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Candidate to the University Board 2019

Presentation of Eirik Hovden

My main motivation for being a candidate for the University Board is to work in order to safeguard the university democracy, the independence and the special role of the university in society. I will vote for keeping an elected leadership.

Basic research and teaching are the core activities of the university and we must ensure that they remain independent of market forces and political interests. We should limit new public management-thinking.

By and large I want to follow the program of Sofie Marhaug (the present group B representative). I will use the network of group B-representatives at different levels and regularly invite all who want to meet in order to discuss current cases before university board meetings.

Special issues for group B I wish to work for:

We need longer contracts for temporary staff. A possible model is six-year tenure track positions. Much of the growth will come as external funding. Here the short contracts offered is a major problem for group B.

Better choices of courses for group B in fields of university pedagogics (uniped), research project development, project management, budgeting, project reporting, communication. Potential teaching experience is important for many in group-B and should be included in individual qualification plans, especially for post docs.

More help to point out diverging different career paths, as early as possible, between and academic career and careers outside of academia.

More support for those who wish to apply for external funding. Group B have often less experience and needs such aid most.

Protest against group B often being the first to be given "activity based workplace" (no office).

The university should consider creating an internal structure for managing externally funded projects that have a clear basic research character. A buffer can be taken from the overhead costs in order to create fixed researcher positions, or at least, with longer contracts than today.

Generally at university level:

More openness and democracy at the university.

Ensure an especially free position for the core activities of the university, such as research, critical thinking, education and support critical argumentation internally and outwards. The university must remain independent of the market and political interests. This is the role of the university and it has to do with its credibility.

UiB have to become clearer in its communication towards politicians when it comes to the conditions related to the governmental funding to UiB.

Work for less new public management in areas where economic profit can never be achieved in the first place. Counteract competition on artificial terms. Priorities have to be done by leadership kept responsible over time.

Be clearer about UiB's intension of owning other applied/externally funded research institutes.

Be clearer about UiB's intension of ownership of properties and endowments. Ensure an ethical and environmental management of these.

Reverse trends of outsourcing of services.

The university should take a more active role in communicate to the public and the web pages should be easier to actively use for both staff and others.

Stronger profile of environment, sustainability and global justice.

About myself:

I have worked as a temporary employed at UiB more or less since my MA degree in 2006, except for four years at OeAW in Vienna. I have therefore much experience from different group B positions. In 2018 I started as a post doc at Arabic, Department of Foreign Languages, Faculty of Humanities. I have been part of Stip-HF and is now a deputy representative for group B in the faculty board at HF. I have a son and will be in paternity leave this summer.