Lean HE Americas

How to get involved:

Getting involved is easy – send along your contact information and we’ll connect you with our network of Lean practitioners. You'll be placed on an email list, and receive a confirmation. The email list is used to communicate meeting dates, information, and updates related to the group.

If you're interested in participating in an upcoming event, let us know and we'll connect you.

Contact Information:

Ruth Archer, PhD
Director of Continuous Improvement, Michigan Technological University, Michigan, USA raarcher.906@gmail.com

Publications and Links to Resources in the Higher Education Field:

Lean Higher Education: Increasing the Value and Performance of University Processes, 2nd ed., 2020, William K. Balzer

A Guide to Evidencing the Benefits of Change in Higher Education, 2017, Heather Lawrence and Nicola Cairns

Network for Change and Continuous Innovation: www.ncci-cu.org

Upcoming Events:

2021 Lean HE Conference, Glasgow, Scotland,
Virtual, October 20-22, 2021

Lean Book Club Discussion
Learning to Lead, Leading to Learn, by Katie Anderson. Two virtual 50 minute sessions, on Tuesday Aug 10 (Part 1 and Leadership Lessons 1 through 8) and Tuesday Aug 24 (Part 2 Case Studies and Reflecting on Failure), at 12:10 PM EST.

Lean Quick Takes
4pm EST, 17 Aug 21, 16 Nov 21, 15 Feb 22, 17 May 22
A quarterly 50-minute virtual event that showcases 3 Lean-related ideas, 15 minutes each, with 8-10 minutes of presentation and 4-5 minutes of Q&A for each idea. The purpose of Lean HE Quick Takes is to educate our Lean higher ed community on Lean culture, principles, processes, methods, and tools as they are applied at universities and colleges.

Lean Coffee Chats. 2nd and 4th Tuesdays at 4:30 EST. ★★ This is a weekly, 30 minute, virtual networking event. Our purpose is to get to know our colleagues. It's a casual, drop in event. There is no expectation of attending every week. You'll be automatically invited when your email is added to our list.


The Lean HE Americas division gives university, college, and community college Lean practitioners in North and South America an opportunity to network and learn from others in the Lean-in-higher-education arena. This forum will give members opportunities to share best practices and emerging techniques that will support service improvement across their organization. The network will support the use of Lean methodology in higher education. We would like to invite higher education organizations who are practicing Lean, or are in the process of adopting this methodology for their business process improvement initiatives, to join the network.

Lean HE Americas Steering Committee

Lean HE Americas is governed by a steering committee. The following universities are currently represented on the Committee:

  • Ruth Archer, PhD, Chair, Michigan Technological University, USA

  • Kimberley Snage, Vice Chair and Canada Network Lead, University of Waterloo, Canada

  • Krista Schulte, 2019 International Conference Host, University of Michigan, USA

  • Eric O. Olsen, PhD, California Polytechnic State University, USA

  • Ray Konecsni, Canada Network Lead, University of Regina, Canada

  • Bill Balzer, PhD, Bowling Green State University, USA

  • Mark McKenzie, University of Washington, USA

  • Jitendra Singh, DHSc, Minnesota State University, USA

We welcome all interested higher education staff and faculty to attend our seminars, meetings and conferences. Members of the network are from the organizations listed below:

  • Algonquin College, USA

  • Berea College, USA

  • Bowling Green State University, USA

  • California Institute of the Arts, USA

  • California Polythechnic State University, USA

  • Capella University, USA

  • Conestoga College, Canada

  • Cornell University, USA

  • Des Moines Area Community College, USA

  • Ferris State University, USA

  • George Fox University, USA

  • Illinois Institute of Technology, USA

  • Indiana University, USA

  • Iowa State University, USA

  • Kent State University, USA

  • Kettering University, USA

  • Marquette University, USA

  • McMaster University, Canada

  • Miami University, USA

  • Michigan State University, USA

  • Michigan Technological University, USA

  • Minnesota State University Moorhead, USA

  • Mt Hood Community College, USA

  • New Brunswick Community College, Canada

  • Oberlin College, USA

  • Ohio University, USA

  • Ohio Wesleyan University, USA

  • Ryerson University, Canada

  • Southern New Hampshire University, USA

  • St Norbert College, USA

  • The Ohio State University, USA

  • University of California Davis, USA

  • University of California Irvine, USA

  • University of California San Diego, USA

  • University of California Santa Barbara, USA

  • University of Central Oklahoma, USA

  • University of Colorado, USA

  • University of Dayton, USA

  • University of Illinois, USA

  • University of Maine, USA

  • University of Manitoba, Canada

  • University of Miami, USA

  • University of Michigan, USA

  • University of Michigan HSC, USA

  • University of New Brunswick, Canada

  • University of North Alabama, USA

  • University of North Texas, USA

  • University of Northern Iowa, USA

  • University of Regina, Canada

  • University of Tennessee HSC, USA

  • University of Texas Arlington, USA

  • University of Texas Dallas, USA

  • University of Toronto, Canada

  • University of Utah, USA

  • University of Washington, USA

  • University of Waterloo, Canada

  • Utah Valley University, USA

  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, USA

  • Wayne State University, USA

  • Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada

  • Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College, USA

  • Worcester Polytechnic Institute, USA

News and Updates