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But what about faculty-faculty relationships, or faculty-administrator relationships?An ongoing legal case resulting in a dean’s resignation from Stanford University raises questions about what policies or best practices govern employee romance.This comes up most often at the departmental level when, for example, one faculty member who is married to another faculty member becomes chair, he said.But there’s no formal policy regarding unmarried couples.How in situations like this, or just between colleagues, can you prohibit relationships, even if those relationships could ultimately be problematic?” From the faculty perspective, the American Association of University Professors also has no policy regarding faculty-faculty or faculty-supervisor relationships.James Phills, who was let go from Stanford this year, alleges discriminatory treatment by the university due to his entanglement in the dean’s love life.Stanford denies the claim, saying that Phills -- who had been a nontenured faculty member since 2003, several years after his wife was appointed to a tenured position -- was terminated for failing to return after multiple leaves of absence to work in Silicon Valley.
But in business it’s “far more likely to have someone senior or in HR tell you it's really a bad idea to date subordinates,” he added.) Herman A.“The faculty member in the next office could easily be the next department chair or dean or head of the faculty personnel committee,” he said.“Being a supervisor in higher ed is often more fluid than in many other industries.Anita Levy, associate secretary for tenure, academic freedom and governance, said the issue rarely if ever comes up. Bates Distinguished Chair in Law at the University of Houston Law Center and director of its Institute for Higher Education Law and Governance, and former general counsel for the AAUP, said that’s probably true, and that cases like the one at Stanford make news because they’re rare.Olivas said the higher up employees go in the administrative ranks, the more likely they are to build a kind of “Chinese wall” between themselves and faculty members to stave off scandal, or at least perceptions of bias -- good or bad.