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ERIC Number: EJ845988
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Feb
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1553-7544
Buying Power
Villano, Matt
Campus Technology, v19 n6 p48-52 Feb 2006
Technology product procurement can be a daunting task for a college or university--especially a smaller institution--to accomplish alone. Perhaps this is why schools are tackling it by banding together. When it comes to purchasing technology, a little help from friends is the key to economies of scale, which frequently net schools the best bargains available. Simply put: Buying in bulk can offer significant advantages. Over the years, a number of consortia have experienced these benefits firsthand. In the Midwest, the Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities buys laptops as a unit, and distributes the hardware among its 20 member schools. In Appalachia, via the Maryland Independent College and University Association and the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, educators do the same with other technologies. In fact, each of these academic federations spend millions on technology every year. But without the consortium approach they have adopted, the individual schools that comprise each of them would be spending a great deal more. In this article, the author explores the realities of technology purchasing consortia by talking with prominent leaders of two such organizations: (1) the Claremont University Consortium in California; and (2) the Massachusetts Higher Education Consortium (MHEC). While Claremont is a relatively small consortium consisting of seven schools, MHEC is mammoth, comprising 83 schools, with more to come. Across both consortia, many campus leaders hail the pros of the collaborative buying approach, while some are keenly aware of the cons. Still, there is no disputing that consortium buying has changed the face of procurement forever. Perhaps two heads really are better than one.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California; Maryland; Massachusetts; Pennsylvania; Wisconsin