Omdømmebygging i institusjoner for høyere utdanning: En kvalitativ studie av omdømmebygging i fristilte institusjoner for høyere utdanning
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New Public Management was introduced to the Norwegian education sector in the 1980 and 1990s. This implied that universities and colleges got more freedom on how to plan and implement strategies to reach the goals and report results to the Norwegian Ministry for Education. Based on the achieved results the Ministry of Education decides the future financing of universities and colleges. This creates a "market" in the sector of education and a competition between institutions for higher education. This paper is based on studying two cases, one state university and one regional university college, to explore their marketing strategies and their use of advertisement. NTNU is the main case, while HiST, based in the same city, is the contrast case. The assumption is that the pledge by the Norwegian Ministry of Education was interpreted in such a way that marketing and advertising was the option to attract qualified students, survive the competition with other institutions for higher education and satisfy the criteria set by the Norwegian Ministry of Education. The assumption is that introduction of New Public Management stimulated the emergence of such marketing strategies. The interviews with NTNU University and HiST College leadership were carried out in order to find out why institutions made such strategies. In the analysis I seek to explain the emergence of such marketing strategies in the light of New Public Management theories, hands – off management and translation theory. The main findings are that New Public Management influences the emergence of marketing strategies at NTNU and HiST, but in the case of NTNU it also goes via EU since NTNU has international ambitions and considers itself to be in competition with European universities. This is strongly connected to the history of NTNU and the way that NTNU perceives itself. The same goes for HiST whose identity made it develop marketing in a different way. NTNU is using more resources to profile itself for broader audience, while HiST has adjusted marketing strategy to the local context. NTNU is more concerned with reputation building, while HiST focuses more on identity building. However, in the end we see that both institutions had their marketing strategies based on their competence and practice. In case of NTNU we see that its identity as leading technical university led it to continue on its road to success in a more global context. Thus, its marketing activities are expensive and reach broad audience. HiST is a regional college that has a smaller arena and is much more modes in its marketing activities. Both NTNU and HiST were concerned to build good reputation because it is a new trend on how to achieve what public institutions always need to have, namely, legitimacy and trust.