News from the senior management team no. 14/2014

Berit Eika is AU's new pro-rector for education

Professor Berit Eika, vice-dean at the Faculty of Health, has been named pro-rector for education at Aarhus University.

The appointment of the new pro-rector was approved by the University Board at its meeting last week. Berit Eika thus joins the senior management team and becomes chair of the Education Committee from 1 June.

Berit Eika, who holds an MSc in Medicine, has worked with medical education since 1996. She was the driving force behind the establishment of the Centre for Medical Education and co-founded the AU Educational Development Network (UPNet) at Aarhus University. She was appointed professor of medical education in 2005 and has, among other things, received the university's Prize of Honour for Pedagogics.

As pro-rector, Berit Eika is responsible for heading the continued development of Aarhus University's degree programmes and for ensuring broad involvement in the ongoing work and strategic discussions. 

Annual report and accounts approved

At its meeting on 30 April, the University Board approved the university's annual report of activities, accounts and developments in the previous year. As anticipated, the university ended the 2013 financial year with a deficit.

The deficit totalled DKK 141 million out of a total turnover of DKK 6,146 million, and was bigger than expected. The loss has been covered by drawing on equity. In 2014, the budget is for a smaller deficit than in 2013, with a balanced budget expected in 2015.

The annual report describes, among other things, the new strategy for 2013-2020, and describes how, in 2014, the university will continue to target its efforts within the following areas:

  • Attracting external research funding
  • Attracting and retaining talents at all levels
  • Institutional accreditation
  • Development of the digital learning environment
  • Development and establishment of new platforms for business collaboration
  • Consolidation and expansion of its public sector consultancy

Read more

Expert group conducts employee survey           

As part of analysing the internal organisational problems, the expert group is asking all employees to complete a questionnaire on AU's organisation and their work at Aarhus University.

The senior management team hopes that the university's employees will participate in the survey so that the expert group will have as broad and diverse a basis as possible for the analysis.

All responses will be treated confidentially, and the results will never be reported in a way that allows individual respondents to be identified, says chair of the expert group, Torben M. Andersen.

The deadline for completing the questionnaire is 7 May.

If you have not received an email with a link to the questionnaire survey, contact the expert group at

Appointment of BSS heads of department in place

BSS has concluded the process of appointing heads of department for the main academic area. Four of the present department heads will continue in their posts. New heads of department have been appointed at three departments.

The four heads of department who have extended their contracts are:

  • Department of Economics and Business: Allan Würtz
  • Department of Business Administration: Karen Brunsø
  • Department of Business Communication: Christa Thomsen
  • Department of Political Science and Government: Thomas Pallesen

And new heads of department have been appointed at three departments:

AU Herning: Jacob Kjær Eskildsen

  • Here, Michael Goodsite is stepping down as head of department; read more (in Danish)

Department of Law: Tine Sommer

  • Here, the department is saying goodbye to Michael Stenicke as head of department; read more

Department of Psychology and Behavioural Sciences: Carsten René Jørgensen

  • Here, Henrik Høgh-Olesen is resigning as head of department; read more

Dean of the School of Business and Social Sciences Svend Hylleberg presents the seven heads of department and briefly outlines the challenges they need to solve together with the rest of faculty management team. Read here

Internal mentor scheme to resume

15 May is the deadline for registering for Aarhus University's mentor scheme for academic staff members.

The mentor scheme gives researchers at assistant professorship level the opportunity to exchange ideas with a more experienced colleague about their career paths and working lives. The deadline for registration on 15 May applies to both mentors (researchers at associate professorship level or above) and mentees (at assistant professorship level). 

The mentor scheme, which has been the called the Empower Talent! initiative, started in 2013, and the first class of mentors/mentees are now half way through the programme. 

Cited 27% more than world average

The newly published CWTS Leiden Ranking 2014 shows that research from Aarhus University is cited 27 per cent more than the world average.

The Leiden Ranking is a purely bibliometric ranking which only measures impact. The size of the universities is not directly included in the ranking, but it is possible to filter a range of institutions according to size. Here, this year's ranking shows that, among the 138 biggest universities worldwide, Aarhus University is placed no. 68 on the basis of its impact. This represents a significant improvement from no. 77 in 2013.

Among all the universities in the ranking, AU is now ranked no. 131 (no. 159 in 2013).

The research at Aarhus University is very highly cited within three particular "fields" (research areas):

  • Natural sciences (no. 48 in the world),
  • Cognitive sciences (no. 50 in the world)
  • Social science (no. 73 in the world)

According to this year's Leiden Ranking, research at the University of Copenhagen is also cited 27% more than the world average. DTU enjoys a very impressive position in the ranking with an impact score that shows that the specialist technical university is cited 41% more than the world average.

Rockefeller University is no. 1 ahead of MIT. Of the 25 top-placed universities, 20 are American. Among the best-placed European universities, the top four are the University of Cambridge, the University of Oxford, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne.

On the Leiden Ranking's website, it is possible to conduct your own searches to see how the universities are placed in relation to one another based on a range of parameters.

Ministry publishes quota 2 figures

The number of quota 2 applicants for Danish Bachelor's degree programmes has fallen a single percentage point compared to 2013.

This was evident from the combined figures for higher education which the Ministry of Higher Education and Science published last week. 

In total, 20,379 applicants this year had a Bachelor’s degree programme as the highest priority on their quota 2 application. With 4,418 first-priority applications, Aarhus University received 2% fewer applications than last year.

Registration now open for summer parties

Summer parties are being held on Friday 20 June at all four main academic areas. Administrative members of staff are, of course, also invited, and back-office staff are free to choose which party they want to attend.


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