1 Few cases of entities having targets for costs and use
Reduced ability to follow up, review and improve the efficiency of an activity
In the opinion of the Swedish NAO, the HEIs in general work to improve effectiveness of provision of premises and the use of premises. Increased use of an internal rental system is an example of this, as well as the fact that more HEIs are working to follow up and review this system. At the same time, the Swedish NAO notes that there is a risk of poor economy and efficiency in provision of premises. Formulation of targets is a fundamental part of being able to follow up, review and improve the efficiency of an activity, but few HEIs have targets for costs of premises as a whole and for the use of the premises.
2 Applying commercial type of competitive rules to educational entity
The HEIs' need for special premises and development of integrated campuses limits competitive opportunities. According to the Swedish NAO there is also a conflict in that Akademiska Hus is to act in accordance with the Swedish Companies Act, at the same time as the company is expected to take active responsibility for improving competitiveness by selling land within its core stock.
In the early 1990s the Government decided to implement the "provision of premises reform". This reform aimed to achieve more effective use of resources at central government agencies and more effective management of real property and assets for the State as a whole. The reform was to put the relationship between property owner and tenant on a more arm's length basis. The central government agencies were also to be responsible for their own provision of premises and thus take comprehensive responsibility for the costs of the organisation.
Higher education institutions' (HEI) rental costs constitute a significant part of central government rental expenses. In 2016 the HEIs' costs of premises were SEK 8.5 billion, of which SEK 7.1 billion were rental costs. These extensive financial commitments justify the examination of whether the resources are used effectively.
The purpose of the audit is to assess whether the higher education institutions' provision of premises is effective and appropriate within the context of the guidelines for central 2(5 )
government property management decided by the Riksdag.
The audit covers all 31 state higher education institutions and the Chalmers University of Technology and the Jönköping University foundations.
The audit also covers the Government's management of more effective provision of premises and the state-owned company Akademiska Hus AB, which is charged with providing premises for universities and other higher education institutions.