Kauppatieteellinen tiedekunta, 2014
Niina Koivunen, Associate Professor, PhD
Master's Degree Programme in International Business
The present research studies inter-organisational cooperation in the educational sector from the managerial perspective. Generally cooperation between organisations is receiving much attention nowadays offering an opportunity of sharing experiences, breaking the vertical structures of organisations and engaging into horizontal endeavours and trying on new roles for improving work practices, acquiring new knowledge and increasing professionalism.
This research concentrates on the educational sector as one of the most active sectors that emphasises the importance of cooperative activities. Often in the academic literature cooperation between organisations is described as having just positive influences. This research is to discover both capacities and challenges that organisations face in the process of cooperation, revealing features of interschool cooperation, tools of managing interschool cooperation and accompanying challenges constitute the problematic content of the research question.
Theoretical background is formed out of the material on educational leadership, researches in the sphere of inter-organisational cooperation, the concept of poles of cooperation, interschool cooperation and forms of interschool cooperation.
This research is a case study of the project on cooperation “Allegretto” that has been implemented between schools of Kouvola and St. Petersburg since 2011. Primary data were gathered from personal interviews with teachers and principals and representatives of municipal administration in Finland, email interviews with teachers from Russia and documentation on the project.
Concept of poles of cooperation helps to create a framework for managing interschool cooperation that includes elements describing the capacity of interschool cooperation and challenges of interschool cooperation. The strategic dimensions describe the strategic capacities of schools, engaged in cooperation, while the issues presented as poles are not totally conflicting, but they contain contrasting essences that demand special attention from the management of cooperation.
Interschool Cooperation, Capacity of Interschool Cooperation, Challenges of Interschool Cooperation, Poles of Cooperation, Forms of Interschool Cooperation, Educational Leadership