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    August 2013

    A Collective Risk Register for Higher Ed

    I just returned from the EACUBO/Cornell Administrative Management Institute (AMI), held on the beautiful Ithaca campus each summer. My role in the week-long seminar was to weave together the variety of risk issues administrative managers face and share an ERM framework for addressing these risks. Having just written Risk Management: An Accountability Guide, I had a great opening for our discussion.

    AMI participants are campus administrators who serve all parts of a diverse campus, from facilities, to research and grants, to academic departments. The group developed the following Risk Register for their collective campuses, which is a great summary of the state of higher education risks today. In no particular order, but all on target for the risks on the minds of college and university administrators:

    1. Facilities: power outages and effect on research.
    2. Emergency response plan
    3. ADA compliance
    4. IT and data breaches
    5. Student yield (especially the summer "melt")
    6. Donor intent for gifts
    7. Declining support from federal and state governments
    8. Eroding support for basic research
    9. Declining enrollment
    10. Financial viability for high discounts
    11. Political security for study abroad and international travel
    12. Reputational risk
    13. Athletic issues: assaults and head injuries
    14. Minors on campus (and in laboratories)
    15. Intellectual property and technology transfer

    As we begin to open the doors for fall term, are you thinking of the risks that are new and different from last year and shifting resources to meet these challenges?

    By Janice M. Abraham, President and CEO


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