April 15, 2013


B. Proposal to Change the Composition of the C-13 Information Technology Committee (D 10287-10289b).

This legislation was presented by Professor Resta (curriculum and instruction and committee chair) at the beginning of the meeting just prior to the Secretary’s report.

Professor Resta reviewed the functions of the C-13 committee, which are to recommend to the president, the chief information officer, and the Faculty Council changes in policy regarding information technology and to consult with and advise the chief information officer about policies and procedures pertaining to information technology across the University. He further noted that the committee had established a new governance structure that increased the role and importance of the committee and was now able to meet its intended functions. The committee reports to the Strategic Information Technology Accountability Board (SITAB), which is chaired by the president of the University and provides an opportunity for faculty input into the information technology governance structure.

Professor Resta explained that the current legislative proposal would expand the base of input into the C-13 committee by including eight additional faculty members who are representatives of their colleges/schools’ faculty information technology committees. Deans of the units with faculty information technology committees would be asked to send the name of a committee member to the A-3 Faculty Committee on Committees. The A-3 committee would then send a slate of names to the president, from which appointments would be made. Two representatives would be selected each year for three-year terms, resulting in the full eight college/school representatives with staggered terms in place by 2016.

Professor Gordon Novak (computer science) expressed his concern that colleges/schools with faculty information technology committees, e.g., architecture, geology, information, and pharmacy, tended to be rather small units. He pointed out that large units, such as engineering and natural sciences, would be underrepresented because they do not have faculty information technology committees. After noting that the College of Liberal Arts, a large college, has a faculty information technology committee, Professor Resta explained that the proposal would not be limited just to the colleges/schools that presently have such committees. When Professor Novak probed that colleges/schools would have to create committees to be represented, Professor Resta said that his committee hoped to incentivize colleges/schools to have faculty input for their information technology decisions. Professor Novak felt that requiring the creation of increased bureaucracy to be included on the C-13 committee seemed unfortunate. Professor Resta explained that many of the current committee members were users of technology and recognized for their knowledge and expertise; however, the committee members believed that broadening the base of faculty input would benefit information technology outcomes across the University. Professor Novak countered by saying he thought there ought to be a better way of selecting representation for the committee.

Mr. Simeon Bochev (Student Government representative) noted that this change in committee composition would dilute student representation and asked if there was any intent to add additional student members to the committee. Professor Resta admitted that additional student representation had not been considered, but he assured Mr. Bochev that the committee had always been particularly attentive and responsive to student input and presumed that attitude would not change.

Professor Beckner supported Professor Novak’s earlier comments, but noted that the College of Natural Sciences was in the process of forming an information technology committee; he said he expected the College of Engineering to do so as well. He asked about further clarification regarding the actual process of member selection because he perceived that the proposal seemed somewhat vague in that respect. Professor Resta responded that the Committee on Committees had reviewed the proposal and deemed it workable. Professor Beckner asked if additional input from the Faculty Council Executive Committee and the Committee on Committees had been sought, to which Professor Resta responded that a great deal of input had been provided. He perceived that the Faculty Committee on Committees was competent to handle the process and emphasized that college/school representation would rotate on the C-13 committee under the proposed legislation.

Professor Patrick Davis (acknowledged the responsiveness and thoughtfulness of the C-13 committee in preparing the proposal.

Since there was no further discussion, Chair Hilley called for the vote, and the proposal was unanimously approved by voice vote . The Council meeting returned to the original agenda with the Secretary’s Report (see item "I").

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