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BFA endorses Schwartz resolution

Berkeley Faculty Association members:

A vote is now proceeding on a resolution introduced by Prof. Schwartz to the Berkeley Academic Senate for an inquiry into UC administration. The voting period is May 7 – May 21, 2010

To vote, go to: http://academic-senate.berkeley.edu/vote/resolution.html Use your CalNet ID and passphrase.

The BFA board urges members to vote Yes, even though we have certain reservations about the wording and timing of the resolution. We are concerned that a No vote could be taken as a statement against faculty involvement in administrative affairs at a time when there is real urgency to get more faculty input into university management and reform. With the Gould Commission reporting out by early Fall, the faculty need to be ready to be proactive, not just reactive, to coming changes that are likely to alter the future course of this great university.

Is this resolution the best way to proceed?

On the pro side, we believe that the resolution speaks to serious faculty concerns about the future of the University of California and that it shines a needed light on the role of UCOP and the Regents. Why does the Gould Commission’s charge not include a review of upper administration? Lack of transparency is a perennial sore-spot for faculty, even as cost-cutting erodes our ability to teach, research and administer programs. Leadership has also been lacking in generating support for the university from the state and general public.

On the con side, the resolution contains no specifics on what the charge of the review committee would be nor of the method by which the members of this committee would be selected. It is also possible that Berkeley-only investigation will be attacked by other campuses, reducing its value (on the other hand, if Berkeley does not act on this matter, who will get the ball rolling?)

Wendy Brown, Dick Norgaard, Chris Rosen & Dick Walker, for the board.

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