Posted in Policy

Staff Formation Plan finally published!

After a wait of more than a year the formation plan finally arrived via a letter signed by the dean and sent on February 1st, 2010 to the council’s president. The plan consists of only 8 pages (including the contents page) and was accompanied by an excel file holding the numbers the staff body was anxious waiting for. The documents were briefly discussed during the 80th Council meeting, held on Wednesday, February 9, 2010.
Thursday, February 10, 2010

(Rotterdam) – Although the document is only 8 pages long, it took the dean more than a year to write it, more than the average student needs to write a Master’s thesis. “One department refused to fully cooperate ” the dean explained a while ago while he himself explicitly refusing to say which department he was talking about. Why would a department refuse to cooperate one could ask? There is actually just one suitable answer: the dean trying to bring change which is not welcome for some people. We cannot claim it’s negative or positive, but either way it’s drastic.

On the 80th Council meeting the staff acknowledged to be very happy the document has finally been finished. “Now we have a clear insight in what the School holds.” On the negative side, it’s quite difficult to calculate the total load needed for educational purposes as the student assistants and aio’s are excluded from the calculations in the document. If we do consider these parties that have been let out we can determine there’s overcapacity.

“Apparently we need this many people to provide proper education.” Is the model presented by the document close to our reality? The ESE program director (I. Arnold) replied that the model only shows the amount of education we have to provide, while the implementation of that amount is done by the departments itself. But fact is, there’s actually a gap present between how many hours are needed and the hours that are actually present due to the exclusion of the student assistants and aio’s. Arnold still sticks to his vision the model isn’t ‘necessarily’ incorrect, implying his view of the staff formation is just the deliverable and not what the capacity is. This is a bit odd, as normal organizations calculate both the available capacity and the needed capacity to come to strategic conclusions. Apparently the ESE doesn’t work this way, but rather uses some illogical model.

The model just doesn’t seem to be right. Furthermore, according to the staff president H. Trienekens there’s a serious problem present within the model: by adjusting some parameters it is possible to create every possible (and desired) outcome without actually adjusting anything in reality. added the model has every aspect present of a black box. It’s similar to a model a quant creates for managers of banks with the purpose building portfolio’s. Such models are that complicated that the manager doesn’t understand it, but only sees the risk factor and if that number is too large he will send the quant back to lower the risk. The only thing the quant does is adjusting some numbers within the model without actually changing the composition of the model but still acquiring a lower risk. The same thing is done here by the School’s Board and that’s why identified the model as being a black box. Of course the board immediately denied this, saying the same model was also used in 2004: forgetting that the same problem was present back then as well…

To round matters up there weren’t really interesting things apart from the same mistake that was made in 2004 which causes the model to only show the required educational burden. It’s remarkable the document doesn’t show the available capacity and how it is used as every other normal organization would do everything to dig up those numbers.

One more thing: let it be noted the dean acknowledged the addition of informatics (one excel course) to the first year of the bachelor Economics (exactly) compensates the loss of resources needed due to the termination of the bachelor program Economics & Informatics. And to only imagine that this year has been the first year without new any bachelor 1 students, meaning there are still students in their 2nd and 3rd year. No extra informatics capacity is expected to be required in the future. According to the deans’ rule of exact compensation already being present, this would mean that in 2 years the required capacity for the 2nd and 3rd year of the Bachelor Economics & Informatics will disappear which will create huge overcapacity! This would really be a weird situation, wouldn’t it…?

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