Strategies for dealing with falling student numbers

At the beginning of November, CHE Consult successfully organised two conferences at Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg and Hamm-Lippstadt University of Applied Sciences on the topic of “Falling student numbers – just a question of marketing?”.

The reason for organising these conferences was the development in student numbers over the last ten years. After universities had long benefited from rising numbers, demographic change and the predicted population decline now indicate a movement in the opposite direction: More universities and degree programmes are competing for fewer prospective students.

In moderated workshops at the conferences, the participants developed various strategies to help universities meet this challenge. Use cases were used to explore the possibilities of university marketing, the further development of degree programmes and the topic of internationalisation.

In addition, experienced experts provided insights into their projects and solutions. In Magdeburg, Dr Andreas Hoeschen, Head of Internationalisation Programmes for German Universities at the DAAD, presented initiatives for attracting international specialists. In Hamm, Christiane Holz, Manager of Study Programme Informatics at the Fonty Hogeschool Techniek en Logistiek, reported on the special features and success factors of the Dutch higher education system. The aim of the conference team was to convey methodological approaches and promote a helpful exchange of experience and knowledge.