Aalto Board approves budget and discusses personnel survey results and related action plan

The Aalto University Board convened on 12 and 13 December 2017.

The Board approved the budget for 2018 and discussed personnel survey results as well as an action plan to be implemented based on the results. The Board also decided on an update to the Limits of Approval Policy, several campus investments, participation in the establishment of a joint unit  Helsinki Graduate School of Economics and the recruitment to leadership positions at Aalto. The Board also reviewed Aalto University digitalisation roadmap and the development of education.

The 2018 budget assumes a slight decline in Ministry of Education and Culture funding and an increase in external funding. In Academy of Finland funding for research profiling, for example, Aalto University has been successful. The share of academic personnel costs in Aalto expenses will rise next year in comparison with 2017, and the cost of services and facilities will remain flat. The fundraising goal for 2018 is to raise at least 10 million euros in donations. The budget assumes an operational deficit of 23 million euros for 2018. 

The board discussed the results of the personnel survey and was happy to see that the good academic results have improved Aalto University’s visibility and reputation, that Aalto has become an increasingly attractive workplace, and that the steps to implement the updated Aalto strategy can be seen in the survey results. While progress has been made in major strategic development initiatives, such as campus, service development and digitalisation, the survey also identified some needs for development. Of these, the board agreed that preventing inappropriate conduct and balancing workloads are justifiable choices for future focus areas.

In the area of campus development, the Board made decisions to invest in Aalto Studios and in the third phase of A Grid as well as a decision of joint projects with the Aalto University Student Union, including selling a plot of land to the student union for building student housing.

In addition, a decision was made to establish, in collaboration with Hanken and the University of Helsinki, a graduate school and research unit called the Helsinki Graduate School of Economics (Helsinki GSE), which will expand the cutting edge of economic expertise in Finland and place Finland in a position to compete with the world’s top institutions for the very best researchers and students in economics.

In addition, the Board authorised the Aalto University President and Provost to initiate the recruiting process of the Vice President (education) for a term beginning on 1 September 2018 and the process of filling the position of the Dean for the School of Engineering for a term beginning on 1 July 2018.

APPENDICES: Budget 2018 and Limits of Approval Policy

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