Institutional reputation affects the ability of universities to attract and retain new students, the best faculty and staff members. It fosters the best domestic and international collaborators and industry partners as well as new research funds and donors. In short it underlies all aspects of a university’s mission.  Indeed, our work is guided by the University’s Strategic Integrated Plan 2013-2018, which sets out goals for Carleton to be known nationally and internationally for its research, teaching and organizational excellence, and student empowerment and engagement. All strategic themes identified in the Strategic Integrated Plan directly tie in with reputation.

In order to explore various factors that affect Carleton’s reputation, our strategic impact group consulted stakeholders from across campus. We held conversations with representatives of the Carleton University Alumni Association, the Office of Institutional Research and Planning, Undergraduate Recruitment, the Department of University Communications, Deans of Carleton’s faculties, and members of previous strategic impact groups that tackled related questions. These conversations allowed us to identify many relevant issues and helped to narrow down the scope of our wicked problem.

In particular, based on these consultations, we refined our focus to ways in which Carleton’s research and researchers can be celebrated and promoted. This, in turn, lead us to the substantial prior efforts made by a previous SIG through their “DiscoverResearch” website. While this was developed in the context of “engaging  mid-career faculty in research” it was observed that the resulting prototype was  potentially  “impactful to an even broader group of researchers”. The key idea was to provide a website which highlighted researchers on campus and fostered connections and collaborations both internally and externally. While it generated a great deal of interest and positive feedback, it could not be fully realized due to lack of time and resources.

Building on this prior work, our SIG has developed a plan to get this project off the ground– including budgetary aspects, personnel, key stakeholders, and a phased implementation to promote buy-in from researchers. Our plan also includes key additional features to enhance the user experience, including most significantly the “Raven Talk”. Modeled on the well known “TED talk”, these short video presentations will offer researchers a versatile and contemporary means to bring their research and interests to other researchers, potential students and the public at large.

  • David Amundsen (Associate Professor and Acting Director, School of Mathematics and Statistics)
  • Jack Coghill (Multimedia Technician, School of Studies in Art and Culture)
  • Laurie Jaeger (School Administrator, School of Studies in Art and Culture)
  • Kathleen Kelly (Manager, Operations and Planning, University Services)
  • Dragana Polovina-Vukovic (Instructional Design and Research Facilitator, Educational Development Centre)
  • Eddie Villarta (Manager, Network Services, Computing and Communication Services)