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SENATE From the Senate Office

The following statement is published in accordance with the Senate Rules.
Among other purposes, the publication of SEC actions is intended to stimulate
discussion among the constituencies and their representatives.
Please communicate your comments to Executive
Assistant Carolyn Burdon,
Box 12 College Hall/6303, (215) 898-6943 or .

Actions Taken by the
Senate Executive Committee

Wednesday, March 20, 2002

1. Chair's Report. Professor David Hackney reported the proposed revised Misconduct in Research Policy is almost ready. The Senate Committee on the Faculty reviewed the latest revision and requested rearrangement and clarification. It is hoped the next revised document will reach the Committee on the Faculty this spring. The Committee on Administration heard a description of a study of the cost of research at Penn. SEC members requested that the full presentation be given at the next SEC meeting and that available written material be provided. Professor Hackney also noted that a proposed revised post-doctoral policy had been referred to the Senate Committee on Administration and the Council Committee on Research for review. The University Council Committee on Committees is reviewing the Council committees to see whether the size of some committees can be reduced, whether standing charges in the bylaws should be revised, or some committees should be combined or retired.

2. Past Chair's Report on Academic Planning and Budget Committee and Capital Council. Professor Gerald Porter stated that there has been one meeting of the Academic Planning and Budget Committee since the last Senate Executive Committee meeting. This meeting was devoted to discussions of the draft Strategic Plan. The committee received and discussed reports from the task forces on Building and Retaining an Outstanding Faculty; Arts, Humanities and Society; and Public Policy and Leadership.

There was also one meeting of Capital Council. Capital Council approved proposals for renovations of Rooms G1-6 of Williams Hall, creation of a Meyerson Executive Conference Room and Executive Suite in the Library, Landscaping for the Schattner Building in the Dental School, and an upgrade of MRI scanners in the Department of Radiology in the Medical School. In addition there was a mail poll on the development of a computer system to support research administration.

3. Committee on the Faculty Report on Gender Equity. Professor Stephen Burbank, chair, Senate Committee on the Faculty, presented the report (in this issue). SEC members thanked Professor Burbank for the excellent work. Professor Hackney drew attention to the procedural recommends in the report: (a) that women be adequately represented on standing personnel committees and on ad hoc search committees, and (b) the establishment of a system of pre-offer approval. A motion was made to endorse the report. SEC endorsed the report by an overwhelming majority.

4. Nominations for Committee Vacancies Spring 2002. Professor Peter Kuriloff, chair, Senate Committee on Committees, presented the list of nominations and SEC members added to it. A ballot will be distributed to SEC members.

5. Proposed Trustee Liaison Committee Appointment. Past Faculty Senate Chair Gerald Porter, who is currently serving as a faculty liaison to the Trustee Committee on Budget and Finance, proposed that, as a general policy, one of the two faculty liaisons to that committee should be the Past Chair of the Faculty Senate. The Past Chair currently serves on the Academic Planning and Budget Committee and on the Capital Council for one year. Professor Porter stated that this brings an important knowledge base to the trustee committee. He moved that the procedure be standardized by the Faculty Senate.

Further, Professor Porter recommended that the faculty trustee liaisons be asked to report regularly to the Senate Executive Committee.

SEC unanimously adopted the two proposals.

Professor Porter also noted that new trustee committees have been established since the faculty positions for liaisons were created but that no faculty have been invited to serve as liaisons on the new ones. The Senate Chairs will review the committees and, as needed, recommend faculty liaisons be added to those committees that currently have none.

6. Informal Discussion on the Strategic Plan. Deputy Provost Peter Conn attended SEC on behalf of the Provost. Professor Conn reported that a draft of the Strategic Plan was almost ready for publication. Faculty Senate Chair Hackney requested a briefing on recruiting and retaining the best faculty. Professor Conn stated the goals of the plan regarding faculty. Further, Deputy Provost Conn noted that the plan contains a section on graduate education that is about equal in length to the section on undergraduate education.

7. New Business. A SEC member raised a proposal made at a previous SEC meeting that suggested creation of a standing subcommittee of the Senate Committee on the Economic Status of the Faculty to have oversight of faculty pay levels. The SEC member said most faculty do not know how their salary compares to others in their department or school. It was noted that the Faculty Grievance Procedure takes too long on this matter. Chair-elect Mitchell Marcus stated this could be considered but that it would be important not to create another grievance commission. Another SEC member observed that it is possible to determine the quartile ranking of an individual's salary.

Almanac, Vol. 48, No. 27, March 26, 2002


March 26, 2002
Volume 48 Number 27

Five innovators and luminaries will receive honorary degrees at Commencement.
Total undergraduate charges for tuition, fees, room and board will increase 4.6 percent for the coming year.
The Senate Committee on the Faculty reports on the Gender Equity Report published December 4, 2001.

INS Restrictions on automatic visa revalidation could affect international scholars at Penn.

This year's Antiques Show will benefit Penn's Institute for Environmental Medicine.