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Conception of pilot applications

Lead Management: University of Konstanz

In the local environment, the chip card is used in many applications. In almost all universities that use a chip card, it serves as a medium for the payment system, as a library card and often also for entry and access systems. The use of existing services across institutions is to be promoted within the framework of the project. However, this is essentially a matter of organisational challenges, since the usability of the technology is often already given, or is created in topic 1. Rather, concepts for new chip card applications are to be investigated within the scope of topic 2.

AP 2.1: European Student Card

The "European Student Card (ESC)" initiative aims to enable all students to easily and securely identify and register at EU universities. The aim is to reduce the bureaucratic burden of registration to a minimum or even to avoid it in certain cases. The aim is to facilitate mobility and exchanges of students and to further promote development towards a genuine European educational area. At the same time, of course, local regulations must be observed. Mechanisms are being developed and established for the mutual recognition of student status, which participating institutions must implement.

The work package develops a concept for how these mechanisms can be integrated into the overall concept of a reliable bwCard. In doing so, points should also be considered that can be implemented jointly in order to keep the hurdle to optional ESC participation as low as possible for the individual university.

WP 2.2: Cashless Campus

Today, a wide range of fee-based additional services is available on the campus of every university, such as

  • the food offer in the respective refectories, supplemented by a large additional offer of beverage and food vending machines,
  • the university sport with numerous possibilities to rent sports equipment for a fee, to pay rent for a place or to book a course in a sport,
  • the library with the offers for document delivery services or simply the payment of fees due or
  • Continuing education offers for an additional qualification or as an offer for external persons of the university,
  • Excursions financed by a levy,
  • etc.

All these offers have in common that most of the amounts to be paid are less than 50 €. When paying these small amounts, the direct debit via a bank account causes a high effort or costs, which are in no relation to the actual debit amount. The handling of cash also causes high administrative effort and costs. As an alternative, payment cards, often operated by the Studierendenwerke in the form of electronic chip cards (electronic purse), have emerged in recent years. Here, a medium amount of money (e.g. 50 €) can be booked either in cash or by direct debit and the small amounts can be debited directly from electronic cash registers. These solutions are widely used in universities. Disadvantages of these solutions are:

  1. The high licensing costs for an electronic purse of the provider.
  2. The relatively high costs for the necessary IT infrastructure to revalue or devalue the sums of money. For cost reasons, such a procedure is therefore ruled out for cash registers with a very low turnover.
  3. The payment option is often limited to a local provider within the university (usually the respective student unions). For other payment partners, clearing (rebooking of cash flows) must be agreed individually, which can be very time-consuming.
  4. The restriction to one local provider of the university prevents payment options from being used at other universities as well. Due to the higher mobility of students and staff, many people need several chip cards in order to be able to use the offers at the respective university.

With the development of the bwCard, students and employees of Baden-Württemberg's universities have access to a data carrier that can be used across universities for the various services offered by a university. This also includes the billing of the respective paid additional offers of the universities.