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Ulrich Schmid has been contributing to the University in many different ways since he first arrived at the HSG in 2007. He began his work as professor of Russian Culture and Society. In February, the former Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences was named to the President’s Board as the Vice-President of External Relations.
"Keeping lines of communication open with political parties and business associations."
“The President’s Board here at the University operates like an elected government in a republic and not like an executive board. It is structured in a way where we look at the needs of the University, in teaching, research, infrastructure, etc., and consult with stakeholders.” Schmid emphasises the consensual culture in the governance of the HSG. “It is very important to talk to involved people at a very early stage of a project. Everybody should have a say when it comes to the implementation of a new initiative.” Ideally, the senate functions like a parliament that legitimises the development of the University.
Schmid notes that many of the initiatives that the President’s Board manages come from stakeholders such as the Schools, individual professors, or the broader public. “In the end, we work with the resources we have to realise the expectations of our stakeholders. At the same time, we create strategic inputs for the future of our University.” Cases in point are the new Joint Medical Master program and the establishment of the School of Computer Science. “The atmosphere in the President’s Board is very agreeable, we lead very open discussions but come always to a decision that everyone shares.”
Since joining the President’s Board, Schmid has focused on keeping lines of communication open with the local political parties and business associations. He also works closely together with the communication team and heads the communication task force of the University, which includes both internal and external media experts as well as a legal advisor. This task force discusses and develops the communication strategy of the HSG, especially in crisis situations.
Other current and upcoming projects include the implementation of the Internationalisation Strategy, which focuses on the existing Hubs in Singapore and Brazil. Moreover, an Asia Board will coordinate activities of HSG professors in China, India and Southeast Asia. Schmid is convinced that international research cooperation must be driven by individual professors. This approach implies that such cooperation follow a life cycle and must be supported with dynamic and flexible tools.