Higher Ed Web Development Gets Flattened
(or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the New World Order)

HighEdWebDev 2007 – October 16, 2007

Contact Information

  • Mark Greenfield
  • Director of Web Services
  • Mail Drop: 109 Norton Hall
  • Office Location: 454 Porter Hall
  • State University of New York at Buffalo
  • Buffalo, N.Y. 14260
  • Phone: (716)645-2811
  • Fax: (716)645-7761
  • Email: markgr@buffalo.edu


What happens when web development becomes a commodity? Globalization 3.0, the arrival of the technically adept Millennial Generation, and the ongoing Communications Revolution will create a perfect storm that will forever change the college campus and the way we work. The services provided by web professionals will be disaggregated, distributed, produced and reassembled with amazing efficiency. It may well be that many of our services will be outsourced in the relatively near future.

This presentation will explore the forces of globalization and free agency and the changes in what we call work, how and why the higher education web profession will get flattened, and provide guidance on how to not only survive, but thrive in this new paradigm.

Presentation Format

For several years, I have been looking for a way to eliminate, or at least greatly reduce, my use of PowerPoint. Instead I want to utilize some of the principles of an unconference (See Understanding the Unconference). I’m looking for ways to leverage the “Wisdom of Crowds” to get the audience more involved. So instead of 60 minutes of me talking with PowerPoint illustrating the key points, I will be using the following format:

  • Participants will have an opportunity to see the ideas and themes prior to the conference and be encouraged to provide comments, suggestions and feedback which will be incorporated into the final presentation. This will be done through a series of posts on my blog at markagreenfield.com.
  • I will follow the 20/20 format of Pecha Kucha – 20 slides for 20 seconds each for a total time of 6:40 seconds. The remainder of the time will be for audience conversation and dialogue (For more information on Pecha Kucha, see del.icio.us/markgr/PechaKucha.
  • I have created a channel on Jaiku that we will use before, during, and after the presentation to further the conversation. The URL is jaiku.com/channel/highedwebdev2007.

This year’s presentation is called “Higher Ed Web Development Gets Flattened or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the New World Order”. The basic premise is that the same forces of globalization that have flattened the business world will soon flatten higher education and there will certainly be repercussions for our profession. The goal is to explore what our jobs may look like in the future, and what we can do to prepare.

Recommended Books

  • Cairncross, Francis. The Death of Distance. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School, 1997
  • Covey, Stephen. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. New York, NY: Fireside, 1989
  • Friedman, Thomas. The World is Flat Version 2.0. New York, NY: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007
  • Godin, Seth. Small is the New Big. New York, NY: Penquin Group, 2006
  • Goleman, Daniel. Emotional Intelligence. New York NY: Bantam Books, 2007
  • Howe, Neil and Strauss, William. Millennials Go to College American Association of Collegiate Registrars 2nd Edition. 2007
  • Kurzweil, Ray.The Singularity is Near. New York NY: Penquin, 2005
  • Malone, Thomas. Inventing the Organizations of the 21st Century. Boston, MA: MIT Press, 2003
  • Pink, Daniel. Free Agent Nation. New York, NY: Warner Business Books. 2001
  • Pink, Daniel. A Whole New Mind. New York, NY: Penguin Books 2005
  • Tapscott, Daniel and Williams, Anthony. Wikinomics. New York, NY: Penquin Group, 2006


YouTube Video