The University Record, April 26, 1999

Assembly Roundup

By Kerry Colligan

Discussion of the intellectual property policy

Marvin Krislov, vice president and general counsel, and Marvin Parnes, associate vice president for research and interim director, Technology Management Office, attended Senate Assembly's April 19 meeting to answer questions about the intellectual properties policy. They pointed out that the policy primarily deals with the distribution of revenue throughout the University, not with the faculty member's share of revenue.

Regents' Bylaw 3.10 grants ownership of intellectual property to the Regents and the intellectual properties policy is reviewed periodically to update the distribution of proceeds, Parnes said.

When the policy is updated, he explained, the "approach taken consistently is to not alter the faculty member's share of the proceeds, but how the University portion is distributed among different parts of the University." Recent updates to the policy have addressed concerns about conflict of interest and distribution of resources.

Parnes also cited a recent trend in implementing the policy. "We have accelerated taking equity, in lieu of royalties. If not the preferred method of doing business, it is certainly a much used strategy, particularly in start-ups formed around University technologies."

Report of the tenure committee

Tenure Committee chair Charles Garvin, professor of social work, urged Assembly members to comment on the document "Recommendations for Procedures to Attain Tenure."

Committee members, he said, quickly realized in the two-year process of forming the recommendations that there is "tremendous variability" in procedures across the University. The committee, Garvin said, is "not trying to standardize everything. That's not desirable. We tried to write in faculty participation and feedback to the candidate."

The committee is one of many on campus analyzing tenure procedures, Pamela Raymond, associate provost-academic and faculty affairs, told Assembly members. The Office of the Provost is working to compile the findings of the various committees and proceed in the most efficient manner, she added.

Copies of the recommendations are available in the Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs office, 6048 Fleming Building, 1340. Comments should be sent to tenure.committee@umich.edu.

Ensminger bids adieu

Outgoing chair William Ensminger, professor of pharmacology, commented on his tenure and the future direction of the Assembly.

"It's been a productive year," Ensminger said, highlighting the faculty grievance policy, the faculty handbook and the academic freedom lecture. "And, M-CARE steerage is either dead or in significant hibernation."

Ensminger said the accomplishments during his tenure "represent the dedicated efforts of so many people. We are fortunate to have the support of the administration." He also recognized the SACUA office staff: Tawna Dabney, academic secretary; Mary Mandeville, social science research associate; and Tom Schneider, executive assistant.

The coming year will provide many challenges for the Assembly, he added, with the tenure committee report and faculty compensation as key issues.