Two weeks have passed since I took office as vice-chancellor of KI. Getting to know my new organization has been my top priority thus far, as it will continue to be in the weeks to come. I will keep my eyes open, I will listen, and I will ask questions. This is what a transition to a new organization is all about.
During my career as a medical researcher I have learnt to appreciate KI from the outside. Now I will get to know KI from the inside. I will visit each KI department, and I have notified the department heads about this. We have also decided to arrange a general meeting, open for all KI group leaders – the very driving force of KI’s research. Already next week I will meet representatives of the Medical Students Union’s house foundation (Kårhusstiftelsen) and soon thereafter I will have my first meeting with the Chairs of the Medical Students Union and the Student union of Odontology. I am deeply committed to student issues and look forward to collaborate with the student unions. In a couple of weeks I will meet all new students at the Welcome Day. This will be one of the highlights of the current semester.
KI will come out strengthened
While KI has been exposed to extensive negative media coverage and public debate throughout the last one and a half year, it is now time for a fresh start. The crisis has taken its toll, but I am convinced that our university will come out strengthened. We should all take responsibility for this to happen. The interim management has initiated a number of important measures and I will now build on this work, tasked by the KI board. In addition I suggest creating a collegial advisory board (kollegialt råd) that can support the university management so as to ensure that the interests of research and teaching are duly taken into account in all decisions of the management and the consistory. The aim must be to raise our university to the uppermost international level where it rightly belongs.
Getting out of the crisis with added strength is not about introducing new rules and regulations. It is about developing strategies and visions for the future KI, it is about ethical preparedness, it is about taking responsibility and complying with those rules and regulations that are already in place. Obviously this is fully possible without undermining the very foundation of any university: academic freedom. Excellent research must go hand in hand with an excellent work culture.
KI highly ranked in Nature Index Innovation
KI is doing well and has continued to do well throughout the turbulent period that is now behind us. One example was provided last week by Nature Index 2017 Innovation supplement, where KI ranks as number 1 in Sweden and 38 globally. This Normalised Lens Influence Metric measures citations of research articles in patents owned by third parties.
I am very keen to have an open dialogue and my blog will hopefully prove helpful in this context. If you are a KI staff member you may let me and the KI management know what you think about your workplace, the working atmosphere and leadership by participating in the employee survey. The survey will be open late September. You can read more about this at the staff portal.
More on my vision for KI can be found in my programme declaration put forward to the Consultative College in the recruitment process.