Arkansas State UniversityJonesboro




 Shared Governance


Definition:  Shared Governance is the process by which the university community has the opportunity to influence decisions on matters of policy and procedure.


It should embody the following principles:

  • Those who will be affected by a decision on policy or procedures are entitled to be informed of and have the opportunity to influence governance issues.
  • A climate of shared governance relies upon consistent, trustworthy communication that is multidirectional.
  • All participants in the shared governance process (committees, constituent groups, administrative groups, and administrators) are accountable for the proper execution of their roles.
  • The principles of shared governance should permeate all levels of decision making within the university community.



  • Areas of Primary Concern:  While many governance issues will involve multiple constituencies, the process acknowledges that certain areas may be the primary concern of one group either because the matters considered have primary importance and concern to that group or because one group holds the expertise in those matters.
  • Proportional Representation:  Committee representation should be in proportion to the level of impact on constituencies.
  • Selection of Representatives:  The various constituencies should select their representatives to governance committees.
  • Diverse Representation:  Committee representation should reflect the racial, ethnic, and gender composition of the constituencies.


Procedural Integrity:

·        Authority:  The university’s published policies and procedures and the state’s rules and regulations are the authoritative frameworks within which shared governance operates. The spirit of shared governance requires both the administration and the governance committee to seek mutually acceptable recommendations.   When compromise and concurrence cannot be achieved, rationale for the administrative decision should be provided in written form to the involved committee.

·        Openness:  The process should be transparent and the status of any proposal should be available to all constituencies at any point in the approval process.

·        Notification:  Committees should provide constituencies with opportunities for discussion of policy and procedural issues prior to making final recommendations.

·        Timeliness:  Recommendations and decisions on proposals need to be made in a manner that is timely and appropriate to the issue, yet does not overlook the governance process for the sake of expediency. It may, on occasion, be necessary to use vehicles of collaboration that can be effectively carried out in accelerated periods of time. 

·    Oversight:  A process for evaluation and review of shared governance procedures, including a mechanism for initiating such a review, is essential to ensure that shared governance is working as intended.