Thursday, October 8, 2020
Inside Higher Ed, New Push for a Shift in Promotion and Tenure:
Academics from 67 universities nationally have unanimously voted to approve a set of recommendations for recognizing innovation and entrepreneurial achievements among the criteria for higher education faculty promotion and tenure.
The proposal is not to add a fourth prong to the traditional three of teaching, research and service. Rather, it is to place innovation and entrepreneurship within the three prongs.
In addition, the proposal aims to be noncontroversial by saying that colleges and universities could let faculty members decide whether to be evaluated on that basis. But judging from the reaction of the American Association of University Professors, which was not consulted on the proposal, there is a controversy.
The proposal came out of a National Science Foundation grant to Oregon State University to study whether it should add support for innovation and entrepreneurship into its tenure and promotion guidelines. That led to the creation of the Promotion and Tenure, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Coalition, which includes officials from the 67 universities. And while they unanimously back the idea, they are not in charge of tenure and promotion at their universities. The universities include Arizona State, Brown, Emory, Michigan State, New York and Purdue Universities and the Rochester Institute of Technology; the Universities of California at Berkeley, Los Angeles and San Diego; and the Universities of Colorado, Georgia, Mississippi and Washington.
The recommendations are outlined here and called by the organizers "a seismic shift in promotion and tenure."