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ERIC Number: EJ944640
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Sep
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1553-7544
Extreme Makeover: IT Edition
Schaffhauser, Dian
Campus Technology, v25 n1 p36-40 Sep 2011
Air-traffic controller might be a relaxing second career for anyone who's coordinated IT operations at a large research university. Just ask administrators at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. As at most big universities, IT operations on the academic side are decentralized on a major scale. When a faculty member in one of Michigan's 19 schools or colleges identifies a need that can be served by technology, that school's own IT group researches and implements the solution. As a result, the institution excels at redundancy: A 2010 Accenture consulting project counted more than 40 e-mail services running on campus; 26 lecture capture systems; 42 ways to stream media; and 28 approaches for sharing documents. During good times, such an approach might be acceptable. But in an economic downturn, nobody tolerates that kind of waste. So, a little over a year ago, Michigan began a process to impose structure on the chaos. A new consultative-governance model was established that promises to transform how IT is funded and delivered to academic units, while ensuring better alignment with campus priorities. If successful, Michigan's governance initiative may provide a playbook for other large universities with faculty-led cultures that need to optimize IT spending. At the very least, the work being tried at Michigan will provide fresh ideas on how to involve faculty and other campus constituents in IT decisions.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Illinois; Michigan