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Research Report

Increasing Central Fungible Dollars

Executive tactics to secure funding and garner buy-in for strategic priorities

January 12, 2016, By John Workman, Managing Director

Key Insights

The aftermath of the recession and unfavorable demographic shifts have combined as a serious threat to traditional business models. Ensuring future growth and success will require most campuses to make significant strategic investments in themselves to recalibrate offerings and serve a wider student population.

Planned strategic investments vary by size and type at each institution, but all will require significant capital. And unfortunately, higher education has historically struggled to adequately fund important strategic investments, especially compared to other industries.

The first, and likely most damaging, factor affecting investment in strategic priorities is decelerating tuition growth. Across the 1990s and early 2000s, most institutions funded strategic priorities primarily through enrollment growth. However, as tuition is now slowing or even declining at most institutions, tuition growth alone is not providing the resources necessary to fund high-priority initiatives.

This study outlines eight tactics to help institutions fund critical investments by increasing central dollars, organized into four main categories.

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