Mellem seminarier og professionshøjskoler: Konditionering af ledelsesrummet i CVU Storkøbenhavn

Alice Jeppesen & Peter Schiødt

Student thesis: Master executive thesis


This dissertation addresses conditions of leadership in CVU Storkøbenhavn, established and accredited during 2005-2006 as a University College for education of teachers and kindergarten teachers. CVU Storkøbenhavn is organized in nine divisions, including departments for in-service education and for research and development within pedagogical education. Currently 7.000 students are enrolled. As a consequence of political initiatives and new legislation in Denmark in the period from 1998 to 2006, the conditions of leadership have changed in the University College sector. A period of mergers and accreditation of these organisations from 2004 to 2006 is, as a consequence of political agreements made in November 2006, to be followed by new mergers into larger units beginning in 2007. These changes will probably mean the end of CVU Storkøbenhavn as an organization, and a fusion of its divisions into what is to be called a Professionshøjskole of 11.000 students in Copenhagen is a likely result. The dissertation links the reforms within this sector to the Bologna process in the European Union initiated in 1999, from which visions of harmonisation through quality assurance are being carried through into Danish education policy. The demands for quality assurance have been reinforced in Denmark in the period, and from November 2006 there has been a radical change in the political methods for ensuring quality by connecting lack of performance to the possibility of losing the public subsidy. In April 2006 the management of CVU Storkøbenhavn made the decision of implementing a system of quality assurance, and this dissertation asks the question: How does a field of leadership emerge in CVU Storkøbenhavn from the decision of the organisations quality system, and how might this field be conditioned by aspects of institutional history of constitution, meaning and power? Through scientific methods from systemic and discourse theory, witch have been further developed in the last 10 years at the Copenhagen Business School, a set of analyses are carried out concerning the political and local discoursivations, decisions and institutionalisation of these decisions. After developing a strategy of analyses, the analyses begin by viewing the history of constitution of the CVU-sector in Denmark, and thereby also CVU Storkøbenhavn, through political and local speech acts or discoursivations [1], witch "tells the tales” of the future of the sector, and through political and local decisions, which institutionalises these. The second part of the analyses concerns the decision to implement the system of quality assurance in CVU Storkøbenhavn as constituting a local field of leadership. Through methods of systemic theory the decision is considered as constituting a field of meaning with dimensions of time (distinguishing between future possibilities and past experiences), sociality (with the distinction between us and them) and case (with the distinction between this and something else). Herby rationales of leadership emerge in terms of control, legitimacy and prevention. The final part of the analyses concerns the relations of power between the management and the academic staff, respectively CVU Storkøbenhavn and the supervising ministry of education and/or the government. By conditioning three aspects of relations of power, a local field of leadership emerges within the national administration of the sector. Locally, a discourse analyses of documents from 2004 shows a balance between the interests of the management and the academic staff. But it is an assumption of the dissertation, that this balance will be challenged by quality systems demands of taken in control of the central contribution of the organisation: educational services. Nationally, a discourse analyses of documents by CVU-rectors and boards and by the government and the Ministry of Education, respectively in the years 2005-2006 shows, that the means of the government in control is changing into a form, witch can be characterised– in the terms of Michel Foucault – as governmentality. That is, the government’s way of setting control is through changing the mentality of divisions and employees. In conclusion the field of leadership in CVU Storkøbenhavn is viewed upon as emerging as: A local field of meaning, made possible by the constitutional history, but given direction by the managements’ discoursivation in 2004 of a common vision for the future of the organisation. A threat to the local balance of power through the demands of the quality system and by the governmentality, both introduced in 2006. A national and European horizon of new forms of organisations and of quality control. In the end, the results of the dissertation raise the question: Will the new methods of control be spread into the Danish public sector as a whole, and by doing so changing the administrative conditions into something similar to those known from the private enterprises? [1] While the term "speech acts” springs from Anglo-Saxon tradition starting with the oxford philosopher J. L. Austin, this dissertation takes its starting point in the French discourse theory developed from the work of Michel Foucault.

EducationsMaster of Public Administration, (Executive Master Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2007
Number of pages119