The State University of New York (SUNY)


• Preparation of a system-wide strategic plan.


In 2009 and 2010, AKA led a system-wide strategic planning process for SUNY in collaboration with its newly appointed chancellor, Nancy Zimpher, her senior leadership team, and representatives of SUNY’s 64 universities, colleges, and community colleges.


As the nation’s largest comprehensive system of public education, SUNY faced unprecedented challenges and opportunities that it wished to address through a four-phase strategic planning process, with the overarching goal of revitalizing the economy of New York and enhancing the quality of life for its citizens.

AKA's Approach

AKA facilitated a transparent, inclusive planning process that involved an 18-person strategic planning steering committee; a group of 200 representatives of SUNY’s 64 campuses; and 10 “statewide town hall conversations” that drew in additional constituents from across New York state. AKA drafted the final strategic planning document, which articulated six “big ideas” supporting the overarching goal of “revitalizing the economy of New York and enhancing the quality of life for its citizens”:

  • SUNY and the Entrepreneurial Century
  • SUNY and the Seamless Educational Pipeline
  • SUNY and a Healthier New York
  • SUNY and an Energy-Smart New York
  • SUNY and the Vibrant Community
  • SUNY and the World


For each big idea, the strategic plan proposed three major, measurable initiatives and illustrated how each would also advance SUNY’s commitment to diversity.

Following the launch of the strategic plan in April 2010, SUNY embarked on an internally led implementation process and AKA was invited to assist with coordination of the many implementation teams.

Services Provided