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Faculty opinions on emerging corporatization in public Universities in Kenya

In order to independently and sustainably implement their functions in response to reduced capitation from government, public university management is embracing corporate culture, which has been traditionally associated with the private sector. Given the complexity of the university system, this paradigm shift may find itself at variance with increasing intra-democratisation and quality assurance requirements. This article discusses faculty opinions on corporate management of public universities in Kenya bearing in mind their quest for world-class status. A survey design was used to collect data between 2009 and 2010 based on 16 total quality management indicators derived from literature review and corroborated by faculty who teach in the School of Business at Kenyatta University. From a target population of 300 registered alumni of the Kenya DAAD Scholars Association, 45 questionnaires were completed and received back. Findings show that academic faculty generally lack the sense of belonging and feel marginalised when it comes to key decisions that directly affect them. As such they work for survival’s sake and not out of passion. Such work culture would inevitably undermine quality assurance in service delivery. This article argues for deliberate investment into symbiotic relationships between university management and faculty, as a way of reversing this trend in work ethics.

Keywords: Change and Corporate Management, Higher Education, Kenya