Higher education industrial uniqueness features

Higher education industrial uniqueness features.

Public and private sectoral differences

are also evident in higher education, but the differences are mitigated by certain requirements

common to all sectoral higher education institutions. Before discussing this mitigating factor, key

differentiating factors warrant discussion. First, the same issue with regard the financial accounting

differences for public and private institutions exists at the higher education level of the education

industry (Cottrell & Baker, 2013). Additionally, the need for for-profit organizations to earn a

profit and to enhance shareholder value is a primary sectoral differentiator. Given this pressure to

turn a profit, only a few publically-traded education institutions still exist (Smith, 2016).

Notwithstanding the sectoral differentiators, higher education institutions are considered to be

interdependent organizations in that they are influenced heavily by external organizations such as

accrediting agencies. Such agencies seek to ensure the quality of institutions, but they tend to

make them more standardized and to emphasize what they feel is necessary for an institution

(ASHE-Eric, 2001). Regardless of the sectoral orientation of institutions of higher education,

accreditation affects education leaders’ and other stakeholder’s ability to strategically change to

meet the dynamic nature of the environment. Although organizations other than higher education

institutions do not have the constraints that come with meeting accreditation standards, other

sectoral realities serve as constraints, some of which are discussed in the pages that follow as the

black box is opened to discuss the inner workings of a sectoral enterprise that impact strategy.

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