Universities and other HEIs in Greece have been undergoing systemic reform following a new law introduced in 2011 (N4009/2011) and subsequent amendments in 2012 (N4076/2012). This new legal framework affecting the structure and governance of the University’s academic authorities, is again pending revision. Under the current 2011/12 legal framework, the University is governed by
a) the Council
b) the Rector
c) the Senate
The new legal framework introduces a ‘second chamber’ to the Senate in the form of the University Council, and brings in representatives from outside the University community. The 15-member Council consists of up to nine members of the University (eight senior faculty members and one student representative) and 6 external members (citizens distinguished for their national/international contributions to the sciences, arts or literature). The student representative is elected for a one-year term while all other members are elected for a 4-year term.
The Council’s responsibilities include strategic planning for the development of the University at all levels - local, national, European and international. The Council also reviews the recommendations of the Senate and the Rector on a range of governance and policy issues, including the University’s internal regulations and quality assurance procedures, as well as approving the financial accounts and ensuring that the University is functioning in compliance with state laws.
Under the current legal framework, a Rector will be a full professor from a national or international HEI elected for a 4-year term by the University’s Faculty members only, from a shortlist of 3 candidates selected by the Council following an international call for applicants. The Rector, with the approval of the Council, can appoint senior faculty members to act as his deputies, with specific duties as approved by the Senate.
The Rector represents the University and is responsible for the functioning of all departments. The Rector’s responsibilities include convening the Senate, setting the agenda, and presiding over its work, as well as overseeing plans concerning the University’s organization, internal regulations, the financial budgets, accounts, capital investment programmes, and the University’s annual report, and proposing these to the Council.
The 2011/12 legal framework radically alters the size and composition of the Senate, shifting the balance of representation to faculty members by limiting student representation to one person per degree cycle (i.e. a maximum of 3). The Senate now comprises
- the Rector
- the Deans
- Department Chairpersons, up to two per School , for a 2-year term
- three student representatives (one per degree cycle), each to be elected for a one-year term
- one representatives of each recognized category of administrative and academic support staff, for a 2-year term
The University Senate is the highest collective academic authority of the University, responsible for developing the educational and research policy of the University. Its remit includes quality assurance; overseeing the management of third-party funding; developing the work on continuing and life-long learning; overseeing the recruitment and promotion procedures for faculty; the regulations governing first, second and third cycle degrees and all other educational programs of the University, as well as decisions on joint educational/study programs with other HEIs and research centres nationally and internationally. The Senate is also responsible for initiatives for collaboration between the University and national and international educational institutions and other scientific and social agencies
Academic management within the University is highly decentralized, with executive authority exercised through the Schools, Departments and Divisions, which have a high degree of autonomy in defining their respective educational and research policies.
Each School is headed by a Dean, elected by the School’s faculty members, and each School is governed by a Dean’s Council comprising the Dean, the Chairpersons of the School’s Departments and a student representative. The Deans are responsible for the day-to-day management and administration of the School, overseeing the School’s educational programs and constituting the committees for the recruitment, promotion and evaluation of faculty.
Under the existing structure the Departments, each of which consists of a number of Divisions, are the basic academic units of the University responsible for the degree programs. Each Department is headed by a Chairperson who is elected biannually, and each Division is headed by a Director. The decision-making body for each Division, Department, and School is a corresponding General Assembly, composed of the faculty and also student and staff representatives.
Last update 14/04/2016