan sanctioning so as to assure utilizational diture rises faster than the GNP, problems arise" (p. efficiency. The government, in its turn, is shifting 56). Developing countries like India, in the interest from a comparatively liberal policy of allocating of expediting economic development through edu- resources to the universities on the basis of the Ancation of the less affluent and disadvantaged people nual Revenue Budgets prepared or developmental at large, evolved a system of higher education where schemes submitted to them to a more performance- , the fee^ are low and the universities needed State based and quality-conscious procedure requiring UNIVERSITY NEWS, MONDAY, JUNE 27,1994

The economic conditions within which a university operates are perhaps the most important and significant component of the general environment as this segment has the capacity to determine the size, area of operation, structure, quality and quantity of output, etc. Universities are parts of the larger institutional system since as organizations, universities are not self-sustaining and depend mainly on the governmental agencies for the necessary resource inputs as the fees, charges and other commercial transactions of the universities are unable to meet their resource requirements. Universities replenish their resource requirements mainly from the governmental agencies like the UGC, Department of Human Resource Development, Department of Science and Technology, Department of Environment, State Department of Higher Education, Technical Education, etc and some other agencies or organaizations like the Indian Councils of Agricultural, Medical, Historical, Philosophical Research, etc. These 'departments, organizations or agencies provide maintenance grants, development grants or sanction research projects in different specific areas of study and research. Most of these departments, organizations or agencies are governed by the policies adopted at the central or state level considering the overall economic conditions of the country. Hence, the economic conditions are the most crucial determinant of the environment of a university.

subsidy. Since independence, the social demand for university education in India increased gradually throughout the plan periods due to growth of agriculture, establishment of new industries, improvement of basic services to the citizens like health, transport, communication, administration, etc requiring manpower with specific education and training. Hence, expansion and technological improvement pushed forward the demand for university education, the result being the rapid growth in the number of universities and tremendous increase in enrolment while the fees and charges were kept at a low level since the ability of a student to pay fees and other incidental expenses for books, materials, etc was very low. Thus, economic conditions, along with accelerating the increase in number of universities, also compelled the universities to accommodate the changing and varied demands by introducing new disciplines and updating curricula while retaining the fees and charges at a very low level. Consequently, universities. with huge financial requirements emerged as state-dependent parasites. Hence, the economic conditions of the country are primarily responsible for shaping the structures and processess the universities adopted. Again, poor financial ability of the government has restricted the number of institutions of higher learning while the demand for higher education, for many reasons, is ever rising. Pressure of enrolment, in the absence of the required structural reform, introduced bureaucratic conventions into the system. Thus, besides shaping the internal structure and processess, economic conditions also influence the institutional environment, including the organizational culture.


The aforementioned segments of the general environmental conditions influence all the different classes of organizations irrespective of their specific area of activity. Hence, these general environmental forces and factors must be perceived and understood as these potential constraints or opportunities can pose significant problems or open attractive growth and development avenues. Besides these general environmental conditions, universities operate within a specific environment as universities are special purpose organizations entrusted with the functions of teaching, research and extension. The specific environment of a university has an immediate relevance since it is composed of those specific organizations, institutions and individuals with whom the university has a direct and immediate linkage. Here linkage refers to the types of connections that exist among the organizations within the same field, termed as 'organization-set' (Hall, 1991). There are different types of linkages like flows or exchanges of resources, services, informa"Less financial dependence on the Government, tion, structural connections, etc. The most impormovement towards self-reliance, and insistence on tant attribute of a linkage is its multiplicity and a the universities, in the present economicscenario, to linkage can only be established, provided there is a achieve targets with less financial outlays through polarity in the interests of the organization-set since improved efficiency and productivity, optimizing a linkage is not lassoing of some unwilling parties. the institution's resources and encouraging greater A linkage is thus a two way understanding amongst involvement of the private sector, may sound radi- organizations within a particular set. The organizacal and even desirable, but it does not appear to tion-set of a university consists of the UGC, the Cenhave been envisioned and assessed by our planners tral Government, the State Government, Indian that, in the climate that exists in the country, how Council of Agricultural Research, Indian Council of much of it can be realistically achieved. Do the p r e Historical Research, Indian Council of Medical Rerequisites for pursuing such an approach exist in search, Indian Council of Philosophical Research, our country ? Can the cooperation of all the elements etc, the suppliers, recognized trade unions, affiliatinside the university and outside be assured to ef- ed and constituent colleges, libraries and research fectuate this policy? Even if implemented, how institutes, INSDOC, NASSDOC, Association of Inmuch would it really add to a university's resources dian Universities, International Association of Universities, etc. The organization-set of a university is in financial terms ?" illustrated in Fig. 1. It is evident that within the prevailing condiFrom the illustration, it is evident that a univertions of the economic environment, the government is introducing a commercial model of the university sity has a direct resource linkage with the UGC, the requiring very little or no governmental assistance. State and Central Governments, CSIR, Indian CounWith this end in view, the Government through its cils of Research and other research funding organiagencies is reducing grants to the universities and zations at the industry or business levels. There the universities with their huge financial require- exists a knowledge or information linkage with the ments are gasping for necessary resources. Thus, research institutes, inter-university consortiurns, liamongst the different segments of the environment, braries and documentation centres, other universithe economic conditions are now the most turbulent ties, colleges, and the knowledge users - industry,

performance evaluation and accountability on the part of the universities. The UGC, which emerged as a grant allocating agency is now emphasising the quality aspect in maintaining the standard of teaching, research, examination and evaluation, as well as internal administration. As an agent of the government, the UGC is not only enforcing quality assurance measures but is also restricting grants while pursuing certain alternative sources of finance from University-Industry Linkage, Consultancy, Enhanced Fee Structure, Endowments, Alumni Associations, etc. To reduce the burden of enrolment as well as the financial requirements of the existing universities, the government is encouraging open universities, correspondence courses or even privatisation of higher education. However, all such cost-effective and quality conscious measures are highly criticized by the university community since these measures and policies will introduce and enhance control over them. The Association of Indian Universities in its memorandum to the Ministers of Finance and Human Resource Development, Government of India in August, 1992 raised the following questions :

so far as the Indian universities are concerned.
Specific Environment


trade and commercial establishments. Again, there exists structural connections with the co~etituent and affiliated colleges, Board of Secondary education, Council of Higher Secondary Edqsation, Finance Department of the State Gcnremmmt, and many other organizations ed or nominated repr sented in the organizatiayls m of a wivemity. An analysis of-he i w t p of r&th&ips d my s #

nizations make decision under conditions o 'boundf ed rationality'. March and Simon observed that 'Uncertainty aboqption takes place when inferences are drawn from a body of evidence and the inferences, instead of the evidence itself, are then communicated" (p. 165). Thus, uncertainty absorption requires continuous collection, processing and comrnuniatio~ environmental information through of hatrodwingthe sy#em of environmental scanning.

Enviraummtal scanning i9 the systematic asot potential impact o it on sessment of information about the organizational f of a university. Thus, the external environment to identify strengths, weaknesses, opt b environment of a university is a source of decision portunities and threats (Morrison, et al., 1984). Within the present institutionalized set up of the making uncertainty. society, the educational institutions were designed Bnvironment M a Source of Decision Making according to the attitudes, values and beliefs of the u n c e society. Over time a change is observed in these Uncertainty can be defined as the lack of infor- forces calling for institutional, attitudinal and strucmation regarding future wezits and consequent tural modifications and adjustments. Societal attiunpredictabifityof the present afternativesof action tudes, values or beliefs are not static to remain conand their o u t c ~ ~ n{ s k h , D.J.,et al, 1971).Ac- stant for an indefiniteperiod of time. Deficiencies of eH cording to the ~ ~ l i r eo tQounded rationality' of the existing structural patterns are reflected in sociop i March and Simon (1958), organizations have a lim- economic problems like educated unemployment ited capacity of gatand pocessing informa- on the one hand and shortage of the required mantion as w l as of prediethg the amequences of power with appropriate skills and training, on the el various decision akcmativgd. Due t~ the copitive' other. In the absence o properly assessed enrolment f limits d rfw! organizational z l e c k i w r e , wga- - p1kk3, univ&sities are burdened with socially


Vnivefsity Grants Conmission State Government

Central Government Universities


Knowledge Users :


Board/Council of Secondary k Higher Secondary Education Constituent Colleges Recognized Trade Unions Local Authorities & Municipal Bodies

Fig. 1The Organization-Set of a University


non-productive students who are hopelessly adopting some irrelevant curricula having very little or no demand in the employment market. To bridge the gap, it is essential for the universities to collect environmental information so as to identify the emerging trends or issues and adjust the internal operations accordingly. Environmental scanning enables a university to collect information from the external environment in the form of trends and emerging issues so as to enhance the overall effectiveness of the institution through modifications of \ the internal structure and functions on the basis of identified trends and issues.

es of information, both internal and external to the university. Internally, information can be explored from the top level administrators, faculty members, students, researchers about the emerging trends and issues through personal interview. These internal sources are particularly important storehouses of information regarding teaching, learning, evaluation, curricula, library and laboratory facilities, research potentials, faculty quality, institutional policies and procedures, academic management, institutional growth prospects and problems, finance and budget, campus and building planning and management, hall and hostel administration, students' service and welfare measures etc. Internal Developing the Environmental Scanning Structure members could be interviewed personally to locate such emerging trends and issues as they believe will The first step in the process of introducing enviaffect theinstitution but at present are n t receiving o ronmental scannihg is the establishment of an envidue attention. ronmental scanning committee consisting o 5 to 12 f members (Morrison, et al., 1984). The function of External sources are mainly published docuscanning cannot be assigned to any particular de- ments like newspapers, magazines, journals, publipartment or outside contractors. The scanning func- cations of the agencies like the UGC, AIU, etc, detion must be inter disciplinary so as to achieve the mand charters and memoranda of the different widest appreciation of the potential interactions of teacher organizations, student organizations and emerging issues. The vice chancellor should appoint employee associations, declared economic and eduthe scanning committee so as to facilitate the com- cational policies of the central as well as state govmunication of the results of scanning throughout ernments, reports of the different education comthe institution and to assure that the results are missions, statistical records, advertisements for reincorporated into the decision making process. All cruitment in different jobs, etc. External sources are important positions of responsibility in the univer- to be considered to keep in touch with recent trends sity are to be represented in the committee to give it and issues in the external environment.Whether the a broad perspective and for obtaining the necessary sources of information are internal or external, the resources, recognition and acceptance. The commit- scanning process involves the following steps : tee should function as an advisory body of the Exec(a) Information source locating utive Council having the right to use institutional resources to implement a particular decision in an(b)Information selection ticipation of, or in response to, an emerging issue or trend it had located. The basic duty of the scanning (c) Scanning criteria determining committee is to locate the emerging trends and is(d) Scanning sues that may pose threats or open opportunities. The committee should explore new opportunities (el Consideration of scanning results from the environment wherefrom the university (f) Special action determining. may replenish its resource requirements.Hence, the issue of selection of members requires careful judgeEnvironmental scanning is a continuous proment on the basis of personal traits like initiative, cess and the results in the form of clippings or enthusiasm, dynamism, foresightedness, etc. 'xeroxed copies of articles, papers, statistical reports, etc are to be placed before the scanning committee The Process of Scanning for evaluation and determination of the future Gathering information from the external envi- course of action. The observations are to be strucronment about the important trends and issues rele- tured followingsome scientificmethod of documenvant to a university is the key function in the process tation. Scanning results in case of a university can of environmental scanning. There are various sourc- be classified into the following categories :



(a) Economic Trends Economic trends in relation to the national and regional economy, central as well as state governments' economic policies, rate of inflation, foreign debt, conditions of the investment market, foreign trade, fiscal policies, and overall conditions of the major sectors like trade, industry aad commerce are included in this category. (b) Technological Trends Recent trends in the technological advancement and their influence on the household, education, medical and engineering sectors, transport and communication systems, etc constitute the technological trends. (c) Legal Trends Constitutional amendments, legislative enactments, Supreme Court and High Court judgements in relation to the protection of rights of the students, researchers, teachers and nonteaching staff, the UGC rules and requirements constitute the legal trends of a university.

The above six major categories can be divided into a large number of sub-categories and each issue o trend in a statement form can be ranked accordr ing to their relative importance assessed on the basis of any one or a combination of the following methods : (1) Probability-Impact Charts Under this method, an issue or trend is evaluated on the basis of three parameters (Morrison, et al.,
1984) :

(a) Probability of an event's happening; -

(b) Impact of the issue or event on the operations of the university; (c). The ability of the university to anticipate, evaluate and respond to an emerging issue or trend or event.

The probability of event's happening, being the first parameter, is very easy to understand but difficult to estimate. An issue emerges only when its consequences are well recognized by a broader spectrum of the society a i d in particular, by those whom it will affect. Most of theissues are not clearly (d) Demographic or Manpower Trends and distinctly focused on a particular event. So, it is difficult to locate exactly when an issue has Population-mix, regional manpower needs, emerged or happened or the exact probability of its sectoral manpower needs, demand-supply mishappening. In practice, the probability of an event's match illthe employment market, etc are imporhappening is assessed on the basis of collective tant criteria of evaluating enrolment policies, judgements of the scanning committee members obcurricula formulation, research area determinatained through structured questionnaires or persontion and to be included in this section. al interviews and the opinions are quantified using (e) Social Trends various scales (for example, probability can range Social trends include the general tendency to- from 0 to 1). After obtaining the forecasts from all wards effectiveness of higher education, chang- the participants, the group average or median score ing individual values and attitudes of the stu- is calculated and probabilities are ranked accorddents, researchers, teachers, administrators and ingly. employees of the country as a whole and of a The second parameter evaluates the probable university in particular and their relative im- impact of an emerging trend or issue. Generally, a pact on educational choices, job preference, scale of 0 to 10 is used to quantify the range of work culture, professional ethics, etc. answers. Positive and negative impacts are distinguished by and signs. Responses from individ(f) Political Trends ual participants are collected through structured Changing political views and ideological be- questionnaires or personal interviews and group liefs, use and misuse of power captured through averages or median scores are calculated. The group politics, politicalization of religious and caste averages or medians are then ranked and a rank sentiments, unhealthy electoral practices, disin- order list is prepared which shows the participants' tegrating movements, communalism and re- combined opinion about the relative impact of an gionalism, etc are the major political trends hav- issue. ing some immediate or ultimate effect on the The results of the probability-impact chart are education system.
' + I ' I -



calculated on the basis of weighted positive and negative importances. The product of the average probability and th;? average positive or negative impact of an event is the weighted importance of an issue or trend or event. From the rank order list of the weighted importances, the relative probabilityimpact of a particular issue or trend can easily be assessed.

The figure shows that the initial issue of 'Reduction o Research Grants' has three first order imf pacts: 'Reduction of Contingency Grants to the R e searchers', 'Delay in Repair and Maintenance of Plants and Equipments' and 'Reduced Purchase of Books, Journals and Abstracts'. The first order impact of 'Delay in Repair and Maintenance of Plants and Equipments' has the second order impact of Wastage of Time and Energy of the Researchers'. (2) Impact Networking Again this second order impact has the third order Under this method, an impact network chart is impact of 'Extension of Research Projects or Partial prepared which is nothing but a pictorial represen- ~ o k p l e t i o of Research Work within the Stipulated n tation o the complete analysis of an issue on the T m ' This third order impact has the ultimate or f ie. basis of its potential impacts on the future develop- fourth order impact o 'Rejection of Research Prof ments of the key issues of a university. Impact net- posals or Schemes by the Sponsoring Agencies'. work is developed through identificationof the posAfter fourth or fifth order impacts of an initial sible effects of a given issue or trmd or went as is described in ~ i ~ u2.i e issue have been identified, the first orckr impacts
from external Scarcity of Chemicals and Stationary items

Reduction o f

Delay in Repair & Maintenance of Plants 8r Equipments


W-go of time and -gyof the Rewuchm


Extension of Research projects or partial completion of research work within
the stipulated time

propos~ by Sponsoring Agencipa

Fig. 2 Impact Network: An Example ,UNIVERSITY NEWS, MONDAY, JUNE 27, 1994

are considered as the initial issue and the same process is repeated to locate the whole range of second order impacts. In general, fourth or fifth order impacts explore almost all the possibilities. After the identification of the important trends or issues and short listing them into a rank order, it is necessary to prepare forecasts fer goal setting. However, the function of environmental scanning comes to an end with the enlbtiag d important trends or issues and shortlisting tbtn according to their relative importance. ,..Environmental scanning, lea&* &bfamuiation of alternative scenarios acc various pushes and pulls and ultimatdy goading universities to remain on their toes for averting untoward factors and forces and cashimrg in on the opportunities showing up, albeit only as faint signals.A close view of the environment helps the adrninistrators of a university to size up the futurity of events under conditions of risk and uncertainty. In other words, environmentalscanning sda to delve deep into the externalities and internaliriod bf a university so that the administration rernaitm alert to take the required measures in proper time. In addition to the benefits derived from hindsight,environmental scanning provides insights into factors and their relationships for improving the planning process itself, sensitively responding to the new forces developing in the environment, sharpening the tools of anticipation and dodging the paths posing threats of various kinds. Environmental scanning helps proactive administration to appreciate the nature of the forces and it may underline diversification, divestment or simply status quo ante, after examining the behaviour in practice of all the factors dealt with in the strategic plans. Thus, through environmental scanning, universities can establish better linkages with the environment and take advantage of emerging possibilities.

6. Hickson, D.J., Hinings, C.R., Lee, C.A., Schneck, R.E., J.M. (1971),"A Strategic Contingencies Theory and ,P of Intraorganizational Power", Administrative Science Quart d y , 16, pp. 216-219. 7. Katz, D. and Kahn, R.L. (1966),The Social Psychology of Organizations, New York, Wiley. 8.March, J.G. andsimon, H.A. (1958), Organization,New York, Wiley. 9.Mux,K.and Engles, F. (18721,Manifasto of the Communist Party, Second Revised Edition (1977),Progress Publishera, Moscow, p.55. 10. , A.(19901,"Perspectives on Inequities in Eduh % Bo f.ePm", I s m d af Eduadwd Planning and A1Uinidmt&m, VeL 4, No. 2 April pp. 61-83. ,

.. 11.Momism, J L ;Rentro, W.L.; and Boucher, W.I. (19841, Futures Raseardr and the Strrbegic Planning Process: Implications for Higher Education, ASHE-ERIC Higher Education a h n t n D.C.; ASHE. Research Report No. 9, W s i g o ,
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