Tuesday Mid-day Learning Opps

Opening the Black Box of Decentralized Spend in Universities

  • Tuesday, July 24
  • 10:30 AM - 11:45 AM
  • Long Beach Conv Center
  • Level 1, 104A
  • MS


Paul Friga

Clinical Associate Professor, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Chief Strategy Officer and Co-Founder, Academic Benchmarking Consortium

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Haven Ladd

Managing Director

Parthenon EY

Boston, Massachusetts

Augie Maurelli

Assistant Vice President for Finance - Analysis & Operations

University of Delaware

Garnet Valley, Pennsylvania

Jamie Moffitt

Vice President for Finance and Administration and Chief Financial Officer

University of Oregon

Eugene, Oregon


Colleges and universities continue to scrutinize the “black box” of decentralized costs—how much do you spend and why? In this session, speakers will explore centralized versus decentralized spending by examining data from 10 leading U.S. universities that belong to the Academic Benchmarking Consortium. Overall costs by activity—including facilities, IT, finance, HR, research, communications, development, and student services—will be summarized and compared. Business officers from two universities in the dataset, with very different levels of centralized cost structures, will describe their respective journeys and plans for moving forward. Insights, strategic connections, and possible ramifications for all institutions will be explored.

Learning Objectives

  • Compare centralized versus decentralized spending when examining a university’s cost management structure.
  • Apply promising practices based on key activity data related to centralized and decentralized spending.
  • Develop a strategic framework for proactively managing costs while ensuring quality outcomes.