Amsterdam, 18.12.2015

Dear Members of the Central Student Council and Central Works Council,

We write in relation to the ongoing selection procedure for two new members of the University’s Board of Directors. We understand that a shortlist has been drawn up, and that the finalists’ identities will not be disclosed until a final selection has been made. According to the current procedure you will only be notified of the appointees’ identities for the purposes of a perfunctory draagvlakgesprek, to be held less than 24 hours before the Advisory Board formally appoints the new Rector and Chair.

We find that this arrangement undermines your capacity to meaningfully exercise your democratic mandate, and even your specific function in the appointment procedure. Such haste and lack of transparency are at odds with the spirit of openness that should characterise academia.

We call upon you, as our democratically elected representatives, to vindicate your proper role by refusing this problematic procedure. In particular, we urge you to:

● Extend the timeframe for the draagvlakgesprek in a way that will allow you to properly vet the candidate/s in proper consultation with the University community;

● Refuse to support any candidates who haven’t presented themselves to the University community by 13 January 2016 — we are sending an open letter to all shortlisted candidates to invite them to a meeting we organised for this purpose in the Maagdenhuis, at 17:30 on that day.

You can count on our support in your efforts to consolidate and extend the democratic progress we are making together in this University.

Yours sincerely,

ASVA Student Union

De Nieuwe Universiteit


Humanities Rally

ReThink UvA

University of Colour