UO Professor Naomi Zack (Philosophy) is talking today at 12:00 at the ceremony in the Ford Alumni Center. She asked me to post this Eric Kelderman report on her thoughts about the award, in the Chronicle here:
… Ms. Zack said she was skeptical of some of the measures underway at the university because they rely too much on decisions at the department level, where people are too inclined to hire those like themselves. To prevent that, she said, the hiring process needs to be directed more from the administration.
“It’s human nature to hire people who are the students of your friends,” Ms. Zack said in an interview. That’s not necessarily racist, she said, but “the problem is that it works against excellence.”
“These hires need to be conducted by people who are required to look at the good of the institution as a whole,” she said. “We need something top-down here.”