Administrative Workstation Project at Indiana University


The four-year struggle to obtain NREN funding typifies the battles raging on university campuses during the past decade and into this decade. IT campus professionals need to sell the importance of information technology to their university budget officers. Efforts to sell the IT vision are plagued by the fact that network infrastructure initiatives require huge investments from the campus during a financially-bleak decade. Ironically, the confluence of budget woes and information explosion created a unique opportunity for Indiana University to sell the IT vision in 1990. University Computing Services and Management Advisory Services divisions at IU took advantage of this opportunity, developing an "Administrative Workstation Project" that would increase knowledge and use of the information technology by key administrators, would result in greater creativity and productivity in the management function, and would improve attitudes toward information technology. Thanks to a grant by Apple Corporation, the project placed mid-range Macintosh computers and a suite of software on the desks of 29 finance and administration executives and their assistants. One full year after completion of the project, we are able to assess the impact upon higher education executive attitudes toward information technology.

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