Skip to content
robert-bye-CyvK_Z2pYXg-unsplash

Organizational Adaptivity in the German Higher Education Context (OrA)

 

Organizational Adaptivity in the Higher Education Context (OrA) is a cooperation project with the FernUniversität in Hagen (CATALPA – Center of Advanced Technology for Assisted Learning and Predictive Analytics). The project investigates how institutions and their stakeholders (e.g. leadership, teaching, and administrative staff) implement digital teaching practices and ensure their adaptivity and longevity. The research project is designed to further our understanding of the digitalization of higher education as well as translate research findings into concrete recommendations for higher education practitioners through an Interactive Research Model and Knowledge Transfer Workshops. To this end, the project encompasses three empirical studies with two main topics.

Educational technology

Currently, we are conducting in-depth comparative case studies of higher education institutions which use educational technology to different degrees. Through a mixed-method design, we explore the organizational conditions – e.g. institutional leadership, communication, culture –  that hinder and foster the implementation and sustainability of educational technology in different institutional and international settings.

The rapid turn in higher education

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, we conducted two empirical studies which examined national and international responses to the rapid digital turn in higher education. In the first study, we analyzed the experiences of instructors, working in various disciplines and German higher education institutions. Through their experiences, we identified commonly occurring as well as specific subject challenges related to online teaching in addition to institutional crisis management responses.

In the second study, we investigated, through the experiences of  higher education leaders at universities and intermediaries, how the pandemic created new challenges, sparked innovation and collaborations, as well as exposed new and existing inequalities across diverse higher education institutions and organizations.

Associated Researchers:

 

Duration04/2020 – 03/2023

Contact

Melissa Laufer, Dr.

Senior Researcher and Project Lead: Knowledge & Society

Benedikt Fecher, Dr.

Head of Research Programme: Knowledge & Society

Part of the research programme

Digital & Indiscipline: HIIG Explainer videos with English subtitles

Former employees

Journal articles and conference proceedings

Deacon, B., Laufer, M. & Schäfer, L. O. (2022). Infusing Educational Technologies in the Heart of the University – A Systematic Literature Review from an Organisational Perspective. British Journal of Educational Technology. DOI: 10.1111/bjet.13277 Publication details

Laufer, M., Leiser, A., Deacon, B., Perrin de Brichambaut, P., Fecher, B., Kobsoda, C., & Hesse, F. (2021). Digital higher education: A divider or bridge builder? Leadership perspectives on EdTech in a COVID-19 reality. International Journal of Educational Technology in Higher Education, 18(51). DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s41239‐021‐00287‐6 Publication details

Elsholz, U., Fecher, B., Deacon, B., Schäfer, L.O., & Laufer, M. (2021). Implikationen der Covid-19-Pandemie für digitale Lehre: Organisierte Freiheit als Veränderungsparadigma. MedienPädagogik: Zeitschrift für Theorie Und Praxis Der Medienbildung, 40(CoViD-19), 472-86. DOI: 10.21240/mpaed/40/2021.11.29.X Publication details

Book contributions and chapters

Schütz, J., Rosenkranz, L., Deacon, B. & Elsholz, U. (2022). Never walk alone. Über das Verhältnis pädagogischer Professionalität und organisationaler Bedingungen an Hochschulen in Zeiten der Pandemie. In H. Angenent, J. Petri, & T. Zimenkova (Eds.), Hochschulen in der Pandemie: Impulse für eine nachhaltige Entwicklung von Studium und Lehre, In press. Bielefeld: transcript. Publication details

Laufer, M. Deacon, B. & Schäfer, L. O. (2022). The Power of Informal Networks: How Middle Management, Central Leadership and Trust can Impact Innovation at the University. In F. W. Hesse, C. Kobsda & C. Schemmann, Digital Transformation of Higher Education—Global Learning Report 2022. (pp. 21-23). Berlin: Global Learning Council (GLC), Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst e.V. (DAAD), Times Higher Education (THE). DOI: 10.21241/ssoar.79627 Publication details

Custer, S., Deacon, B., Herckis, L., Hesse, F. W., Hörig, M., Kercher, J., Knoth, A., Knüttgen, N., Kobsda, C., Leiser, A., Meyer-Guckel, V., Ndemo, B., Saxberg, B., Vignare, K. , & Willems, D. (2021). Global Learning Council (2021). Digital Transformation of Higher Education—Global Learning Report. In Friedrich W. Hesse, Christian Kobsda & Anne Leiser, Berlin:. DOI: 10.21241/ssoar.73580 Publication details

Other publications

Deacon, B. & Leiser, A. (2022). Inequalities in higher education: A global perspective. Hochschulforum Digitalisierung (HFD) BLOG. Publication details

Deacon, B., Laufer, M. & Sokolovska, N. (2022). Sharing knowledge: Impact of Covid-19 on digital teaching. Digital society blog. Publication details

Deacon, B. & Timm, M. (2022). Possibilities for Change: Higher Education and Digitalisation. encore. The Annual Magazine on Internet and Society Research, 2021/2022, 120-127. Publication details

Deacon, B., & Timm, M. (2021). Possibilities for Change – Higher Education and Digitalisation. Digital society blog. Publication details

Laufer, M. & Deacon, B. (2020). The rapid digital turn: How are universities faring? Digital Society Blog. Publication details

Lectures and presentations

Symposium. Digitale Kulturen der Lehre entwickeln.. University of Bamberg. Markusstr. 8a, 96047 Bamberg, Bamberg, Germany: 07.10.2022 Further information

Len Ole Schäfer, Bronwen Deacon, Melissa Laufer

Leadership in Digital Change: An exploration of organizational trust and innovation in universities
44th Annual EAIR Forum 2022. Malta College of Arts, Science & Technology (MCAST), Malta. Online, Online, Malta: 06.09.2022 Further information

Melissa Laufer, Bronwen Deacon, & Len Ole Schäfer

Organizational conditions and dynamics of digital teaching [Case study].
Academic Practice and Technology (APT): Shaping academic practice through diversity and flexibility. UCL, LSE, Imperial College London, Kingston University & Queen Mary University London. Online, Online, UK: 01.07.2022 Further information

Len Ole Schäfer, Bronwen Deacon, & Melissa Laufer

Qualität in der digitalen Lehre – Eine Untersuchung von Einflussfaktoren
Tagung der Gesellschaft für Hochschulforschung 2021. Gesellschaft für Hochschulforschung. Online, Siegen, Germany: 16.09.2021 Further information

Moritz Timm, Bronwen Deacon, Melissa Laufer, Len Ole Schäfer

Enge und lose Kopplungen in der Hochschule – Die COVID-19 Pandemie und digitale Lehre
Soziologische Betrachtungen zur Digitalisierung der Lehre (in der COVID-19-Pandemie). DIPF | Leibniz-Institut für Bildungsforschung und Bildungsinformation. Online, Frankfurt am Main, Germany: 10.09.2021 Further information

Bronwen Deacon, Len Ole Schäfer, Moritz Timm, Melissa Laufer

The Rapid Digital Turn: An Exploration into the Tight and Loose Coupling of University Structures [paper presentation]
43rd Annual EAIR Forum 2021: Transformation Fast and Slow: Quality, Trust and Digitalisation in Higher Education.. Humboldt University of Berlin. Online, Berlin, Germany: 10.09.2021 Further information

Bronwen Deacon, Len Ole Schäfer & Melissa Laufer

Re-imagining higher education: Shifting gears and shifting visions
UNIVERSITY:FUTURE FESTIVAL - LEARNING, SYSTEMS AND THE NEW NORMAL. Hochschulforum Digitalisierung. Online, Berlin, Germany: 08.10.2020 Further information

Anne Leiser, Melissa Laufer, Bronwen Deacon, Christian Kobsda

Lehren in der Krise, Lernen aus der Krise? Erfolg & Verstetigung digitaler Lehr- und Lerninnovationen
UNIVERSITY:FUTURE FESTIVAL - LEARNING, SYSTEMS AND THE NEW NORMAL. Hochschulforum Digitalisierung. Online, Berlin, Germany: 07.10.2020 Further information

Melissa Laufer, Bronwen Deacon, Len Ole Schäfer

Panels

Inequalities in higher education: A global perspective
University:Future Festival 2021 - Open for Discussion. Hochschulforum Digitalisierung & Stiftung Innovation in der Hochschullehre. Online, Berlin, Germany: 11.11.2021 Further information

Anne Leiser, Bronwen Deacon, P. Fredman, P. Ogan, B. Moder-Mercer & Grabill

Inequalities in higher education – A global perspective
University:Future Festival 2021 - Open for Discussion. Hochschulforum Digitalisierung. Online, Berlin, Germany: 03.11.2021 Further information

Anne Leiser, Bronwen Deacon, Pam Fredman, Amy Ogan, Barbara Moser-Mercer, Jeff Grabill

Digital higher education – A divider or bridge builder? Leadership perspectives on digital learning for collaboration
CHER 33rd Annual Conference Promoting Closer Relations and Scholarly Dialogues Between European and Asian Higher Education Researchers. University of Hong Kong; CHER Board of Governors. Online, Hong Kong, HKSAR: 01.09.2021 Further information

Bronwen Deacon, Anne Leiser, Erle Lim Chuen Hian & Ilka Parchmann

Organisation of events

The Rapid Digital Turn: An Exploration into the Tight and Loose Coupling of University Structures
Understanding Digital Transformations of Higher Education Teaching and Learning in the Nordics and Beyond. From 30.03.2021 to 31.07.2021. Online, Online, Online. Co-Organised by: Universities of Agder (Norway) Aarhus (Denmark) and KTH Royal Institute of Technology (Sweden) (International) Further information

Melissa Laufer, Bronwen Deacon