Task Force on Contingency

Members of the Task Force on contingency are appointed by President Diane Yeager in April 2018 to serve through the end of the January meeting in 2020.  It is the expectation of the Board that the Task Force will provide

  • an interim report to the Board November 1, 2018, so that it may be included among the reports provided to the Board for discussion and, if appropriate, action at its January 2019 meeting, and
  • a final report to the Board November 1, 2019, for discussion and, if appropriate, action at its January 2020 meeting.  Ideally this final report would be offered primarily in the form of recommendations for action.

The disruptive changes that we are observing in higher education are national in scope and severe in impact.  The charge to the Task Force is therefore necessarily a broad one.  The Task Force is asked

  • To assess the relevant available data on contingent faculty appointments in order to offer a brief addendum, on the subject of contingent faculty hiring, to the Report of the 2020 Future of Christian Ethics Committee.
  • To differentiate clearly among the forms of contingent appointments so as to help us name and address the various issues with which we are contending.
  • To assess the likely impact of the growing number of contingent appointments of all kinds on the future viability of the Society of Christian Ethics, and to make recommendations as to how the SCE might successfully adapt itself to these new realities in faculty employment.
  • To consider how these new patterns of faculty employment are being implemented by various types of institutions, what forces lie behind these disruptive changes, whether the shift to these new patterns is being conducted in a just and responsible way, and whether the SCE has any appropriate role to play or voice to raise in helping institutions develop ethically responsible best practices in these matters.
  • To consider whether graduate programs in our field may be contributing to the problem, and if so, whether the SCE has any appropriate role to play or voice to raise in addressing the possibility of inadvertent complicity.


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Matthew John Gaudet
Santa Clara University
Adjunct Lecturer
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Cristina L.H. Traina
Northwestern University
Associate Professor of Religion
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Kerry B. Danner
Georgetown University
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Robyn E. Henderson-Espinoza
Vanderbilt University
Visiting Scholar
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Melanie C Jones
Chicago Theological Seminary
Graduate Student
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James F. Keenan
Boston College
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John Kelsay
Florida State University
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Rebecca Todd T Peters
Elon University
Associate Professor
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Karen Peterson-Iyer
Santa Clara University
Lecturer, Dept of Religious Studies
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Brian E. Stiltner
Sacred Heart University
Associate Professor of Religious Studies