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Welcome to the Senate

The Academic Senate is the voice of the faculty in the University of California. The Senate is the one organization that enables the faculty, through shared governance, to exercise its right to participate in the University's governance. To that end, faculty and administrators depend on a high level of consultation, trust, mutual respect and a tradition of collegial collaboration. It is for these reasons that the Academic Senate seeks wide faculty involvement for all of its councils and committees.

UC Systemwide Academic Senate (Academic Council)

UCSB in the News

  • Guiding Light

    Where would modern life be without the internet as we know it? When the technology became mainstream in the 1990s, demand for high-speed data transmission explo…

  • It's On

    Shiny, happy people holding hands — er, boxes. Lots and lots of boxes. It was all smiles across the many faces of UC Santa Barbara throughout 2018 move-in activ…

  • Crowd Counting Through Walls with WiFi

    Researchers in UC Santa Barbara professor Yasamin Mostofi’s lab have given the first demonstration of crowd counting through walls using only everyday communica…

  • Share and Share A Bike

    That’s how we roll. Long recognized as a bike-friendly campus — for reasons apparent to anyone attempting to cross any one of its many bike paths in between cla…

  • Call Me Gobsmacked

    If you want to feel run over and left for dead by new media technology, consider this: “Moby Dick” has been translated into emojis. True story. Herman Melville’…

  • Smartphone, M.D.

    In a potential game changer for the health care industry, a new cell phone app and lab kit now allow a smartphone to identify bacteria from patients anywhere in…

  • You Are Welcome

    UC Santa Barbara will continue the tradition of welcoming incoming undergraduate students to the experience of higher education during New Student Convocation,…

  • On the Right Path

    UC Santa Barbara employees are officially on the path — UCPath, that is. This month marks the official “cutover” — in which UCSB transitions from the antiquated…

  • ‘A Promising Model’

    The big goal? To create a more diverse STEM faculty at colleges and universities nationwide. How to achieve it? First join forces with three other institutions…

  • It Pays to Get Along

    For a social species, humans are notoriously prone to unsocial behaviors. It’s a truth that’s led scholars to ask a deceptively simple question: How do we get p…

  • Dust, Rain and the Poles

    Every year, the global climate transports billions of tons of dust around the world. These aerosols play a key role in many of Earth’s geological and biological…

  • Sniffing Out Sharks

    A white shark’s acute sense of smell is legendary, allowing it to detect a potential meal several miles away — and giving pause to those of us who work and play…

  • ‘The Possessive Investment in Whiteness’

    Two decades ago, a book by Black studies scholar and sociologist George Lipsitz fueled national discussions of race in America. Twenty years later, the conversa…

  • ‘Consorts’

    Beautiful, homely, idiosyncratic and provocative. Those superlatives are among the many being used to describe a new exhibition at UC Santa Barbara by locally b…

  • Value Proposition

    Developers and landowners often spurn governmental regulations, arguing that they raise costs and generate frustration when managing properties. But a new study…

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Chair of the Academic Senate

Henning Bohn

Henning Bohn
Divisional Chair
Economics


(805) 893-2886

News & Announcements

Duncan Mellichamp Receives Oliver Johnson Award

The Oliver Johnson Award for Distinguished Leadership in the Academic Senate is given every two years to a faculty member who has provided outstanding service to the Academic Senate. It is the highest honor given by the Academic Senate, at the systemwide level, to one of its members.

Professor Emeritus Duncan Mellichamp is a worthy and appropriate recipient of this award, both for his service as Chair of the systemwide Academic Senate in 1996-97 and his service as Chair of UC Santa Barbara's Academic Senate in 1990-92. Professor Mellichamp was one of six founding faculty members of the Chemical Engineering Department in 1965. Professor Mellichamp has amassed an exceptionally dedicated record of service to both UCSB and the UC for over the past 50 years. During his time as Academic Council Chair, he initiated processes to assess how effectively the Senate represents faculty interests in areas where administration has primary responsibility. The Task Force on Governance, established by the Academic Council in November 1996, represented the first full-scale review of the organization and operations of the University- wide Senate to be conducted in more than three decades.

Professor Mellichamp’s service in the University-wide Senate is perhaps most remembered by his very strong advocacy with the Regents for the inclusion of “same-sex” domestic partners in UC employee benefits. To quote from the November 1997 issue of the Notice of the Academic Senate. "The Regents’ September consideration of this proposal was an outgrowth of an extended discussion they had regarding domestic partners in July. That discussion, in turn, was prompted by an earlier plea from last year’s Academic Council Chair, Duncan Mellichamp, that the board take the issue up.” Professor Mellichamp’s early (and ultimately successful) advocacy for this position is yet another testimony to his exceptionally strong ethics and sense of academic community.

The systemwide Senate website has more information about the Oliver Johnson Award.


Posted: May 17, 2018

Council on Faculty Welfare, Academic Freedom and Awards
The Council on Faculty Issues and Awards (CFIA) has been renamed as Council on Faculty Welfare, Academic Freedom and Awards (CFW). The Council's standing Committee on Faculty Welfare and Academic Freedom has also been renamed as Committee on Academic Freedom (CAF). These changes are intended to clarify that the entire council is charged with addressing a broad spectrum of faculty welfare issues, while the subcommittee focuses on academic freedom only.
Posted: March 8, 2018

UCSB Graduate Council Statement on Proposed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act
Posted: December 13, 2017

Discussion of Regents’ Special Meeting of Nov. 16, 2017

Academic Council held a special meeting on Nov. 17, 2017 to discuss the ramifications of the interference in a State Audit by UC President Napolitano and her staff. Our concerns are summarized in the posted minutes of the meeting.

The Regents have publicly released an investigative report by former California supreme court justice Carlos Moreno (Moreno Report), a statement of reprimand, and an apology by President Napolitano. The Moreno Report is worth reading in its entirety. The Academic Senate will carefully consider all courses toward improvement in University governance.


Posted: November 30, 2017

Letters Regarding Retiree Health
This summer, the UC Office of the President proposed changes in retiree health benefits for faculty and staff to reduce the University’s cost and liabilities for retiree health. Notably, a proposal was placed on the July Regent’s agenda to remove the 70 percent floor for the University’s annual aggregate contribution to the retiree health benefit program. The Regent’s item was pulled after the Academic Senate (and others) objected strongly. I have been involved in the ensuing systemwide discussions as member of the Task Force on Investment and Retirement (TFIR) as well as Academic Council. I am pleased to report that President Napolitano has agreed to defer changes and to form a Working Group with Academic Senate members that will make recommendations for 2019. The Academic Senate’s position is well summarized in two letters, dated Oct.5, 2017 and July 6, 2017, respectively.
Posted: October 5, 2017

Classroom Protocol Survey
The Undergraduate Council is conducting a survey to collect data about faculty experiences and observations in the classroom. We are especially interested in the use of electronics, academic integrity, student engagement, and academic preparation. Your response will inform discussions of possible revisions in education policy, changes in orientation materials, and communications to students regarding classroom expectations. You will receive an email with a unique survey link during the week of May 22. We would deeply appreciate your help.

All responses are confidential and results will be reported only in the aggregate.
Posted: May 18, 2017

Academic Council Statement Opposing President Trump’s Executive Order on Immigration
Posted: February 6, 2017

Chancellor’s Letter – Update to Our Campus Community on Immigration Executive Order
Posted: February 2, 2017

Academic Council Support of UC Statement on President Trump’s Executive Order
The Academic Council released a letter of support (dated January 30, 2017), on the UC Statement on President Trump’s Immigration Executive Order (dated January 29, 2017).
Posted: February 2, 2017

Academic Council Endorsement of Principles in Support of Undocumented Members of the UC Community
Posted: December 6, 2016

News Archive