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Inclusively Recognizing Faculty Innovation and Entrepreneurship Impact Within Promotion and Tenure Considerations

April 10, 2020

Authors: Jana Bouwma-Gearhart, Cindy Lenhart, Rich Carter, Karl Mundorff, Holly Cho, & Jessica Knoch

We explore the recognition of faculty members’ innovation and entrepreneurial impact within promotion and tenure considerations, across types of US institutions of higher education. We describe a rapidly developing coalition of institutions across the academic spectrum, seeking to affect meaningful additions to existing reward structures and processes, to inclusively recognize faculty impacts nationally. We discuss the intra- and inter-institutional challenges we believe need improving to achieve our goals. Informed by our own survey of 99 diverse US institutions, we describe the current terrain of faculty and institutional realities for change agents preparing for this work. We advance multiple conclusions to inform coalition strategy and to, overall, strengthen academia’s understanding of and rationale for inclusion of faculty innovation and entrepreneurship outputs within promotion and tenure considerations.

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