UNH Faculty Senate

Motion on the Administrative Search Process Wording
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UNH Faculty Senate

Motion # IX-M11

Administrative Search Process Wording

 

1.  Sponsoring committee:  Ad-hoc Committee on Administrative Search Procedures

2.  Motion Presenter:  Ed Hinson

3.  Date of Faculty Senate discussion:  March 21, 2005

4.  Rationale:

 On 9-27-04 and 10-25-04, the Faculty Senate discussed a process for insuring adequate shared governance in academically-related administrative hires, which would provide for faculty input in unusual hiring circumstances.  The senate had asked for some wording changes; and Ed Hinson discussed them with the provost, reported on his responses, and now recommends to the senate that two sentences be added to item IV of the Process for Improving Shared Governance in Administrative Searches, to say that the Agenda Committee “will collate results of these consultations and provide them to the provost (or president, as appropriate)” and that “this consultation process does not limit or prevent direct communications concerning the matter from any faculty member to the relevant administrative officer”.  The September 27, 2004, Faculty Senate motion asked that this process be incorporated within the official university operating procedures. 

5.  Motion:

to forward to the provost the agreed-upon wording changes and ask that “A Process for Improving Shared Governance in Administrative Searches” be incorporated within official UNH policy.

6.  Senate Action:  passed, on March 21, 2005

Vote:  unanimous

Senate Chair’s signature:  Mimi Larsen Becker

Forwarded to:  President Ann Hart, on April 6, 2005

Forwarded to:  Bruce Mallory, on April 6, 2005

Forwarded to:  Mark Rubinstein, on April 6, 2005

Forwarded to:  Ed Hinson, on April 6, 2005

 

A PROCESS FOR IMPROVING SHARED GOVERNANCE IN ADMINISTRATIVE SEARCHES:

Final Form: 21 March 2005

(latest additions/revisions in bold)

The purpose of this note is to specify a process for insuring adequate shared governance in academically-related administrative hires, providing for faculty input in unusual hiring circumstances.

The following applies to appointments at the Dean level or higher.

I.  Two types of vacancies (and, by extension, search procedures) are specified: "usual" and "exceptional".

A usual vacancy is one in which the circumstances allow for an unhurried standard process with full participation by the faculty and other affected campus groups.

An exceptional vacancy is one in which the circumstances of its occurrence, or of its possible disposition, make the usual procedures potentially impossible, harmfully impractical, or otherwise significantly undesirable.

II.  In light of the great importance of such appointments to the faculty, and in affirmation of the principle of shared governance, when contemplating pursuing a vacancy as exceptional, the Administration (Provost, or President in the case when the vacancy is in the office of Provost/VPAA or Vice President for Research and Public Service) will consult with the Faculty Senate (as a principal channel of shared governance), concerning the circumstances which it believes exceptional, and may present a proposed process to be followed in the instance.

III.  The consultation described in (IV.) will be mandated, in cases where all four of the conditions below are met, and may be also be used in other circumstances (e.g., failed search with a dysfunctional committee (see fourth bullet below)).

   * a finding by the Provost (or President) of a vacancy that must be filled expediently;

   * a vacancy of exceptional nature: e.g., occurrence with little or no warning; at an awkward time of the year (e.g., end of the academic year); where the nature of the vacancy requires an immediate  incumbent (e.g., a failed search which normally would have produced a candidate in a timely manner);

   * the vacancy is at the Dean level or higher;

   * there is no existing search committee (having been convened for a national search which may have failed) with faculty representation to consult directly.

IV.  As with most formal administration communication with the Faculty Senate, this process will be initiated through the Faculty Senate Agenda Committee.  As the Agenda Committee is acting simply as a representative of and a conduit to the faculty, the Agenda Committee will consult, as thoroughly as circumstances of timeliness and availability permit (e.g., electronically during breaks and the summer, due to an adjourned Faculty Senate and the general reduced campus presence of faculty), with the faculty as a whole (through the Faculty Senate) and/or heavily affected subsets of the faculty (e.g., college executive committees).  It will collate results of these consultations and provide them to the Provost (or President, as appropriate).

This consultation process does not limit or prevent direct communications concerning the matter from any faculty member to the relevant administrative officer.  

If the above consultation results in an affirmation of the "exceptional" designation, further consultation between the Administration and Faculty Senate will be held regarding whether the appointment is to be "interim" or "permanent" (where the latter is understood to include longer "term" appointments).  [It is anticipated that in practice the two consultations would be conflated, since the first one would be considering the likely further consequences of the proposed exceptional status, which would certainly encompass the interim-vs.-permanent issue.]

A particular class of exceptional circumstance is the "failed search".  In this case, an interim appointment may be considered instead of the permanent one envisioned.  Were the process undertaken in this situation, the Agenda Committee would consult specifically with faculty representatives on the original search committee and affected department chairs, among others. 

V.  Both Faculty Senate and Administration affirm that shared governance implies that further exceptional circumstances beyond those envisioned here require further consultation in the manner of that described above.
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