Partnering with a private company to facilitate the management of a satellite campus is
happening more often, either within the same country or in terms of transnational education.
Julian Hall provides a great guide to trailblazers in this space.
ISSUE #25 | THE PIE REVIEW | 51
THE GROWTH OF branch campuses, or
sister sites to a university’s flagship institution,
has been significant in the 21st century, from 84
in 2000 increasing to 263 by 2015.
The story of these satellite HEIs, mainly coming as a
result of the desire of a ‘mothership’ university to push its
transnational education brand, has not played out without
incident, however. From 2016, there has been a slowdown
in activity along with closures of existing campuses arising
from misreading political and regulatory circumstances,
and, most common of all, over-reaching when it came to the
Managed campus partnerships
Managed campuses are one strand of the branch cam-pus
story and a way of universities transferring risk to a
corporate entity, hopefully avoiding some of the pitfalls
that have befallen other ventures. Within this section of
the branch campus family, there is an upward growth. This
is both in terms of overseas ventures and home country
ventures, which might also attract overseas students as
well as domestic ones.
A recent example of a new campus includes the new
‘learning facility’ in Sydney, which was established by the
Education Centre of Australia on behalf of Swinburne Uni-versity
of Technology. The facility was opened in January
at a ceremony attended by cricketing legend Brian Lara.
Meanwhile, in the same month and same country, Kaplan
announced a Melbourne venture with the University of
Adelaide. It is set to open in July 2020 and offers undergra-duate
and postgraduate courses, including IT, commerce,
accounting, and finance.
Kaplan also delivers courses for universities at its own
premises, for example in Kaplan Singapore and Kaplan
Hong Kong, and on behalf of various universities in the UK,
Ireland and Australia.
Reasons to partner
Scott Hillard, chief sales marketing officer at private provi-der
ATMC in Australia, lays out some of the headline finan-cial
benefits of managed campuses as: “Speed to market;
expansion with zero capital investment; a better financial
return gross margins from licensing agreements typically
exceed those from students who are studying directly at the
university, explains Hillard and less risk – providers assume
all of the fixed costs of operating the campus (facilities,
Depending on the university’s strategic aims and the ex-pertise
of the provider, there are other incentives beyond the
cornerstones of shared risk and corporate dexterity.
Nick Miller, marketing & recruitment director at QA Hig-her
Education in the UK, explains that a university’s reach
into his company’s corporate networks and, therefore, the
B2B market for higher education, has a discernible effect.