February 2018

Social Purpose Finance and Administration in Higher Education – Sample Practices

Posted in Implementation and Integration

This is a short paper introducing the concept of Social Purpose Finance and Administration in Higher Education. It includes sample practices of Social Purpose Finance and Administration in Higher Education in action.

Social Purpose Finance and Administration in Higher Education is a partnership between the McConnell Foundation and Canadian Association of University Business Officers (CAUBO). They are collaborating on a national initiative to support post-secondary institutions across Canada in exploring emerging trends and expectations in social purpose finance and administration in higher education.

This initiative stems from broader research McConnell and Simon Fraser University pioneered last year on the roles post-secondary institutions can play to enhance community well-being – including and beyond their primary mandates of teaching and research. This concept — known as social infrastructure — is described in their report (authored by Coro), Maximizing the Capacities of Advanced Education Institutions to Build Social Infrastructure for Canadian Communities, which lists the capacities and assets of universities, colleges and polytechnic institutes that can be mobilized to meet community needs.

CAUBO and McConnell seek to identify industry best practices and support administrators in learning about embedding greater social value in domains such as human resources, facilities management,

procurement, investment, risk management, planning and budgeting and ancillary services. While many administrative officers are already familiar with social and sustainable procurement and social and sustainable investment, the aim is that eventually all core administrative functions will have a more explicit social component.

This paper lists fifteen finance and administration roles that can be harnessed for greater social benefit, and nearly 20 sample practices of social purpose finance and administration in higher education.

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