Faculty: Hiring of Women and Minority Faculty Members

Last Updated: 
Effective Date: 
Reason for Policy: 

To guide decision making in hiring faculty when the finalists include women or members of ethnic minorities.

Policy Statement: 

The University of Oregon endorses special positive efforts to facilitate the hiring of women and/or members of ethnic minorities specifically to give them the fullest possible consideration in terms of the broadest appropriate criteria. Among these criteria there must be recognition of the value to the University in having minorities and women on its faculty. Their presence on the faculty will help University of Oregon students to develop as educated men and women who will make their contributions in our complex, racially and ethnically diverse society. The University also affirms the primary role of the faculty in selecting new faculty members.


1. In a search for a new faculty member at the point where a small list of finalists has been selected, the following consideration shall be taken into account and acted upon as appropriate. If there are minorities or women included on this list, then the best qualified of them shall be chosen, unless it is determined that some other candidate is demonstrably better qualified for the position or that no candidate is adequately qualified. The purpose of this procedure is to guard against the use of a closely divided departmental judgment, or one based on a genuinely small difference perceived among candidates, in order to choose a white man over a woman or minority applicant. While a department's final choice made on the basis of overall quality and value to the department is paramount, it is the University's policy to do everything possible to assure a maximum opportunity for consideration of minorities and women.

2. When a proposed new appointee to a faculty position is a minority person or a woman, the person chairing the meeting considering the candidate should first seek to determine the views of the individual faculty members on the professional qualifications of the candidate, i.e., their best judgment of the candidate's substantive merit for the position. If it becomes apparent that a majority of the faculty group favor appointing the candidate, then even if a substantial number may be opposed to the candidate (and notwithstanding to the possibility that the group might be prepared to exclude the candidate from further consideration out of deference to the opinions of those opposed), the person chairing the meeting shall ask that no final negative decision be made until the matter has been discussed with the Dean of the school or College and with the Provost.

Further, no communication to the candidate or to outside parties regarding the decision shall be made until these discussions have been completed. So that the successful completion of the hiring process will not be impeded, these consultation shall be conducted as expeditiously as possible.

This review requirement does not suggest that the Dean or Provost will generally reverse the department's action, nor that their academic judgment will be substituted for that of the department. What it does mean is simply that the Dean and Provost will be cognizant of situations which, on the basis of careful examination, may be used both to bolster the University's affirmative action program and, at the same time, to bring excellent new faculty to the University.

Reviewed and Approved By: 
President's Staff
Issued by: 
Presidential Memorandum to the Faculty
Revision History: 

22 January 1986 - Originally promulgated as a Presidential Memorandum to the Faculty
07 February 1986 - Reviewed and Approval Recommended by the university president's Staff and Issued by the university president

08 February 2010 - Policy number revised from 3.140 to 02.01.15

Original Source: 
UO Policy Statement