Promotion & Tenure: What’s Fair?

Categories: Bargaining, Bargaining Updates 2010, Promotions, Tenure, Transparency

Our bargaining Proposal 2 flows from the premise that UBC faculty members have the right to promotion and tenure processes that are fair. We should be able to trust that the evidence is appropriate, that the processes are iterative and responsive, that there are safeguards and mechanisms to ensure accountability. Standards should be reasonable and calibrated to the work we’re actually in a position to carry out. We don’t think this is an unreasonable request!

We’ve proposed to the University several ways to achieve these goals:

  1. no discrimination in promotion and tenure, including for career-interruptions
  2. explicit recognition that norms and expectations will vary by department, faculty and campus, and should be properly contextualized
  3. ensuring that reviewers of files (referees, SAC) understand the context and relevant factors (availability of lab-space and access to graduate students, for example)
  4. getting referees to focus on the evidence they actually have (on scholarly achievement) rather than asking them to speculate without evidence on teaching, service, or UBC tenure-norms
  5. ensuring that service work is appropriately valued.

We’ll update you as we hear back from UBC on these means to improve the fairness and transparency of the tenure promotion processes on our campuses.