MIT Faculty Newsletter  
Vol. XIX No. 6
May / June 2007
Stating Our Core Values: Does MIT Need a Statement of Ethical Principles?
Bish Sanyal New Faculty Chair
Your Newsletter
MIT Communications:
Diversity, Vitality, and Openness
MIT Responds to the Tragedy
at Virginia Tech
Student Responses to Virginia Tech
and How Faculty Can Help
MIT Community Confronts Issues
of Safety and Grieving
An Interview with MIT Chief of Police
John DiFava
MIT and the World Economic Forum
MIT Administration Support
for the Faculty Newsletter
Two Statements from the Biological Engineering Faculty Regarding the
Tenure Case of Prof. James L. Sherley
Units, Schmunits: What Do You Care?
Looking Forward to Changes in the Undergraduate Commons:
Perspectives from a "Large" Program
Bordereline Jesus; The Diviners
Solving the Energy Problem
The Task Force on Medical Care for the MIT Community: An Update from MIT Medical
A New Cooperative Residence
for the MIT Community
Error Results in Some Faculty Being Overcharged for Supplemental Life Insurance
Newsletter Adopts New Policies and Procedures: Includes Direct Election of Editorial Board Members
From the Senior Survey
Women Faculty (as of October 2006)
Percent of Faculty Who are Women (as of October 2006)
Printable Version

Newsletter Adopts New Policies and Procedures: Includes Direct Election of Editorial Board Members

A significantly revised version of the Policies and Procedures for the MIT Faculty Newsletter was unanimously adopted at the April 19 Editorial Board meeting.

Key changes include: the creation of the position of Secretary for the Newsletter; a staggered three-year term for Board members; appointment of a Nominations Committee for potential new Board members; and the yearly direct election by the faculty of ~1/3 of the Editorial Board. These changes (and others) will be implemented in the coming academic year.

Following are the complete Policies and Procedures as adopted at the April 19 Board meeting.


Click here for a printable version of the FNL Policies and Procedures.

* * * * *

MIT Faculty Newsletter

Policies and Procedures


  1. Mission
  2. Function
  3. Governance
  4. Editorial Policy
  1. Mission
    The mission of the MIT Faculty Newsletter (FNL) is to serve as a medium for communication among MIT faculty, and as a voice for the diversity of faculty views within MIT as well as in the broader academic world.

II. Function
The Newsletter publishes articles, letters, editorials, and data deemed of interest to the faculty. Contributions are welcome from all members of the faculty and from emeritus faculty. Articles and letters represent the views of the author.

a. To carry out the above mission the FNL may publish articles deemed useful, from other sources, including members of the administration, students, research staff, and faculty at other universities.

b. Essential to the function of the FNL is its ability to express views that may not reflect those of other MIT constituencies and entities.

III. Governance
1) The MIT Faculty Newsletter shall be governed by an Editorial Board composed of members of the faculty:

a. The Editorial Board shall be composed of at least 12, but not more than 15, members of the faculty.

b. Editorial Board members shall serve for staggered three-year terms, with 1/3 of the members elected each year. Board members may be re-elected.

c. Faculty emeritus shall be eligible to serve.

d. Seven members shall constitute a quorum.

e. The Editorial Board shall meet not less than three times per year, fall, winter, and spring.

2) Nominations Committee:

a. The Editorial Board shall establish a Nominations Committee consisting of four members at the January/February meeting. Members shall serve for two years with staggered appointments for continuity. Two members will be elected in odd years and two in even years. The Editorial Board shall elect the Nominations Committee from among Board members. The nominees receiving the most votes among those nominated shall fill the open slots.

b. The Nominations Committee will have the responsibility of recruiting and evaluating candidates for the Editorial Board, taking into account the need for representation from different schools and sectors of the Institute, junior, senior, and retired faculty, male and female, underrepresented groups or faculty constituencies.

c. Candidates for the Editorial Board should give evidence of commitment to the integrity and independence of the faculty, and to the role of the Faculty Newsletter as an important voice of the faculty.

3) Election of the Editorial Board:

a. The Nominations Committee will present not fewer than four nor more than eight candidates to the faculty-at-large prior to the spring meeting of the Editorial Board. Nominees shall have the opportunity of circulating a short statement of their qualifications and/or views. The nominees corresponding to the number of open seats and receiving the most votes will be elected for three-year terms.

4) Officers of the Board:

a. The Board shall elect a Chair and a Secretary at its spring meeting for two-year terms. The Chair will be responsible for ensuring circulation of an agenda for Board meetings. The Secretary will be responsible for communicating minutes and financial reports when appropriate.

b. Among candidates nominated, the nominee receiving a majority of ballots shall be elected. In the case of more than two nominees, and no majority, the nominee receiving the fewest votes will be eliminated, and further ballot taken, until one individual has received a majority of the ballots cast. The Secretary shall be responsible for counting of ballots.

c. The Chair and Secretary will be elected in alternate years following the procedure described above.

d. Between Board meetings the Chair, Secretary, and Chair of the current Editorial Sub-Committee will constitute an Executive Committee to deal with matters arising, with serious issues communicated electronically to the Editorial Board for rapid comment.

5) The Editorial Board shall hire and direct the work of the Managing Editor. The Chair of the FNL Board shall serve as the formal Supervisor of the Managing Editor.

6) These Policies and Procedures can be amended by a 2/3 vote of the Editorial Board at any regular meeting of the Board. The proposed changes should be circulated not later than 7 days before the meeting.        

IV. Editorial Policies

1) The Editorial Board shall set or amend editorial policies at its regular meetings. Changes in editorial policies will be published in the Newsletter and posted on the Website.

2) For each issue of the Newsletter, an Editorial Sub-Committee shall be constituted consisting of at least three and preferably four members of the Editorial Board. These committees shall choose a chair for their duration. Each Editorial Sub-Committee will have responsibility for the content of the issue they are supervising, and for the Editorial if they choose to write one. On salient issues, the Editorial Sub-Committee may choose to poll the Board. Wherever possible, at least one member of an editorial Sub-Committee will also serve on the following Sub-Committee, to provide continuity.

3) In general the pages of the Faculty Newsletter are open to all members of the faculty. The publication of articles will be subject to the judgment of the Editorial Sub-Committee. Letters to the FNL will usually be published, provided they are relevant to the life of the campus, are not deemed libelous, do not report clearly erroneous information, and do not largely repeat opinions expressed in previous letters. Letters must be signed.

4) In general the views expressed in articles and letters represent the views of individuals and not those of the Editorial Board. Only the Editorial reflects the view of the Editorial Sub-Committee or Board.

5) The FNL will maintain a Website, the content of which will be set by the Editorial Board or Sub-Committee designated by the Editorial Board.

[This revision adopted at the meeting of the Editorial Board, April 19, 2007.]


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