Reviewing the effectiveness of the governing body adolygu effeithiolrwydd y corff llywodraethu
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Reviewing the effectiveness of the Governing Body Adolygu effeithiolrwydd y Corff Llywodraethu. Allan Schofield Key Associate, Leadership Foundation. This Session. Introduction and context. ‘Effectiveness for what?’: the need to clarify the primary roles of a governing body.

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Reviewing the effectiveness of the Governing Body Adolygu effeithiolrwydd y Corff Llywodraethu

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Reviewing the effectiveness of the governing body adolygu effeithiolrwydd y corff llywodraethu

Reviewing the effectiveness of the Governing BodyAdolygu effeithiolrwydd y Corff Llywodraethu

Allan Schofield

Key Associate, Leadership Foundation


This session

This Session

  • Introduction and context.

  • ‘Effectiveness for what?’: the need to clarify the primary roles of a governing body.

  • Trends in governance structures to enhance effectiveness.

  • Reviewing governing body effectiveness: the LF/CUC Effectiveness Framework.

  • The future: generic challenges to governing body effectiveness.

  • Questions and discussion.


2 effectiveness for what the need to clarify the primary roles of a governing body

2 ‘Effectiveness for what?’: the need to clarify the primary roles of a governing body

  • Genuine differences of view remain about the roles of the governing body in HEIs.

  • Effectiveness goes well beyond governance codes and statements of responsibilities – important as they are.

  • Effectiveness is about ‘how governing bodies work’ as well as ‘what they do’.

  • The need for clarity about primary roles underpins all aspects of governance including structure, board engagement, understanding accountability in practice, etc.

  • Boards need to understand the differences of view about role amongst their membership.


Reviewing the effectiveness of the governing body adolygu effeithiolrwydd y corff llywodraethu

Three Primary Purposes of Governance in HEIs


3 trends in governance structures to enhance effectiveness

3 Trends in governance structures to enhance effectiveness

  • Greater diversity in governance: the different jurisdictions; Privy Council flexibility; private providers; etc.

  • Substantial innovation: smaller boards; fewer committees; lead governors; performance orientation; powers to remunerate; possible two tier approaches; etc.

  • Governor recruitment: greater emphasis on recruiting high quality external governors and supporting them.

  • The student voice: how to make student engagement in governance work.

  • Challenging the assumption of an institutional focus on governance: the downside of ambiguity about accountability.


4 reviewing governing body effectiveness the lf cuc effectiveness framework

4 Reviewing governing body effectiveness: the LF/CUC Effectiveness Framework

  • 2011 LF/CUC project produced a framework to identify the factors influencing board effectiveness in HE.

  • 16 volunteer governing bodies of HEIs validated the framework in conducting their own effectiveness reviews.

  • For details see www.lfhe.ac.uk/governance/ reviewinggovernance/project.html.

  • The framework supports effectiveness reviews but doesn’t do the job for HEIs! It is not a checklist and is not to be used mechanistically.

  • Its use requires openness and transparency from governing bodies and an executive.


The effectiveness framework

The Effectiveness Framework


The future generic challenges to governing body effectiveness

The future: generic challenges to governing body effectiveness

  • Greater transparency, and public and political attention: but avoiding the dangers of the politicisation of governance.

  • Enhancing the role of the governing body in academic and student matters: the implications of students as customers.

  • Getting institutional engagement in governance whilst making governance quicker and more responsive.

  • Exercising shared leadership through governance.

  • The need for all boards to have robust means of reviewing their effectiveness, including through the use of externals.


Reviewing the effectiveness of the governing body adolygu effeithiolrwydd y corff llywodraethu

Questions and Discussion


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