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Our strategic planning process

In September 2021, CSE launched a strategic planning initiative to articulate how the Division should stride forward into the future. Our collective project has been named the Strategic Action Plan to emphasize our commitment to developing a framework that will have real and measurable impacts. Engaging faculty, staff, students, and our broader community in providing innovative ideas and feedback, we are in the process of crafting the mission, vision, values, priorities, and goals that will shape the culture and progress of the Division over the coming years.

This page details how the Action Plan is coming together, and will outline the processes and products of its key focus areas as they evolve.


The Action Plan will be developed by four teams focused on different key projects, as well as one overall organizing team.

Strategic Action Leadership Team (SALT)

SALT oversees the strategic planning process, teams, communications, and products. For more effective ongoing integration of the initiative’s activities, SALT members will also serve on one of four teams: Mission Vision Values, Culture and Community, Computer Science Knowledge, Enrollment and Admissions.

Michael Wellman
Lab representatives:
AI: Rada Mihalcea
CE: Scott Mahlke
IS: Alanson Sample
Sys: J. Alex Halderman
Th: Nikhil Bansal
Staff representatives:
Kelly Cormier 
Donna Bender

Mission, Vision, and Values Team (MVV)

The MVV Team will carry out a division-wide grass roots process providing opportunities for input from students, staff, and faculty to develop mission and vision statements and a set of values that represent our CSE collective identity. The mission, vision, and values define us internally, across the College and University, and to all those who may encounter us in the world, such as prospective students, funders, collaborators, and peer institutions.

Mission: Why do we exist and do the work that we do?
Vision: What will we work toward achieving?
Values: How do we conduct ourselves?

Donna Bender (Co-Chair)
Mahdi Cheraghchi (Co-Chair)
Zach Champion
Ben Kuipers
SALT Member: Kelly Cormier
SALT Member: J. Alex Halderman

Progress to date:
• September – October, 2021: Mission, vision, and values development
• November 2021: Draft mission, vision, and values community feedback; refinement based on input
• January 2022, Mission/Vision/Values complete

Culture and Community Team (C&C)

C&C sets out to investigate how the CSE community can work together, in all realms of activity, to actualize the Division’s values, move toward its How we can work together, in all realms of our activities, to actualize our values, move toward our vision, and strive for CSE members’ respect, fulfillment, growth, and belonging will be the focus of the C&C Team.

Ron Dreslinski (Co-Chair)
Chad Jenkins (Co-Chair)
Li Harper
Jon Merrill
Atul Prakash 
SALT Member: David Chesney
SALT Member: Rada Mihalcea

Progress to date:
September-October 2021: Review previous surveys and reports on CSE climate and culture, identify stakeholders, and draft a set of priorities for feedback.
November, 2021: C&C Open Call to all members of the CSE community about priorities for improving the Division’s culture.
December, 2021-March, 2021: Engagement in more in-depth conversations with community members and organizations (particularly those who may not typically have a voice in the Division).

Computer Science Knowledge Team (CSK)

The CSK Team will examine the status and various futures of the computer science field and stake out CSE roles as learners and explorers. Advancing integration and creative synergies between education and research activities will be a guiding principle in the development of CSK priorities and goals.

Todd Austin (Co-Chair)
Joyce Chai (Co-Chair)
Steve Crang
Quentin Stout
SALT Member: Scott Mahlke
SALT Member: Alanson Sample

Progress to date:
September, 2021: Team kickoff
October-November, 2021: Consideration of themes, disciplines, and mechanisms for evolving research and pedagogy

Enrollment and Admissions Team (EAT)

EAT was convened in early 2021 to develop recommendations for addressing the ongoing challenges of soaring undergraduate enrollment, trends which have significant implications for both C&C and CSK consideration.

Donna Bender (Co-Chair)
Brian Noble (Co-Chair)
Bill Arthur
Taylor Bruns
Mark Guzdial
Rose Sherry
SALT Member: Nikhil Bansal

Progress to date:
May 2021: CSE faculty endorsed EAT enrollment and admissions proposal
September-November, 2021: Elaboration of the components of the new enrollment and admissions model, consultation with relevant peer institutions, discussions with CoE and LSA leadership, and preparation of implementation plan.
December, 2021: Completion of Implementation Plan and presentation to faculty.