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Evusah, MM.  2013.  Strategic responses by the University of Nairobi to changes in the external environment. , Nairobi: University of Nairobi Abstract

Organizations are environment serving and environment dependent. The environment in which organizations operate is constantly changing with different factors influencing the organizations. Coping with the increasingly competitive environment has called on firms to rethink their strategies. Strategic responses ensure the survival of organizations at large and at the same time enhance relevance in the environment in which they serve. Theobjective of this study was to determine the strategies adopted by the University of Nairobi to changes in the external environment. An interview guide was used to collect primary data while secondary data were gathered from various publications of the University of Nairobi. The data collected was analysed using content analysis. The study findings indicate that the University of Nairobi faces various challenges from the external environment including increased competition from local and international universities, reduced capitation from the exchequer, low information technology integration, poaching of staff by other universities, high rate of poverty in the country, increased pressure to admit more students and inadequate budgetary allocation. The University of Nairobi has adopted various strategic responses to address these challenges which included expansion into new markets, product development, forming strategic alliances and collaborations with other universities, improving resource management and governance, increasing and diversifying the revenue base, upgrading and fully exploiting university assets and preparing a university strategic plan for the development and use of physical facilities. Other response strategies included promoting research, and consultancy activities, innovation and technology transfer. Following the findings from this study, the following recommendations are made. The management of the university of Nairobi should lead in providing leadership and direction required in formulating strategic responses, fine tuning strategic plan by the university to fit to environmental changes, ensuring a strategic fit between the strategies and the environment, promoting research, consultancy, innovation and technology transfer through developing and implementing appropriate research programmes and promoting relevant consultancy services, collaborating/partnering and forging strategic alliances with other universities both locally and internationally, market expansion and diversification.

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