Fostering stakeholder alignment and buy-in at Portland State University


How might stakeholders align on core principles and establish buy-in for transformation?


Eight-pronged effort: 

  • Shared core principles and established buy-in through feedback sessions, surveys, and town halls
  • Offered candid reflections through provost’s blog
  • Made progress transparent through student success initiatives posted online
  • Implemented performance-based budgeting process to increase transparency around resource allocation
  • Empowered leaders “to get stuff done” in service of academic innovation and student success
  • Used data to identify gaps to inform prioritization of student success projects
  • Looked to ideas from the “outside,” both from other campuses and other sectors
  • Used design thinking as a way to incorporate student experiences


A transformation journey enabled by a commitment to inclusivity and transparency, visionary leadership, new insights from data, and implementation capacity.

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Brainstorming prompts for you and your team to consider

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