Financial Sustainability

New strategies, models and technologies

While the cost of providing higher education continues to increase, traditional sources of revenue—such as state funding, tuition, and endowments­—are decreasing, forcing leaders in higher ed to find new ways to remain viable. By employing new strategies, business models and technologies, and finding smarter ways to use available data, these leaders are fostering a climate of creativity and innovation, reshaping the way colleges and universities can sustain themselves.

Want to learn more about our higher education insights? Download our 2018 TIAA Institute Higher Education Thought Leadership Annotated Bibliography.

Insights

Also produced by the TIAA Institute, Insights features reports addressing prominent issues in financial security, higher education, and philanthropy. While typically written for a primarily non-technical audience, Insights are prepared using the same level of academic rigor found in our other research publications, and can serve as valuable sources of information for a diverse group of readers.

April 2018

The financial sustainability of private residential higher education is under siege, as revenue growth slows and costs continue to rise.

December 2017

Higher education leaders are continually urged to innovate as they guide their institutions into the future. This compendium of research and best practices explains how successful institutions have translated this call to action into tangible results.

September 2017

The decision to consolidate or merge higher education institutions is never easy, and the process is nearly always painful and costly. But given the potential benefits, and current fiscal realities, leaders need to consider mergers in their long-term strategic plans.

Research Reports

Original research produced by the TIAA Institute—both independently and in collaboration with noted scholars—examines topics of interest to the academic, nonprofit and public sectors. The reports combine statistical findings with thoughtful, data-driven observations and conclusions to provide in-depth analyses that are informative and appropriate for both technical and more academic audiences.

October 2016

Performance funding applies financial incentives to higher education, tying a portion of public institutions’ state appropriations to retention rate, degree completion and other student outcomes.

November 2015

Despite the increasing role of 401(k) plans as retirement vehicles, little is known about how mutual fund families acting as 401(k) plan service providers influence the investment choices offered in their plan.

October 2015

While a number of published studies have measured how the number and mix of fund options influence investment patterns in retirement accounts few, if any, have examined how plan participants react to a large reduction in investment choices.