CAA News Today
Govenor proposes closure of the Illnois State Museum
posted by CAA — June 16, 2015
Allison J. Cywin of the Visual Resource Center at the University of Massachusetts in Dartmouth sent the following email on June 15, 2015.
Govenor proposes closure of the Illnois State Museum
I thought I would share the following concern. The Govenor of Illnois wants to closed the state museum. http://northernpublicradio.org/post/rauner-moves-forward-state-facility-closure-plans Please express your concerns and sign the petition (http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/governor-rauner-dont.fb48?source=s.icn.fb&r_by=5646051)
to support the museum.
and spread the news.
American Historical Society Statement on the University of Wisconsin
posted by CAA — June 10, 2015
The American Historical Society prepared the statement below regarding the Wisconsin legislature’s actions to, in effect, eliminate tenure at the University of Wisconsin. The CAA Executive Committee has approved endorsing this statement. Since this statement was crafted two days ago, U of W Faculty Senate voted to reject the proposal in order to maintain control over the university budget and the tenure system.
American Historical Society Statement on the University of Wisconsin
The American system of higher education is the envy of the world. It’s not perfect; few things are. But at a time when many Americans fear their nation may be falling behind competitively, U.S. colleges and universities continue to be universally regarded as the best in the world. The University of Wisconsin system, in particular, is noted for its standards of research and teaching excellence, with the Madison campus recognized among the top fifteen of American public universities by U.S. News and World Report. The University of Wisconsin is a critical contributor to the state’s economy that provides exceptional value with its thirteen campuses serving over 180,000 students. With $1.2 billion of state investment, the system generates over $15 billion of economic activity.
The undersigned associations of scholars across a wide variety of disciplines are gravely concerned with proposals pending in the Wisconsin legislature that threaten to undermine several longstanding features of the state’s current higher education system: shared governance, tenure, and academic freedom.
By situating the locus of control inside the institution, in a partnership between faculty and administrators, the U.S. system of higher education has generated an unmatched diversity that enables students to find the educational environment that works best for them. And by granting faculty tenure after an appropriate period during which their work is rigorously evaluated, we have ensured the continued intellectual vitality and classroom independence so essential to innovation, dynamism, and rigorous scholarship.
Academic freedom is the foundation of intellectual discovery, including in the classroom. It nourishes the environment within which students develop critical habits of mind through encounters with diverse perspectives, experiences, and sources of evidence across disciplines. Our democracy depends on the educated citizens that this system is intended to produce: wide-ranging in their knowledge, rigorous in their ability to understand complicated questions, and dedicated to the public good.
Wisconsin in fact helped pioneer the concept of academic freedom for the entire United States when its Board of Regents declared in 1894 that they would not terminate the employment of economist Richard Ely even though his research and teaching on the benefits of labor unions had offended one of its own members. The Regents’ report in the wake of that controversy remains one of the most ringing endorsements for academic freedom in the history of American higher education: “Whatever may be the limitations which trammel inquiry elsewhere,” they wrote, “we believe the great state University of Wisconsin should ever encourage that continual and fearless sifting and winnowing by which alone the truth can be found.”
The policies recommended by the Joint Finance Committee and included in the 2016 budget pose a direct threat to academic freedom by expanding the circumstances under which tenure can be revoked (beyond dire financial emergencies and just cause) while simultaneously removing its protection under state statute. Tenure is a linchpin of vigorous shared governance and independent rigorous scholarship. This assault on the structure of Wisconsin’s model arrangements poses a threat to the university’s stellar reputation and international leadership in research and education—and it betrays a celebrated Wisconsin tradition that began with the Ely case in 1894.
Since 1904, the “Wisconsin Idea” has stood as an inspiring educational model for the entire nation, demonstrating the immeasurable benefits of a robust partnership between the state university and state government predicated on intellectual independence and active engagement by students and faculty members with the wider world. An earlier draft of the current budget bill sought to remove language about the Wisconsin Idea from the mission statement of the university. This most recent draft now poses no less a threat by undermining several of the most important practical pillars of shared governance and academic freedom that have made Wisconsin a beacon among its peer institutions around the world.
Rather than making the University of Wisconsin system more fiscally nimble, the Joint Finance Committee recommendations threaten to damage, possibly irreparably, the distinguished educational system that has justifiably been the pride of Wisconsin residents for more than a century and a half.
Join CAA in Supporting Part-Time Faculty
posted by Linda Downs — February 20, 2015
On the occasion of the National Adjunct Walkout Day planned for February 25th CAA asks visual arts tenured faculty and faculty administrators to review, discuss with your colleagues, and implement the CAA Guidelines for Part-Time Professional Employment. These guidelines provide the consensus on best practices in the visual arts in hiring, contracting, providing resources, working space, information, professional development, equitable salaries, and opportunities to participate in institutional government. We particularly encourage full-time tenured faculty and administrators to revisit these guidelines and discuss them toward full implementation at your institution.
The CAA Strategic Plan, 2015–2020 has placed part-time faculty issues as a priority. At the February 15th Board of Directors meeting, a task force on advocacy has been formed to address part-time faculty issues along with diversity in the field, and the public face of art and art history. As part of this effort, we will be surveying visual-arts departments to determine where we stand on these issues and how best to move forward.
DeWitt Godfrey, CAA President
Professor of Art and Art History
Executive Director and CEO
Soliciting Sign-On for DMCA § 1201 Rulemaking
posted by Linda Downs — November 25, 2014
CAA has signed on to this Petition to the US Copyright Office for Proposed Exemption Under 17 U.S.C. 1201 to the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) for the use of audiovisual media by college and university students or faculty in an educational setting. The DMCA prevents users from unlocking digital media or software. Congress has allowed review of the DMCA every three years to determine whether the law is affecting legitimate use of audiovisual material. In compliance to this three-year review the US Copyright Office has requested that examples be gathered of evidence where students or faculty were stopped from including a video clip in their teaching materials because of no access to decryption codes.
Student lawyers at American University are working on gathering examples and would appreciate hearing from those CAA members who have attempted to use audiovisual material from DVDs or off the web and were prevented from doing so. Please refer to the Google Form created to gather evidence and provide an easy forum for individuals to share their stories. This information will then be sent to the US Copyright Office to demonstrate the need for an exemption for students and faculty use of locked audiovisual materials. Deadline: December 30, 2014.
We would also like to share a piece for Forbes, written by Peter Decherney, which is an interesting read about some of the technology policy issues raised by the DMCA rulemaking.
Thank you for participating in this important petition.
Overview of Findings from the 2012–13 Humanities Departmental Survey
posted by Christopher Howard — September 10, 2014
Humanities Indicators, a project of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, has released the findings from its 2012–13 Humanities Departmental Survey. The report says:
Despite considerable discussion in the media about the impact of the recent recession on academia in general and the humanities in particular, the results from the Humanities Departmental Survey (HDS-2) suggest considerable continuity between the 2007–08 and 2012–13 academic years—bearing in mind that we are only seeing snapshots from two moments in time. Among the degree-granting departments surveyed for both HDS-1 and HDS-2 (in art history, English, languages and literatures other than English, history, history of science, linguistics, combined languages and literatures programs, and religion at four-year institutions) the number of existing departments and faculty appeared relatively unchanged, though the number of students majoring in the humanities slipped.
You can read an overview of the report, as well as breakdowns on individual disciplines—including art history—on the Humanities Indicators website.
Survey of Faculty Who Teach Online
posted by Christopher Howard — November 14, 2012
The Coalition on Contingent Academic Labor (COCAL X) and the United Association for Labor Education (UALE) seek participation in the On Line Teaching Working Conditions Survey from all faculty members who teach online for the purpose of gaining information on wages and working conditions. The organizers hope that the results will lead to organizing for improvements. CAA encourages you to take the survey and to forward its link to any relevant lists or individuals.
The survey is for anyone teaching online in colleges or universities. The project committee aims to collect a range of working conditions: how much people get paid, how many hours they work, whether they have union representation, how many students they have in a class, and so on. When the committee collects enough responses to get a sense of what’s out there, it will categorize the examples as “good,” “bad,” and “ugly” in an attempt to establish some kind of standard of what decent working conditions for online teachers—who are suspected to be largely contingent—might look like.
If you do not want to give your name when completing the survey, simply type in random letters in the box for the first question. No names of individuals will appear in the final (or draft) report, and no raw data will be circulated outside the committee that is working on the project. However, the group does need the name of your institution, the one through which you are teaching the class with the working conditions that you are describing.
Please complete this survey even if you filled out the previous draft survey. The current one has been updated to reflect comments that the organizers received from those who took the previous survey.
For more information on the survey or the project, please contact Helena Worthen for COCAL X and UALE’s On-Line Teaching Working Group.
AAU Proposes Higher Education, Innovation Agenda for Presidential Candidates, Next Administration
posted by Linda Downs — October 01, 2012
The CAA Board of Directors has endorsed a policy paper, released on September 19, 2012, which calls for increased funding for the arts and humanities, among other subjects.
Calls for Strengthening Partnership between Federal Government and Research Universities
The Association of American Universities (AAU) today proposed for the next Administration a detailed agenda for strengthening the partnership between the federal government and the nation’s research universities as a means of fostering innovation, prosperity, and economic growth.
The paper also lists steps that universities need to take to strengthen the partnership and improve the ways they carry out their missions of education, research, and public service.
AAU will provide the policy paper, entitled “Partnering for a Prosperous and Secure Future: The Federal Government and Research Universities,” to both major Presidential campaigns.
For some of its key proposals, the paper relies on the recent National Research Council (NRC) report, “Research Universities and the Future of America: Ten Breakthrough Actions Vital to Our Nation’s Prosperity and Security.” AAU is an association of leading public and private research universities that focuses on national and institutional issues important to research-intensive universities, including funding for research, research and education policy, and graduate and undergraduate education.
The policy paper issued today provides recommendations for government and for universities in the following areas:
Addressing the nation’s fiscal challenge. The report calls for “a balanced approach that seriously and thoughtfully addresses entitlement programs, which are a primary source of long-term spending growth, and incorporates substantial tax reform that is designed both to encourage economic growth and to raise revenues needed to reduce the deficit.”
Cultivating human capital by strengthening access to college. The report calls on the federal government to sustain vital student aid programs, especially Pell Grants, and ensure that student loan programs encourage sound borrowing and manageable repayment plans. It also emphasizes the importance of universities controlling costs while sustaining educational quality, providing appropriate institutional financial aid, and ensuring transparency about costs as well as financial aid.
Attracting and developing talent by strengthening graduate and STEM education and reforming immigration laws. To strengthen graduate education, the report calls on universities to become more efficient by increasing completion rates and reducing time-to-degree and to strengthen pathways for students in a broad range of careers, not only in academia. It calls on government to adopt career development initiatives designed to supplement and expand fellowships and traineeships.
The report notes AAU’s five-year initiative to strengthen undergraduate education in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines and urges government to encourage such initiatives.
The paper also calls for comprehensive immigration reform as well as specific reforms designed to “turn immigrant talent into American talent,” including establishing a clear pathway to citizenship for advanced STEM degree graduates from US colleges and universities; enacting a version of the DREAM Act to help make it possible for children whose parents brought them to the US to attend college; and gradually replacing the seven-percent-per-country cap limitation for employment-based green cards with a first-come, first-serve system for qualified, highly skilled immigrants.
Fostering new ideas and discoveries. The report urges the next Administration to follow through on the NRC’s recommendations for sustaining federal support of basic research, including full funding of the America COMPETES Act. It also expresses support for allocating research funds by merit review as well as for sustained funding of the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Ensuring a regulatory and legal framework that encourages innovation. The association calls for regulatory reform to simplify and make more efficient the regulatory framework governing federal research and higher education programs. It also urges maintaining the current legal framework for university technology transfer, as set forth by the Bayh-Dole Act; developing proof-of-concept and gap funding programs that would support the translation of ideas generated with federally funded research into viable commercial products; and rejecting proposals that would allow faculty to be “free agents” and directly commercialize federal research results. To further promote innovation, AAU calls for legislation to encourage federal research agencies to build and interconnect public-access repositories of peer-reviewed articles developed from the research they fund. The association also advocates policies that support expanding public access to both domestic and international research repositories.
Encouraging other sources of support for research universities. The policy document calls for federal initiatives to encourage states to live up to their obligation to support public higher education, including federal-state matches that require maintenance of effort by states. The report also calls for extending and improving tax policies that aid students and families in financing higher education, particularly permanent extension of the American Opportunity Tax Credit and its consolidation with the Lifetime Learning Tax Credit and the deduction for undergraduate education. The report also calls for the preservation of strong tax incentives for charitable giving.
The Association of American Universities is an association of sixty-one leading public and private research universities in the United States and Canada. AAU focuses on issues important to research-intensive universities, such as funding for research, research policy issues, and graduate and undergraduate education. AAU universities award over one-half of all US doctoral degrees and 55 percent of those in the sciences and engineering. They are on the leading edge of innovation, scholarship, and solutions that contribute to our nation’s economy, security, and well-being.
CAA’s Response to the Closing of the Visual Arts Department at Emory University
posted by Christopher Howard — September 29, 2012
As a 14,000 member professional organization which promotes excellence in scholarship, teaching, and the practice of art history, criticism and studio art, CAA regrets Emory University’s decision to close its department of Visual Arts and re-locate the tenured Visual Arts faculty members in other departments.
However, Emory’s administration has done so with the input of appointees from the College of Arts and Sciences’ Faculty Governance Committee, and as part of a responsible and careful look at its entire academic offerings. CAA understands that the university has decided to close the departments of Visual Arts, Educational Studies and Physical Education, and the program in Journalism in order to put its resources into building upon its strengths, as part of a long-term plan developed over several more than four years.
Emory University has an accredited art history department that offers ancient through contemporary art history and archeology courses through a doctoral level. CAA looks forward to hearing more about the developments at Emory and how visual arts education will be addressed in the future.
Survey Results on Contingent Faculty in Higher Education
posted by Christopher Howard — June 20, 2012
The results of a 2010 survey of contingent faculty members and instructors in American higher education, published today by the Coalition on the Academic Workforce (CAW), have confirmed much of what has been reported anecdotally: part-time faculty members demonstrate a dedicated level of commitment to teaching and to the institutions that employ them, but this commitment is not reciprocated by those institutions through compensation or other professional support. The findings also describe larger course loads for teachers, imbalances in compensation in relation to not only professional credentials but also gender and race, and minimal participation in academic decision-making. Further, contingent faculty face longer durations of provisional employment and slim prospects for career advancement, with schools failing to meet their preference for full-time status.
According to a 2009 government study, 75.5 percent of all faculty members at colleges and universities in the United States are contingent: that is, they hold part-time or adjunct positions, have full-time non-tenure-track jobs, or serve as graduate-student teaching assistants. Part-timers alone make up nearly half the total professoriate. The US Department of Education, however, has not kept statistics on contingent-faculty salaries since 2003, when it last carried out its National Study of Postsecondary Faculty. CAW’s comprehensive survey, administered in fall 2010, was conducted in an effort to provide meaningful data for this rapidly growing concern. Of the nearly 30,000 survey respondents, 1,102 were CAA members: 591 in studio art and design, 362 in art history, and 149 in art education. The CAW report focuses on the largest group of contingent faculty: part-timers.
CAA is a founding member (1997) of CAW, which is a group of higher-education associations, disciplinary associations, and faculty organizations committed to addressing issues associated with deteriorating faculty working conditions and their effect on college and university students in the United States. Specifically, CAW’s purpose is to: collect and disseminate information on the use and treatment of full- and part-time faculty members serving off the tenure track and the implications for students, parents, other faculty members, and institutions; articulate and clarify differences in the extent and consequences of changes in the faculty within and among the various academic disciplines and fields of study; evaluate the short-term and long-term consequences of changes in the academic workforce for society and the public good; identify and promote strategies for solving the problems created by inappropriate use and exploitation of part-time, adjunct, and similar faculty appointments; promote conditions by which all faculty members, including full- and part-time non-tenure-track faculty members, can strengthen their teaching and scholarship, better serve their students, and advance their professional careers.
Andrew Delbanco, the author of College: What It Was, Is, and Should Be (2012), stated that, in 1975, 60 percent of college professors were full-time faculty with tenure. The reasons for the accelerated shift toward contingent labor since that time are many. Decreases in state funding, capital expansion without commensurate revenue, increases in specialized knowledge requiring thousands of course offerings, and swelling student enrollment all have had a detrimental effect on faculty budgets, more so than on any other area of expenditures in higher education. Jane Wellman, who led the Delta Project on Postsecondary Education Costs, Productivity, and Accountability, affirmed these observations in a recent New York Times interview:
What the evidence shows is that we’ve done more to cut costs in the faculty area than elsewhere in the budget, and we’ve done it by bringing in more adjuncts and part-timers. So there’s a handful of professors with tenure, who don’t teach very much, and then there’s [a] lot of people who have no benefits who do more of the teaching. I think it’s probably hurting academic quality, especially at institutions where the students are not well prepared. The attrition [of students] is mostly in the first two years, and that’s mostly where the adjuncts are.
While no hard evidence has determined that an increase of adjuncts has diminished the quality of teaching in higher education, the CAW survey results clearly demonstrate pressure on part-time faculty due to not only expanding workloads and larger classes—especially for part-time faculty teaching at multiple institutions—but also expectations to be involved in academic decision-making without additional compensation.
Professors of studio art and art history are acutely aware of all these issues. Enrollment has risen persistently for art-history and studio courses for years, while tenured positions have diminished. The survey results do bring some slightly positive news: median pay for contingent faculty in studio art and design and in art history is $3,000 per three-credit course (the nationwide median is approximately $2,700). In addition, workers at campuses with a union presence earn more than those at nonunion schools. Compensation is lower, however, for survey respondents who identified themselves as black, although the number of African Americans who participated in the survey was low. Please visit the CAW website for details on these issues and more.
The CAW report will provide important data for discussions taking place in several of CAA’s Professional Interests, Practices, and Standards Committees. The Student and Emerging Professionals Committee will be addressing contingent-faculty issues at a panel at the 2013 Annual Conference in New York, which will include Michael Bérubé, president of the Modern Language Association and director of the Institute for the Arts and Humanities at Pennsylvania State University, who will present an overview of the Academic Workforce Data Center, a compilation of historical data of the growth of contingent faculty by universities. Bérubé will also discuss the need to nationalize the academic-job market. Jeanne Brody, an adjunct professor at Villanova University and Saint Joseph’s University, will summarize the ways in which adjunct faculty members are effectively organizing and advocating better treatment within the university system. Victoria H. F. Scott of Emory University will discuss the establishment of an Art History Society of the Americas, which would explore abolishing adjunct position types, raising salaries, collecting statistics, and setting policies to improve and monitor working conditions.
The Committee on Women in the Arts, which focuses on women’s issues in the workplace and beyond, will respond to survey results on gender. Although women make up two-thirds of all CAA members, they tend to occupy the lowest rungs of academia, while men continue filling the higher-ranking and higher-paid positions. To continue the discussion, the committee will present a panel at the 2013 conference, chaired by the artist and professor Claudia Sbrissa, on how the “feminization” of art history may have contributed to lower salaries and prestige for women.
Similarly, the Committee on Diversity Practices will discuss issues related to retention of faculty members of color during its panel at the 2013 conference.
CAA would like to thank the individuals who generously volunteered their time and expertise to develop and tabulate CAW’s survey: John Curtis, director of research and public policy, American Association of University Professors; David Laurence, director of research, Modern Language Association; Kathleen Terry-Sharp, director of academic relations and practicing and applied programs, American Anthropological Society; Craig Smith, director of higher education, American Federation of Teachers; and Robert B. Townsend, deputy director, American Historical Association.
Recent CAA Advocacy
posted by Christopher Howard — June 18, 2012
CAA’s advocacy efforts this year addressed a wide range of issues of critical importance to the visual arts, from the necessity of artists to have affordable health-insurance options, to the ethical treatment of animals in works of art, to the ins and outs of copyright law and museum practices. Below is a summary of eleven issues to which CAA has been committed during the past twelve months.
In June 2011, CAA filed an amicus brief in the case of Golan v. Holder, which the United States Supreme Court began hearing in October. The issue raised in Golan v. Holder is whether Congress, after enacting the Uruguay Round Agreements Act of 1994, could legally remove tens of thousands—if not millions—of foreign works from the public domain and bring them back into copyright. Consistent with the First Amendment, the brief argued that those works should remain freely available. On January 18, 2012, the Supreme Court affirmed a lower court’s previous decision, 6–2. In short, foreign works formerly in the public domain in the US can have their copyrighted status reinstated.
In December 2011, CAA signed onto a statement from the Association of Art Museum Directors that opposed the pending sale of a fifty percent stake in the Alfred Stieglitz Collection of Modern American and European Art at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. Since 2005 the school had been attempting to sell the collection, donated by Georgia O’Keeffe (who specified that it never be sold or broken up). “Such an action,” stated the letter, “would violate a core professional standard of AAMD and of the museum field, which prohibit[s] the use of funds from the sale of works of art for purposes other than building an institution’s collection.” Nevertheless, the Tennessee Supreme court did not block the sale to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas, on April 25, 2012. The university and museum will share the collection on a three-year rotating basis, with the museum helping to conserve the collection.
CAA board and staff members represented the organization at two events this spring in Washington, DC: Anne Collins Goodyear, then-incoming board president, and Linda Downs, CAA executive director and chief executive officer, attended Humanities Advocacy Day in March; and Judith Thorpe, an outgoing board member, and Helen Bayer, CAA marketing and communications associate, went to Arts Advocacy Day in April. The goal of both days was to support continued federal funding through the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts, and to articulate to Congress the vital importance of the humanities and the arts in higher education. The National Humanities Alliance’s annual meeting coincided with Humanities Advocacy Day. Goodyear and Downs have offered a summary of this important event.
At the request of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), CAA investigated the use of homing pigeons in Jon Rubin’s interactive artwork, Thinking about Flying (2012), on view this year at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver, Colorado. The piece invites museum visitors to take home a bird, placed in a cardboard box, for a day before releasing it, so that it may fly back to the museum. CAA confirmed the humanitarian treatment of the birds by the artist and museum and notified PETA of the findings.
In April, CAA investigated the complaint raised by several artists who lent work to the 2010 World Festival of Black Artists and Cultures in Senegal that was not returned due to a dispute with an art shipper in Dakar. CAA determined that the situation did not need the organization’s assistance.
Michael Fahlund, CAA deputy director, testified on behalf of the organization at an oversight hearing convened by New York City’s Committee on Cultural Affairs, Libraries, and International Intergroup Relations on January 25, 2012, regarding increasing access to affordable health insurance for artists. Even though CAA is an international organization, its office is in the state of New York; presently the healthcare industry is regulated state by state. Fahlund proposed that CAA be given “employer status” in relation to its members living in New York State in order to provide health-insurance options for them. The committee’s discussions are ongoing.
CAA monitored a federal bill, the Research Works Act (H.R. 3699), that was introduced in the US House of Representatives on December 16, 2011, by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and cosponsored by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY)— chairman and member, respectively, of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. The legislation would prohibit federal agencies from mandating free access to scholarly articles submitted to a scientific or scholarly publication without the consent of the publisher. This act primarily addresses science and technology publications but, if enacted, could affect art and humanities publications as well. Many learned societies who are publishers oppose the legislation, and CAA board members have begun discussing the issue and are paying close attention to the legislation’s development.
Representing CAA, Fahlund contributed his expertise to a National Coalition Against Censorship committee that developed Museum Best Practices for Managing Controversy, published in May. The document offers guidance for institutions to turn controversial situations into learning experiences for their public. The committee comprised representatives from the American Association of Museums, the Association of Art Museum Directors, the Association of Art Museum Curators, Columbia University, Arizona State University, the University of Washington, and the New School. CAA’s Museum Committee is reviewing the guideline and will present it for adoption at the CAA board meeting on October 28, 2012.
Fahlund also worked with a liability insurance broker, Herbert L. Jamison and Co. LLC, and Philadelphia Insurance Companies, and with two CAA members, Barbara Buhler Lynes and Nancy Mowll Mathews, to establish comprehensive, affordable liability insurance for art historians and artists who authenticate works of art. Such insurance would help defend against a damaging financial loss that could occur from alleged mistakes or negligence. CAA does not administer the insurance but acts as a referral to the insurance company; in a brief article from this past January, Fahlund offers helpful loss-prevention tips for the art professional to avoid potential workplace liabilities.
Last month CAA signed onto a letter from the Association of Art Museum Directors sent to Congress, urging legislators to pass the Foreign Cultural Exchange Jurisdictional Immunity Clarification Act (S. 2212), a proposed law that would shield a loaned work of art from a non-US collection from being seized by anyone with a claim to legal ownership while the art is on display in the country. According to the letter, the US has “long provided the crucial legal protection that helps make loans from foreign museums possible” through the Department of State, until a 2004–8 lawsuit involving heirs of Kasimir Malevich and the City of Amsterdam weakened those protections. The House passed the bill (H.R. 4086), which the Senate is now debating.
As a member of the Coalition on the Academic Workforce, a group that addresses workforce issues in higher education, CAA helped to prepare and administer a 2010 survey on contingent-faculty issues. The results have been tabulated and will be distributed soon. More than one thousand CAA members filled out the survey. [June 20 update: the survey results have been published.]
Founded as an advocate for the visual arts in higher education, CAA actively engages matters of public policy, litigation, and activism at the local, state, federal, and international levels. For further information, visit the Advocacy section of the website. If you have questions or have advocacy issues you would like to bring to the attention of the CAA board, please contact Anne Collins Goodyear, CAA president, and Linda Downs, CAA executive director and chief executive officer, at email@example.com.