9/9/2013 update #2: The take from the administration’s bargaining update pages?
Article 52: Outside Activities
We presented the Union with a counterproposal on Outside Activities (consulting). The parties did not engage in any substantive discussion about it.
Gottfredson is not content with just paying us wages at the bottom of the AAU. His new consulting policy proposal will require that *any* consulting activity, even below 1 day in 7, must first be approved by his Provost or designee.
9.5 minutes to go. Rudnick is wasted. Cecil just keeps on going. “Let’s go back to the consulting article.”
Olson: Will this apply to non-BU faculty?
Rudnick: “My understanding is that, as a general rule, the intent is *all* policies will apply to all employees.”
Also see the administration’s “fact-check” page, which notes that their proposed policy resembles that at UW. I’d link to them, but they don’t link to me, so try google.
What do the transcripts taken down by the university’s stenographer say? President Gottfredson will not release these transcripts, claiming attorney-client privilege. I have a public records petition in to Lane County DA Alex Gardner, arguing that transcripts of a public meeting taken by a university employed non-attorney are not privileged, and that even they are UO has waived that privilege by posting information from those transcripts on the web and circulating them to their laborrelations email list.
His decision is due Thursday. If it goes against me, I will ask the Senate to ask Gottfredson to waive UO’s privilege and release all UO’s transcripts of the public bargaining sessions.
9/9/2013 update: Gottfredson and Geller’s process for this consulting proposal appears to violate the UO Constitution, or at least common practices of collegiality. The working group report from 2010 is at the bottom of this post. Some highlights:
“…required reporting from all faculty members is neither appropriate nor necessary.”
“…activities performed on personal time are exempt from regulation unless they pose potential conflicts of interest or conflict with the proper discharge of University responsibilities. (See: UO PP 3.095 and IMD 4.015).”
9/8/2013 update: See bottom of the post for the UC policy – a striking comparison with what Gottfredson is proposing.
9/7/2013: I will try and avoid hyperbole here, but this is rather amazing.
At the bargaining session on Friday the UO administration presented a new contract article: Article 52, Outside Activities. At this point in the negotiations, which are nearing conclusion, it is unusual to drop a bombshell. This is one.
This proposal requires faculty wanting to engage in outside consulting work to first obtain permission from the university. If you are a law professor or PI, you may be thinking that this proposal will not apply to you, because you are not in the union. However it would be difficult for the university to have 2 sets of rules for this sort of thing, and during the discussion the university’s negotiator, Sharon Rudnick volunteered that:
“My understanding is that, as a general rule, the intent is that *all* policies will apply to all employees.”
This proposal defines consulting broadly, and it spells out many criteria that must be followed before permission will be granted.
Some of these criteria are quite specific, and contrary to common practice. For example, when combined with the administration’s Intellectual Property proposal, it would seem that proposals to do consulting work will only be approved if the agreement makes clear that the work product of your consulting may belong to UO – see 3.h. (This refers to UO’s Intellectual Property proposal. You can download this from UO’s bargaining website, here. It raises a host of problems on its own.) When it comes to Intellectual Property, may also want to speak to a law firm similar to Sidley Austin that specializes in such cases.
Other criteria for approval are unbelievably broad, such as 3.k:
“The consulting is not contrary to the University’s best interests”
Gosh, who gets to decide that one?
These new rules, if implemented, will make it close to impossible for faculty in music, law, business, economics, education, psychology, physics, nano-science, chemistry, human physiology, etc. to engage in most consulting work. If you are in this category, I encourage you to contact your department head and/or dean and explain the problems with this administration proposal, and ask them to contact President Gottfredson and his lead negotiator, UO General Counsel Randy Geller, at firstname.lastname@example.org, to make those concerns known. Here is the text of the proposal:
k. The consulting is not contrary to the University’s best interests.
Update from 9/8/2013:
A reader sends this link to the University of California policy on outside work and Intellectual Property. UC encourages faculty to do consulting for 1 day in 7. No prior approval is required:
The University of California encourages faculty to participate in outside professional activities that contribute to their profession and to the broader community and contribute to the University’s public service mission. Engagement with the outside community is also an important component of the academic enterprise and one way in which faculty and other researchers maintain contact with research directions and priorities that exist in the private sector. This knowledge also guides faculty in preparing students for careers in the private sector.
When it comes to IP, UC wants to know about their faculty’s patentable inventions so they can negotiate a split of the royalties:
The University must be able to meet its obligations assumed under legal contractual obligations with regard to intellectual property rights. Such rights may be generated by faculty and other researchers as a result of sponsored research agreements, material transfer agreements, and other research support agreements entered into on behalf of those faculty and research staff. Therefore, all inventions made by a University employee must be disclosed to the University, including inventions made on weekends, on leave, at home “in the garage,” or during paid or unpaid consulting work. Disclosure is a legal obligation of employment at the University.
Employees must assign inventions when certain conditions exist
The process of determining the University’s rights in any potentially patentable invention made by a University employee is initiated with the disclosure of an invention, typically on a Record of Invention form. The University may assert its right to an invention based on three primary criteria:
1) the use of University funds or facilities in conceiving and/or developing the invention;
2) potential obligations to third parties; and
3) intellectual property rights and obligations that arise from the faculty/researcher’s scope of University employment.
The determination regarding the use of University funds or facilities and third party obligations is typically managed by the campus/Laboratory authorized licensing, contracts and grants, or comparable administrative office. For University faculty and researchers, the question of an employee’s scope of employment is initially an academic issue best addressed by the appropriate University academic manager – most often the department chair or dean – with guidance from the Office of General Counsel as necessary.
UC does not purport to claim they own your class notes and writings or whatever is on your computer, or everything you do as a scholar, by default. But that is exactly what Gottfredson is letting Geller try to do in UO’s Article 51:
Section 10. Reservation of Rights. The University is hereby granted the right to an irrevocable, non-exclusive, world-wide, royalty-free license for the use of inventions, technological improvements, works of authorship, and other Intellectual Property not owned by the University but related to a bargaining unit faculty member’s fields of professional competence, unless a written document assigning that right has been executed by an authorized University official.
But even that is not enough for UO. In article 49, they assert they own everything you store on a UO computer or network.
9/9/2013 update: Gottfredson and Geller’s process for this consulting proposal appears to violate the UO Constitution, or at least common practice of collegiality: