Effective governance is now more important than ever to ensure that universities preserve the autonomy fundamental to the vital role they play in our society. These exciting institutions are at the forefront of research and teaching and are expected to be drivers and facilitators of social and technological change, innovation, commercialization, and knowledge transfer. As educators and recipients of significant public funds, they are the focus of public opinion and close financial scrutiny, and must work to comply with ever-changing government policy and increasing regulation.
This book is for those who want to learn more about and to participate in university governance. The governance context for universities is unique, and playing a positive and effective role in university governance requires understanding this exceptionality: important concepts, the complex stakeholder context, decision-making structures, and the allocation of responsibilities within the university sector.
An Introduction to University Governance is a resource to support current and prospective university governance professionals and those serving on university boards and academic governing bodies, and will be of interest to members of government, consultants, lawyers, mediators, arbitrators, and others who work closely with universities. It is intended to be an accessible rather than an academic book, written to encourage more effective university governance with more engaged participants within the over-150 universities in Canada.
About the author
Cheryl Foy believes that good governance is foundational to organizational effectiveness. She has worked in governance for twenty years, having held general counsel and corporate secretary executive roles with public and private technology companies and at two Ontario universities. She is currently university secretary and general counsel at Ontario Tech University. She also acts as the university’s chief Privacy, Compliance and Risk Officer. She is a published writer and is currently writing a column on ethics for Canadian Lawyer InHouse and a column called “Legally Speaking” for University Affairs magazine. In support of her governance work, Ms. Foy provides additional information and resources on her website at: www.universitygovernance.ca. She was awarded the Women’s Law Association of Ontario General Counsel Award in 2020 for her leadership and her commitment to the success of women in law.
Ms. Foy is an advocate for good governance and the development of the in-house legal profession. She is a founder and the past president of Women General Counsel Canada, a national organization established by female general counsel who recognize that the role of general counsel is a unique leadership role bridging law and business and also that women in the general counsel role have common challenges and opportunities. She has served on a number of boards and currently serves as investment committee chair and board member for the Canadian Universities Reciprocal Insurance Exchange.
Ms. Foy holds an honours bachelor of arts degree in political studies and a bachelor of laws, from Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario, and was called to the Ontario bar in 1995.