What Is A Cluster Search/Hire?
A cluster search seeks multiple faculty members from across disciplines who are working in a particular interdisciplinary field with the potential for broader social impact. Cluster hires have the potential to expand the University’s diversity and to reduce discipline- and institution-generated barriers to research. These searches are conducted collaboratively by several schools or departments. Rather than focusing on a particular school or particular “line,” the search committee reserves judgment on the appropriate tenure home (or homes) for the faculty members until after it has identified the strongest set of candidates in the broad interdisciplinary field.
UVA has embarked on a multi-year pan-university cluster hiring initiative, in which up to 20 new faculty members will be recruited each year through cluster searches with central financial assistance. Cluster searches provide both unique opportunities and specific challenges. This orientation document is intended to help search committees to navigate these challenges so that they will be poised to capitalize on this extraordinary opportunity.
What Kinds of Searches is UVA Conducting this Year?
During the 2017-2018 academic year, the University of Virginia will be conducting cluster hiring in the following areas:
Has UVA Successfully Hired this Way in the Past?
In academic year 2016, the University of Virginia initiated strategic cluster hiring under the Provost’s leadership and with the support of the Board of Visitors. UVA’s first year of cluster hiring yielded the following new faculty: