Cluster hiring is a process by which faculty are recruited in groups built around common research and academic themes. Over the years, Florida State University has utilized this strategy to build a number of areas of strength including materials research, structural biology and computational science. Clusters create an immediate critical mass of expertise that leverages existing strengths. In the fall of 2005, the College of Arts & Sciences and College of Medicine initiated a joint effort to hire six faculty in a Neuroscience cluster.
Through Pathways of Excellence, the hiring of 200 additional tenured and tenure-track faculty at the University will be authorized. This investment in faculty scholars will be accomplished via cluster hiring in which 5 to 8 faculty will be recruited for each cluster. The clusters will be primarily of an interdisciplinary nature involving the participation of two or more academic units. Proposals for new interdisciplinary programs are developed by groups of FSU faculty groups and evaluated annually by a faculty committee before being submitted to Provost Lawrence G. Abele for final approval.
Thus far, nine cluster hiring initiatives have been approved and active searches are on-going. A significant number of new scholars at all levels from Assistant to Full Professor have joined the ranks of the faculty at the Florida State University.