Considerations for Managing Bandwidth Demand

Topics: Information Technology

This is a preview of restricted content.

  • If you are an EAB member, please log in.
  • If you are logged in and still see this message, the content is outside your membership portfolio, and we invite you to learn more by contacting us.
  • If you are not an EAB member and wish to learn more, please contact us.

Research Questions

  • What is the maximum amount of bandwidth delivered to institutions’ residence halls?
  • To what extent do institutions track students’ bandwidth use, and how does this information factor into the determination of bandwidth allocation to residence halls and other buildings?
  • What strategies do institutions employ, or plan to employ, to address increasing bandwidth demand from their residential networks?
  • How do institutions fund bandwidth costs?


Institutions have an obligation to provide residential students with fast and reliable internet service, but rapid growth in residence hall bandwidth demand raises significant challenges related to network capacity, equitable access, and cost management. The massive student migration to wireless connectivity also promises to complicate traditional methods of bandwidth allocation. This brief examines the amount of bandwidth that institutions provide to their residence halls and presents strategies for managing bandwidth demand. It describes how institutions fund the cost of their residential bandwidth and highlights partnerships and consortia that help institutions cut costs and affordably expand network capacity.