Recruitment, Retention and Retirement in Higher Education Building and Managing the Faculty of the Future
Building and Managing the Faculty of the Future
Edited by Robert L. Clark and Jennifer Ma
Chapter 10: Faculty retirement incentives by colleges and universities
10. Faculty retirement incentives by colleges and universities John Pencavel 10.1 INTRODUCTION The ending of mandatory retirement has given tenured faculty a new job privilege.1 Except for faculty dismissed for cause, a tenured faculty member’s decision to leave a university or college is now entirely at the discretion of the faculty member. At one time, the implicit contract between a university and a professor involved tenure for a certain number of years followed by its termination at a speciﬁed age. The professor was protected from job dismissal for his views, but in return the institution was permitted unilaterally to sever its association with him at a particular age. With the end of mandatory retirement, this university-initiated severance has been ended. Yet academic tenure was not intended to provide a guarantee of lifetime employment. In 1940, the American Association of University Professors provided a classic statement about academic freedom and tenure:2 Institutions of higher education are conducted for the common good and not to further the interest of either the individual teacher or the institution as a whole. The common good depends upon the free search for truth and its free exposition. Academic freedom is essential to these purposes and applies to both teaching and research . . . Tenure is a means to certain ends; speciﬁcally: (1) freedom of teaching and research and of extramural activities, and (2) a suﬃcient degree of economic security to make the profession attractive to men and women of ability. Freedom and economic security,...
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