2008Q1 Reports: LTA Procedure
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Dear ACL Exec, At the 'phone conference Saturday we somehow didn't get to this matter. It is becoming too urgent to leave till another 'phone call. There are two issues: one is what procedure to follow for LTA and the other is deciding the LTA recipient for this year. We are trying to resolve these two issues in parallel but it is the latter that is most urgent. Here is the procedure that we have come up with. It isn't clear how much of it we can conform to this year but its maybe something to aim for. You will see that we are proposing fairly radically that a nominating committee be charged with coming up with a nomination. This is not an attempt to preempt the powers of Exec, but rather to ensure reliable convergence. We ask you to note that ACL Exec still has complete power over the final decision. Yrs Bonnie Dorr, Mark Steeedman PROPOSED PROCEDURE FOR DETERMINING ACL LTA RECIPIENT. The purpose of the these Principles and Procedure is to ensure a) due diligence; b) continuity; and c) confidentiality. PRINCIPLES The ACL Lifetime Achievement award is, as its name indicates, a recognition for widely recognized, sustained, and enduring contributions to our field over a long period. It is not awarded merely for outstanding recent contributions to a currently hot topic. Candidates for the award will generally be senior, with a working lifetime of contributions, even though they will often be active in research. There may be issues of timeliness. These considerations make the decison to make an award highly sensitive. It is important that the award be seen by the membership as appropriate and timely. There may be issues of representation. Above all, there should not be any widespread perception that a deserving candidate has been passed over. It follows that there is a responsibility on the executive to not merely seek advocacy, but also maintain a consistent and continuous collective wisdom concerning people in the field who should be considered by the current Executive and future ones. It should not be possible for someone to be passed over by accident. We do not have to make an award every year. PROCEDURE 1) There will be a LTA nominating committee (LTANC) consisting of the Nominating Committee (that is, the last three presidents) plus the current president of ACL, who will chair, and current vice president. LTANC is charged with coming up with a single candidate under the above principles 2) The LTANC will call for nominations from the executive together with updates of any nominations carried forward from previous years New recommendations and updates should take the form of a written case addressing eligibility under the criteria for the award. 3) The LTANC will strive to converge on unanimous support for a candidate for the current year. The LTANC will seek advice from respected impartial senior figures in the field, such as previous recipients of the award. 4) The LTANC will propose the candidate for the approval of the ACL executive, providing whatever explanations and supporting documentation the Executive requires, and commenting on other cases that should be carried forward for future consideration. 5) The ACL secretary will be responsible for confidential safe-keeping of dossiers that are carried over in this way, and for passing them to the next LTA nominating committee.