News from the Senior Management Team no. 36/2011

New departmental structure at Arts

The faculty management team at Arts has adopted a new departmental structure which will be established in early 2012. The new structure has been decided on after a comprehensive consultation process involving Arts staff. It will contribute to strengthening both core Arts disciplines and the interdisciplinary dimension of the faculty's degree programmes and research activities.

Read more about the new department structure on the Arts homepage, which also has a link to the report from the faculty management team (in Danish only)

Amendment to law to enable merger with Aarhus School of Engineering

The University and Property Agency has proposed an amendment to current legislation on degree programmes offered by business academies and professional Bachelor’s degrees which will enable AU to offer the degree programmes which are the responsibility of the Engineering College of Aarhus at present.

The amendment, which may come into force as early as 1 January 2012, will affect three sections of the act and will mean that the university will be able to offer professional Bachelor's degree programmes such as the BSc in engineering, as well as civil engineering programmes and doctoral programmes in engineering.

The amendment will enable AU to continue to offer the study programmes currently offered by  the Aarhus School of Engineering without having to apply for  accreditation of these programmes after the merger.

It is expected that the Danish parliament will consider the proposed amendment in November 2011.

New homepage for the four university-wide core activities and the senior management team

As a consequence of the redesign of AU's homepage, the senior management team and the four university-wide core activities now have new web pages under the heading "strategy and management" on

The four core activities - research, talent development, knowledge exchange and education - are each supported by a university-wide forum and committee. The committees are comprised of the dean and vice-deans with university-wide responsibility for the  core activity in question, and the four forums assemble representatives from staff, the student body, and other groups. Meeting agendas, schedules and minutes will be available on the new university-wide core activities site, along with other material.

The "strategy and management" pages will also include information on the Board and the senior management team, including all editions of this newsletter and links to a range of the university's strategy documents.

Successful summer university

This year, AU held a joint summer school for all main academic areas for the first time, AU Summer University.

Eight hundred Danish students and three hundred international students took classes in sixty different subjects which were taught by forty guest lecturers. Ninety-four per cent of participating students would recommend AU Summer University to their friends, according to the evaluation.

International Center coordinated the Summer University in cooperation with a steering committee headed by Bodil Due, former dean of the Faculty of Humanities. The committee was comprised of representatives from each main academic area.

According to the evaluation, the majority of the Danish participants decided to attend the summer university either because they wanted to get a head start on their degree programme, or because they wanted to take a course in a specific subject.

Next year's summer university is already being planned. Bodil Due and Dorte Føns Sørensen from International Center are available for a personal consultation at each main academic area to explain about the summer school's activities in order to ensure that there will be an even broader array of courses on offer next year. They have already visited Arts and Health to inform interested staff members about the possibilities and conditions for getting involved.

Progress in international rankings

Aarhus University moved up nine spots on the recently published 2011 HEEACT ranking. AU is now placed at number 96 worldwide - and number 6 in Scandinavia and number 29 in Europe. AU was ranked number 132 on the first HEAACT list, which was issued in 2007.

The HEEACT ranking, also known as the Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities, is exclusively based on research indicators in the categories productivity, impact and excellence. Research quality is assessed using the so called h-index and the number of highly cited papers.

Different rankings employ different parameters in evaluating the world's 17,000 universities. Unlike the HEEACT list, the QS and THE rankings include subjective criteria in their assessments.


AU's 2011 placement on the four most respected rankings:

  • THE World University Rankings: No. 125 (up 42 spots from no. 167)
  • ARWU (the Shanghai ranking): No. 86 (up 12 spots from no. 98)
  • QS World University Rankings: No. 79 (up 5 spots from no. 84)
  • HEEACT: No. 96 (up 9 spots from no. 105)

Read more about the international rankings and AU's position

The Master's degree programme in finance and international business which is offered by the School of Business and Social Sciences has also been selected as one of the world's leading Master's degree programmes once again. The Financial Times ranks the MSc programme as number 44 on its Master in Management Ranking - up seven spots since last year.


  • 14 November: Meeting of University Board
  • 15 October: Meeting with Universitets-Samvirket
  • 30 November - 1 December: University management seminar at Sandbjerg Manor
  • 6 December: Main Liaison Committee meeting
  • 15 December: Meeting of University Board

The Senior Management Team publishes a newsletter every week. This newsletter includes a brief description of current activities and discussions. You can sign up for the Danish version of the newsletter at, after which you will receive an e-mail whenever the newsletter is issued.

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