In the spring of 2018, some students studying at the Faculty of Arts had an idea: Since DAG representatives in the University Council were able to exert pressure on the Central Board of the University rather successfully, perhaps something similar could be achieved at the Faculty Council of the Arts?
Thus DAG Arts was formed and a list of students ran in the elections. The success was overwhelming! For the academic year of 2018-19, four out of nine student seats in the Council were filled by DAG. These four representatives were: Anke van Dijk, Bart Hekkema, Hidde Luchtenbelt and Minja Sillanpää. For the academic year of 2019-20, three students were elected to represent DAG in the Faculty Council. The three representatives this year are Hidde Luchtenbelt, Mehran Abdollahi and Betsy van Drie.
DAG Arts entered in the Council with the hope that decision-making of the faculty could be influenced from within. However, not a lot of time passed before it became clear that the Council has very little democratic mandate in the current system. The student and staff representatives are mostly asked to “express their sentiments” on agenda points dictated by the Faculty Board. The representatives are entitled to write memos on issues they consider important, but the Board is not obliged to act on any of the requests.
Since it is becoming increasingly clear that there are only indirect ways to influence through the Council “politics”, the faction has become increasingly occupied with the question of how to increase awareness of the democratic deficits and the decision-making within the faculty community. For this reason, the focal point of the faction became to demand the Board to increase its transparency and proactiveness in information diffusion.
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