Thursday, April 7, 2022
...from the AALS. A couple of striking data points: "Most successful dean candidacies are initiated by someone else (62%)" and "More than one-half (59%) of deans are selected after a search that involves a search firm." The latter is particularly surprising, given how clueless these search firms usually are, at least in my experience.
On the other hand, polling the Deans themselves about what helps them succeed in their role as Dean seems like an unsound methodology: my impression is that a majority of Deans do not succeed and are not very good at the job (it's a rather difficult and often unpleasant job, or so it seems to me!). It would be more interesting to poll just those Deans whom others (e.g., faculty, alumni, students) judge to be successful!