Faculty Hiring Investment Program (HIP)
The Hiring Investment Program was announced to the campus in December 2013 as a program to provide resources to the schools, colleges and divisions to support additional opportunities for senate faculty hiring that either transcends the boundaries between traditional departments, schools and/or college or extends the disciplinary range of a single department, school or college into critical new areas resulting in a transformative augmentation of that unit.
Seventy-six proposals requsting a total of 339 FTE were received in late February 2014 and were initially reviewed during March and early April by a group of 28 faculty readers, representatives from the Academic Senate Committee on Planning and Budget and a number of Vice Chancellors and Vice Provosts. Each proposal was read and scored by a minimum of three faculty reviewers. Based on the input received from the first round of review, the provost sent forward 24 of the 76 proposals for further review by a 16-member faculty committee, including some faculty who were readers in the first round as well as others added for their disciplinary expertise. In the second round, reviewers considered all 24 proposals, which were individually discussed and evaluated at an all-day meeting May 10th.
Based on the input received at that all-day meeting, the provost will provide a total of 25 FTE in full or partial response to nine of the top-ranked HIP proposals. These fall naturally into five broad thematic areas. Of these FTE, 19 are allocated for searches to begin in Fall 2014; the remaining 6 are staged in the following year as set forward in the proposals. In addition, and as planned, the provost will be distributing $6M in start-up funds to the colleges/schools/divisions in support of these new hires. The provost and deans are currently engaged in discussions about office and research space and other resource issues that must be addressed to implement the search plans approved under the HIP process.
It is important to note the excellence of many of the HIP proposals, representing far more FTE than could be supported through this process. The faculty who developed these visionary, interdisciplinary and transformative proposals should be applauded for their efforts, and it is hoped that the faculty and leadership of the participating schools and colleges will seize on this opportunity and move forward with some of the ideas presented, using the resources available through growth under the 2020 initiative and the new budget model. In a few cases, the review panel made special note of proposals that, although not selected, had high potential to address key campus priorities. In these cases, the Provost looks forward to convening working groups to discuss with the proposal authors future steps that might be taken to address these ideas, either in the context of the next HIP competition in 2016 or through other means.
The proposals submitted to HIP illustrate once again the special strength of our faculty in developing visionary, interdisciplinary programs that address the important challenges facing our state, nation and the world. The searches supported through HIP, along with the many other searches occurring across the university over the coming years, also represent an unequaled opportunity for UC Davis to achieve its goal of substantially increasing the diversity of the faculty in every dimension, which bodes well for the future of the campus.