ERIC Number: ED409949
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Jun
Reference Count: N/A
Has Collective Bargaining Damaged Shared Governance?
At Union County College, in New Jersey, faculty collective bargaining was established in 1975, in response to a sense among faculty that they were no longer adequately involved in decision making at the college. While the first few negotiations went smoothly, in 1979 and 1980 faculty went on strike over the administration's decision to increase class sizes. Although since then the relationship between faculty and administration appears cordial on the surface, there has been some deterioration. Recently, the administration has begun applying its own unique interpretation to contract provisions that had previously been ignored and has been more willing to settle disputes through outside arbitrators, rather than through informal negotiations. The collective bargaining process seems to have intensified the division between faculty and administration, affecting the climate of shared governance. Although some researchers have claimed that the process actually helps achieve the goal of shared governance, collective bargaining by its very nature and its roots in the industrial world creates antagonism and results in written, stated duties and limitations for both parties. Although faculty focus can be narrowed by unions and agreements, ultimately what is important is that faculty and administrators share a willingness to cooperate and compromise in a productive rather than an adversarial manner. (BCY)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Princeton Univ., NJ. Mid-Career Fellowship Program.