Deciding on a coherent quality system for Karolinska Institutet

The coherent quality system is based on a holistic perspective – there is one KI where all parts of our operations contribute to the overall quality of the university and where our core operations are interdependent on each other.  With this system, we have a consensus on what quality is and how we shall approach quality and we use the consistent methods and tools.

The concept of a coherent quality system was out-lined in KI’s Strategy 2018 and is also mentioned in the latest government research policy: ”…a more coherent system for quality assurance including all activities of the higher education sector, is likely to contribute to a closer link between research and education”. Work commenced in 2015 and I touched upon the work in this blog in June last year.

Associate Professor Anna Kiessling and Britta Steneberg, Coordinator at the Strategic Planning Office have been instrumental in bringing the project to a successful completion. They have had a broad approach bringing in opinions and ideas from many people all over KI.

Next steps

The identified overall quality indicators will be available for the follow-up of KI activities 2017.

We will regularly follow up quality for instance through surveys on the perceived quality with different stakeholders such as students, doctoral students, staff, collaboration partners and other external stakeholders.

A joint survey data base will be established.

Through ”Verksamhetsinformationssystemet”, VIS, i.e. Operations Information System, we will make results from surveys etc readily available for managers and coworkers at all levels of our organisation.

Evaluation and feedback shall be an integral part of KI’s set process for operational planning.

A joint fika to celebrate the finalizing of a coherent quality system for KI. Anna Kiessling and Brita Steneberg to the left.

Continuous development efforts

During the last year’s work, the project team has identified a number of potential development areas that KI will address:

  • Develop the quality work within the joint administrative support, i.e. the University Administration. This includes identifying and describing processes within the joint administration and the interface between central and local (at the departmental level) administrative functions.
  • Develop additional indicators at the overall joint KI level.
  • Develop models for peer review and associated learning.
  • Develop routines and evaluation methods for compliance, including administrative support
  • Develop KI’s incident and deviation handling.
  • Incentive structure supporting quality development.

Maintaining and developing quality in operations are continuous and long-term efforts. KI’s new coherent quality system is to be viewed as the start of a sustainable systematic development of quality in all of KI’s operations.




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