Students' crises management at the University of Dar es Salaam.

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University of Dar es Salaam
The study was conducted to examine the causes of recurrent student crises at the University of Dar es Salaam. It specifically focused on the development and strategies/methods of handling the crises. Literature on management of conflict revealed that, to a large extent, the University as an organisation has not deployed satisfactorily the knowledge and skills of conflict management in handling student crises. Using interviews, documentary sources and questionnaires a case study was carried out at the University of Dar es Salaam. The study was guided by an eclectic model of conflict management. The survey data revealed that the most dominant crisis management strategies used at the University of Dar es Salaam include the use of force, involvement of state organs and witch-hunting of students' government leaders. Others included closure of the University. Occasionally however, the University Management has tried to heed to the demands of the students. It is argued that in order to reduce bureaucracy, which could foster internal conflict and student crises there should be proper Organisational Development (O.D.). It is further emphasised that most student crises arise from antagonism in the areas of power and influence, authority, values and attitudes, expectations, exchange relationships and conflict resolution methods within the University of Dar es Salaam. It is therefore concluded that the task of leading the University is a dynamic one so there is a need for much more efforts to create a conducive environment that allows for more freedom in communication between students and the University Management and that conflict is not necessarily bad. So a balance between constructive and distractive conflict should be maintained. Also participation of students in decision-making in affairs concerning their lives at the University is imperative. University leaders should desist from viewing students and their union leaders as immature trouble - shooters who deserve threats and punishment. Therefore, it is recommended that since change is inevitable, the current management strategies, beliefs and the structure of the University need frequent reviewing. Feedback should be the primary operating principle especially at times of crisis management. Thus the University will ultimately need to exercise change in aspects related to leadership vs authority, socio-cultural development vs tangible development, full vs partial change strategies, knowledge application systems vs identification with bits of knowledge, sophisticated vs change models and finally change weighted vs stability-weighted organisation approach.
Conflict management, Crisis, Students' crises, University of Dar es Salaam
Muga, P. G. (2004). Students' crises management at the University of Dar es Salaam. Masters dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Available at (