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  • Universities and research facilities

Universities and research institutes

We have the expertise to assist you as peers in all essential issues.

Auditing of the budget accounting in line with state legislation
All universities are required to budget in line with the respective state financial regulations. Depending on the federal state, there are different rules which BDO takes into account in its auditing in the respective federal states. Thanks to our experienced, knowledgeable, interdisciplinary team, you can always draw on experts who will successfully guide your university through an audit.

University resource management
With our experienced and multidisciplinary team, we support you in your transformation projects with a view to state-of-the-art university resource management. Our focus here is on the fields of financial accounting, asset accounting, liquidity management, third-party funds, budgeting, planning, controlling, personnel, procurement, facility management and IT at the university. Our basic understanding is to create multifunctionality, that is, to serve all internal and external stakeholding groups on the basis of integrated and consolidated university accounting. In the context of project management, we help you model the required professional, organisational and technical aspects in a balanced relationship and in line with your objectives and priorities.

Separate accounting
The EU Commission has tasked universities with providing their economic activities on terms typical of the market. The Union framework from 31 July 2014 did not essentially changed this rule. Our task is to advise you with regard to this issue or to perform target-oriented auditing. We are also supported here by our experts in the field of state aid law.

IT projects
Where IT adds value by providing strategy-compliant support to business processes, the experts from our PBC division have extensive experience in terms of IT-specific better-practice approaches in the university environment with a focus on higher education resource management. Expertise in the management of complex transformation processes (IT project and portfolio management), which can result from a related update of IT, round off our experts’ consulting profile.

Organisational consulting
Our organisational consulting in the field of higher education and research institutions focuses on structural and process-oriented organisation issues in the context of higher education resource management in combination with IT-based optimisation of business processes. In particular in the area of the third-party funds/sponsorship funds management, BDO supplements the necessary consultancy expertise with appropriate legal expertise in the field of funding law.

Third-party funding applications and auditing
Applying for grants for research projects from the various funding organisations (BMBF, DAAD, DFG, etc.) requires special expertise in the field of financial contribution law or of the sponsorship conditions, as well as of the individual benefit options.
Following a successful application, orderly financial management and, in particular, correct settlement of the funds in the form of intermediate and final disposition statements to avoid claims for reimbursement of funds.
We can help both in the choice of a matching grant programme for the application as well as assisting in accounting for third-party funding. We are happy to support you from sponsorship acquisition through to the controlling of funds.
We also have a pool of experienced auditors to confirm your final disposition statements in an audit-proof manner.

Internal audit
BDO’s internal auditing service in the field of higher education offers objective auditing and consulting activities that are independent of daily business. This includes the analysis and assessment of the effectiveness of relevant aspects of organisational control and implementation, such as risk management, the internal control system and environment, as well as governance of the university organisation. Its purpose is the continuous improvement of business processes and the creation of added value for the university.

Tax consultancy
Contract research, staffing, training, issuing expert opinions – these are just a few of a university’s activities that are of a commercial nature and thus subject to taxation. In addition, the parent organisation also needs to investigate whether special VAT circumstances need to be observed. In particular the development of §13 b of the German VAT law (UStG) must be observed here. We are happy to assist you in the implementation of your tax obligations and provide advice on modelling scope. Our experts from the public-sector enterprises division can be called in for this purpose.

In all of these focus areas, we have the extensive experience needed to best support you in discovering your options. Our experts have in-depth knowledge of the challenging issues of budget and state aid law, as well as of accounting by universities.