C. Non-Discrimination and Affirmative Action

(1)   Non-Discrimination and Affirmative Action Policy

Officers of instruction and administration are responsible for ensuring that there is no discrimination in the employment or treatment of qualified individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, creed, national origin, ancestry, age, protected veteran status, disability, genetic information, military service, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or other protected status.

The affirmative action plan adopted by the University requires the Faculty to take appropriate steps to identify diverse candidates, including women, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and protected veterans, for most positions. The responsibility for compliance with affirmative action procedures resides in the first instance with the officer making the appointment recommendation. The following structures are in place to enhance the recruitment of diverse faculty members:

a.   The chairs of departments and the chairs of search committees are responsible for actively pursuing opportunities to appoint diverse individuals, including women and minorities, to positions at all levels.

b.   The Deans of Arts and Humanities, Science, Social Science, and the John A. Paulson Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences are responsible for supervising the implementation of affirmative action policies within their respective divisions/School.

c.   The FAS’s Office for Faculty Affairs reviews departmental affirmative action efforts, focusing on the representation of diverse populations, including women and minorities, in each department, the representation of diverse populations in the relevant pool of doctorates, and the department’s efforts to identify and attract appropriate diverse individuals, including women and minorities. In addition, reports that directly address affirmative action efforts made in each search are submitted by the department chair to the divisional dean in advance of approval of candidates for campus visits and offers. The FAS Senior Adviser on Faculty Development also offers educational outreach on ensuring the integrity of faculty searches at each stage of the process.

(2)   Advertisement Information

When hiring an employee from outside of Harvard, the position is advertised in order to reach the maximum pool of realistic applicants. Suggestions for publications in which to post teaching faculty positions include:

  • Departmental websites
  • HERC (New England Higher Education Recruitment Consortium) website
  • Field-related Internet list-serves
  • Field-related publications
  • The Chronicle of Higher Education

Advertising copy must note that Harvard is “an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, creed, national origin, ancestry, age, protected veteran status, disability, genetic information, military service, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or other protected status.” Care should be taken to avoid language that could be construed as discriminatory with regard to age. For teaching appointments, it is strongly recommended that at least one form of the advertisement be published in print. For research appointments, print advertisements are not required; online advertisements are sufficient. (Please refer to the “Appointment of a Foreign National” section for more information on advertisement requirements in a search which may result in the hire of a foreign national.) Advertisements clearly list required documents, such as CVs, reference letters, evidence of teaching effectiveness, and writing samples. Advertisements also indicate the rank and field being sought, broadly defined; the start date of the appointment; teaching and advising expectations (for example, “The appointee will teach and advise students at the undergraduate and graduate level”); and the qualities being sought in a candidate. If a doctorate is required for the position, the ad should state, “Candidates are required to have a doctorate.” For appointment types where a doctorate is required and candidates may be hired prior to final completion of their doctoral programs, the ad should state, “Candidates are required to have a doctorate or terminal degree in [field] or related discipline by the time the appointment begins.” Ads include a date after which departments will stop accepting applications, or departments can encourage candidates to apply by a specific date, while indicating that applications will be reviewed until the position is filled. Ads should include the ARIeS link or e-mail address to which applications are to be sent. Departments should not finalize their short lists of candidates before an application deadline has passed.

Advertisements must be reviewed and approved by the assistant dean for the appropriate division before being posted.

(3)   Search Requirements

Search data must be compiled and submitted with the appointment materials of the successful candidate. If a search is required, the appointment materials should include the following information:

  • A description of the search procedures
  • Specific comparison of the finalist to all other leading candidates (in particular, women and minorities), and reasons why the other leading candidates were not chosen
  • Copies of all advertising and related correspondence
  • The Departmental EEO Report displaying aggregate demographic data from the search. This report can be retrieved through the ARIeS system. For internally paid postdoctoral fellows and research associates, please use the “Affirmative Action Form” available from the FAS Faculty Affairs Appointments Office.

The following are the only valid search exemptions for faculty appointments:

  • A dependent lectureship
  • An appointment to teach a maximum of one four-credit course for one academic year.

Note: If an appointment is exempt from a search, the department should indicate this, along with the reason for the exemption, in the comments section in Aurora.

(4)   Affirmative Action Race/Ethnicity Codes

Hispanic or Latino: A person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin regardless of race.

White: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa.

Black or African American: A person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa.

Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander:  A person having origins in any of the peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands.

Asian: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian Subcontinent, including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam.

American Indian or Alaska Native: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America), and who maintains tribal affiliation or community attachment.

(5)   Work Relationships: Employment of Members of Immediate Family or Household

For information on Harvard University’s policy on work relationships (formerly “nepotism”), please see https://hr.harvard.edu/staff-personnel-manual/general-employment-policies/work-relationships.

Questions on the interpretation of this policy as it applies to faculty and professional research appointments in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences should be referred to the Office for Faculty Affairs.