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Aalto University Department of Film, TV and Scenography Appoints Dāvis Sīmanis to Adjunct Position in Film Directing

He starts in his part-time position as of 1 August 2016.

Latvian film director, Doctor of Arts Dāvis Sīmanis has been nominated to Adjunct Professor in Film Directing as of 1.8.2016. The Adjunct Professor position allows highly qualified researchers to engage in teaching on a part-time basis.

In May a hiring committee of film faculty unanimously recommended Latvian film director, Dāvis Sīmanis to be appointed as the Associate Professor in Film Directing (non-tenured) for a five years’ period at the Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, Department of Film, TV and Scenography.  

The position was only the second tenure hire in the area of film, although tenure has been a standard in Aalto University. Provost Ilkka Niemelä says, “The tenure process is fairly new to the Department of Film, TV and Scenography, but it’s nothing new to Aalto University.  We have had almost 240 new professors in this way. The tenure track system has proven to be competitive in hiring talent from all over the world” 

After the offer of appointment by Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture Dean Anna Valtonen, there was public criticism of the hiring process. The committee’s proposal was reviewed and ultimately we saw no evidence of bias. Says Valtonen, “We recognize the very serious nature of the accusations and have held this process under scrutiny. After review, we stand behind our committee’s decision.”

Following the debate on social media, the candidate felt uncomfortable with accepting the position. Aalto also felt the situation was unacceptable.  Through further negotiations Sīmanis was offered an adjunct professor position. Valtonen adds, ”[This way] the film department is able to maintain teaching load and Sīmanis gets experience working within the school. On the basis of that experience he has the possibility to consider if he would take the tenure track position.”

More information:

Anna Valtonen, Dean, Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, tel. 050 592 2317, [email protected]

David Lewis, Communications Manager, Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, tel. 050 305 6206, [email protected]

Aalto University tenure track is a career system for talented academics in the position of professor and is the foundation of Aalto University’s objective to be a world-class university. The tenure process is based on an open international recruitment; on merits of research and/or artistic work, teaching and service. Candidates can be recruited to any of the three levels depending on experience and competence. Tenure track professors are evaluated in different phases of the career path: www.aalto.fi/en/tenure-track

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