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A Decision Support System for Institutional Research Management in Higher Education: Data Mining to Determine Research Focus, Intensity and Synergy

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4 Author(s)
Ehlers, K. ; Centre for Knowledge Dynamics & Decision Making, Stellenbosch Univ., South Africa ; Joubert, M. ; Kinghorn, J. ; van Zyl, A.

Research orientated universities face a conundrum. On the one hand research areas are increasing and expanding; on the other research resources are - in relative terms - diminishing. As a consequence a more active approach to shaping the institutional research profile is called for. This presupposes a clear view of research activities at the institution, but this is notoriously lacking, universities being what they are. This paper reports on a DSS which was developed for research management at Stellenbosch University, South Africa. Within the context of a rather unique national management system for higher education, a data mining approach was developed and tested. A modified ontology model was built to bridge the inherent ambiguity when clustering outputs across different academic disciplines. The results enabled research managers to correlate (in a meaningful way) strategic goals with actual output. The outcome points to a number of further possibilities for the application of this system.

Published in:

Computational Science and Engineering, 2009. CSE '09. International Conference on  (Volume:4 )

Date of Conference:

29-31 Aug. 2009

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