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Using The Baldrige Criteria To Reengineer Higher Education

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1997 Annual Conference


Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Publication Date

June 15, 1997

Start Date

June 15, 1997

End Date

June 18, 1997



Page Count


Page Numbers

2.485.1 - 2.485.7



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Henry A. Wiebe

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2242

Using The Baldrige Criteria To Reengineer Higher Education

Henry A. Wiebe Engineering Management Department University of Missouri-Rolla Rolla, Missouri 65409


Higher education has been the target of much criticism. Various groups have been quick to point out the failings of all educational institutions from primary schools through institutions of higher learning. State legislators have been stepping in with their own solutions to perceived problems. This “call to change” has not been limited to the educational community as various industries have carried out a variety of reorganization, downsizing and merger attempts in order to remain competitive. Some of the techniques used in the business community are now finding their way into institutions of higher education. Two of the most notable are reengineering and total quality management. Both these processes call for higher education to “go about its business” in a new and more effective way.


Reengineering is commonly thought of as a total “rethinking” of the organization and its processes. Hammer and Champy (1) in their introductory book define reengineering as “...the fundamental rethinking and radical redesign of...processes to achieve dramatic improvements in critical contemporary measures of performance such as cost, quality, service and speed.” The National Academy of Public Administration expands this definition of reengineering to “...a radical improvement approach that critically examines, rethinks and redesigns mission product and service processes within a political environment. It achieves dramatic mission performance gains from multiple customer and stakeholder perspectives. It is a key part of a process management approach for optimal performance that continually evaluates, adjusts, or removes processes.”

These definitions make it clear that when one speaks of reengineering, one speaks of a major overhaul of the organization. Legitimate questions follow. Does higher education need such an overhaul? Or does the institution that has served society well over the years simply need to weather the criticism currently being aimed its direction?


Wiebe, H. A. (1997, June), Using The Baldrige Criteria To Reengineer Higher Education Paper presented at 1997 Annual Conference, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 10.18260/1-2--6888

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