Scroll back to the top

Current Research Projects


What Drives promotion and tenure outcomes

Promotion and tenure processes in higher education are critical to the integrity of America's science enterprise. They determine which faculty members continue their careers and whose career aspirations come to a screeching halt by a tenure denial. At the core of the system is the notion that the most talented and deserving candidates get promoted. This project challenges that basic assumption by shedding new light on what drives promotion and tenure outcomes in academic environments.  Women and underrepresented minorities are disproportionately less likely to be tenured and promoted. The ultimate goal of this project is to uncover ways to minimize bias and increase representation of faculty from diverse backgrounds by creating training programs.  This project will inform the STRIPE workshops that are now underway at Texas A&M.

Texas A&M is one of nine partner instituions. The other institutions are Hampton University, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, University of Alabama, Louisiana State University, Lehigh University, Worcester Polytechnic Institute and Rice University.

This project is funded by a $2 million dollar grant from the National Science Foundation and a $177,000 grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The PI for the project is Christiane Spitzmuller at the University of Houston.  Dr. Cynthia Werner is the Site PI for Texas A&M University.

Climate and Faculty Retention Project

Recruiting faculty from underrepresented groups is the first step.  Retaining them is equally important. This research project looks at the role that departments, colleges and the university as a whole play in the retention of faculty from underrepresented groups (especially women and faculty of color). The study will start by looking at retention data to see whether faculty from underrepresented groups are leaving Texas A&M at disproportionate rates compared to other faculty.  Then, the study will use a variety of approaches to look at how individual faculty experiences vary, and the extent to which climate influnces decisions to stay (or leave).


Impact of STRIDE Workshops on Faculty Hiring Outcomes

STRIDE workshops are designed to provide participants with strategies to maximize the likelihood that well-qualified candidates from underrepresented groups will be identified and recruited for faculty positions at Texas A&M University.  The purpose of this study is to look at the extent to which the recommendations from the workshops are employed in individual faculty searches, and to see how the outcomes vary based on the extent to which recommendations are applied.