With 45,000 students, 700 professors and 2,700 other academic staff across 18 faculties, LMU München is one of the largest universities in Germany. University Hospital Grosshadern, the home of LMU's medical faculty, is the largest teaching hospital in southern Germany, employing 7,600 people. The University maintains an extensive international network and collaborates academically with renowned partners from all over the world.
Like most modern academic institutions, LMU München is keen to explore new ways of sharing knowledge and supporting learning through the effective deployment of IT systems.
"You can think of a university as a loosely coupled network of people who share similar interests and goals," said Dr. Werner Degenhardt, Head of IT at the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences. "Basically, a university is just a very large community of practice that wants to manage ideas and knowledge efficiently and to foster new learning."
Different departments within the University had already been experimenting with a number of online collaboration platforms, but there was no overall strategy. The IT team in the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences decided to take the lead in introducing a standardised solution that would be flexible and extensible enough to meet the needs of all users in the Faculty, and potentially across the whole University.