The Duck of Minerva

The Duck Quacks at Twilight

Acting Chair

August 7, 2007

Since July 1, I’ve been “Acting Chair” in my academic Department — and I’m not in a Theater Department.

If I worked in sports, I’d probably be called the interim, chair.

A colleague who had served as department leader through nine years was tired of the job and announced last year that the faculty needed to find a successor.

The guy who stepped forward was due for a sabbatical — and leaves for a Fulbright in Hong Kong next week.

Thus, my service will run through June 30, 2008.


What does this mean?

Well, in practice it probably means that I’ll be making even fewer blog posts than usual — both here at the Duck and on my own blog.

I’ll be attending regular chair meetings, writing reports and letters of recommendation, reviewing merit and promotion files, meeting with faculty and staff, supervising the construction of the 2008-09 schedule, evaluating other employees, etc.

Next task: reading The College Administrator’s Survival Guide by
C. K. Gunsalus
, which the Dean’s office just distributed to all new chairs.

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Rodger A. Payne is a Professor of Political Science at the University of Louisville. He serves on the University’s Sustainability Council and was a co-founder of the Peace, Conflict, and Social Justice program. He is the author of dozens of journal articles and book chapters and coauthor, with Nayef Samhat, of Democratizing Global Politics: Discourse Norms, International Regimes, and Political Community (SUNY, 2004). He is currently working on two major projects, one exploring the role of narratives in international politics and the other examining the implications of America First foreign policy.