The fall and rise of tenure-track

The New York Times recently published an interesting article on how the “Decline of the Tenure Track Raises Concerns“. In contrast to the general tone of past press coverage, this article speaks out in favor of tenure-track professors.

The shift from a tenured faculty results from financial pressures, administrators’ desire for more flexibility in hiring, firing and changing course offerings, and the growth of community colleges and regional public universities focused on teaching basics and preparing students for jobs.

It has become so extreme, however, that some universities are pulling back, concerned about the effect on educational quality. Rutgers University agreed in a labor settlement in August to add 100 tenure or tenure-track positions. Across the country, faculty unions are organizing part-timers. And the American Federation of Teachers is pushing legislation in 11 states to mandate that 75 percent of classes be taught by tenured or tenure-track teachers.

The pendulum is swinging back.

The article reports on some fascinating research as well.

Dr. Ehrenberg and a colleague analyzed 15 years of national data and found that graduation rates declined when public universities hired large numbers of contingent faculty.

Several studies of individual universities have determined that freshmen taught by many part-timers were more likely to drop out.

“Having an adjunct in a course is not necessarily bad for you, but having too many adjuncts might be,” said Eric P. Bettinger, an economics professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

This news article is focused on the United States academic market. Are campuses elsewhere in the world seeing similar trends?


Going to ICIS?

Anyone going to ICIS in Montreal? I will be there…

EGOS – CFP -Sub-theme 41: The Effects of Social Movements on Organizational Processes



CALL FOR PAPERS: EGOS 2008 (July 10-12, 2008)

Vrije University, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Sub-theme 41: The Effects of Social Movements on Organizational Processes

Call for papers

One of the central forms that ‘upsetting organizations’ take is of stakeholders who demand change from corporations. Curiously, one of the most understudied kinds of stakeholder groups in organization studies are social movements. Social movements, both historically and contemporaneously, target organizations for a variety of reasons, ranging from dissatisfaction with corporate performance, to annoyance at price increases, to perceived wrong-doings of the corporation (including negligence and corruption), to anger at specific organizational policies. They are in the business of ‘stirring up’ business organizations. From an organizational perspective, this type of interaction has mainly been dealt with through stakeholder theory; from a social science perspective the focus has been on social movement studies. These streams of research have largely developed independently of each other, but have recently started to attract interest among scholars from both perspectives (e.g. Davis et al., 2005), as also witnessed by recent special issues of the Academy of Management Review (July 2007) and Business & Society (forthcoming

Over the past several years, there has been growing attention to questions of how organizational scholars can bring social movement theory and tools to bear on questions of organizational-level processes such as those described above. At the same time, there has been resurgence in interest by social movement scholars about how fundamental organizational processes underlie the emergence of social movements and mediate their impact on society. We propose to convene scholars from both social movement and organization studies in order to continue the dialogue between social movement and organizational theories. Our ultimate goal is to produce an edited volume focusing on the effects of social movements, as key stakeholders, on organizations.

We seek to continue the dialogue between social movement and organizational studies by inviting papers that draw on both organizational and social movement theories that deal with the relationship between activist groups and corporations; we would prefer empirical papers but some theoretical contributions might also fit in. Suggested topics include (but are not limited to):

  • the consequences of heterogeneity and dissent within the network of activist groups (cf. radical flank effect; Haines 1984);
  • the choice of tactics (e.g., their sequential adoption, the relationship between collaboration and confrontation, and in relation to the issue of co-optation);
  • the use and outcomes of shareholder activism and its role in the repertoire of tactics;
  • the consequences of transnational social movement activity on the policies and practices of multinational enterprises, and the role of the state and public authorities therein;
  • how social movements are able to draw public and media attention to alleged corporate misconduct and fraud;
  • how social movements shape or create organizational fields, e.g., in areas such as food and (counter-)culture;
  • how ecological processes shown to affect for-profit organizations affect social movement organizations;
  • the development, role and influence of counter-movements [cf.];
  • the historical uniqueness of contemporary anti-corporate campaigns;
  • the ways firms organize internally for coping with stakeholder influence.

The above topics are intended as guidelines for potential submissions, not as limits. Papers from other angles, though linked to the overall theme, are also welcomed.

Please submit your abstracts (800 words) through the EGOS website by January 13, 2008. Guidelines for the submission of abstracts can be found at Should you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact any of the convenors.

This information can also be found at


Sarah A. Soule
Cornell University
, Ithaca (USA)

Frank den Hond
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (The Netherlands)

Frank G.A. de Bakker
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (The Netherlands)


Teaching with Web technology

From ISWORLD this week. This is an interesting list.

Subject: Re: Experiments with Facebook and LinkedIn – Progress report
From: “Larry Press” <lpress [at]>
Date: Sat, 3 Nov 2007 14:12:15 -0700
X-Message-Number: 3

Simha wrote:

> experiment to “to learn and share your knowledge about [Web 2.0] tools,
> and their role in higher education, as a networking tool for academics and
> to support teaching and other activities.”

I heartily agree that we are in the midst of a transition to the network
being a significant platform for development and applications — including
the teaching of IS.  I am currently teaching with and how to use network
services as follows:

Subscribe to a listserver (campus email system)
Create a realistic blog with custom page elements, RSS feeds, etc. (Blogger)
Create a mashup using a text to speech service (Talkr)
Create and use RSS feeds (Google Reader, Blogger)
Share images in a class project (Flickr)
Create a database application (Zoho creator)
Create composite and collaboratively written Wiki documents (PBWiki)
Create a survey (Survey Monkey)
Create a threaded discussion forum (Google Groups)
Create shared lists using social bookmarking (
Create a social network (Ning)
Create a project management application (Basecamp)
Create an online identity for an organization (Godaddy and Google Apps)
Conduct a conference call (Skype)
Edit online images (Fotoflexer), documents (Google Docs) and spreadsheets
(Google Spreadsheet)

I have many related teaching notes online, including these:

I am happy to share ideas, notes, assignments, etc. with others — how can
we use LinkedIn or Facebook to do so?  What other tools can we use to
collaborate?  For example, might teaching notes like the ones I just
mentioned be put on a wiki?