I signed a deal as an undergraduate specialized lecturer with job description that prioritized research (followed by teaching). The (Human Capital) HC outlined these job descriptions when she offered me the deal, I love research and because it was the main focus of this position, I happily accepted the offer. However, soon after I joined I was assigned to another pogram in the same faculty. So on the top of research, teaching and lecturer administrative tasks, I am also "asked to help" with various social activities and all operations related to it, including gatherings (not academic related), parents' meetings, program marketing / promotion, etc. Most of these social tasks are done on a weekly basis, and it's draining me out (I'm not a social person).

Those weren't advertised to me during the deal offering. They're now plotting me for a post with more administrative responsibilities as priority, meanwhile I have signed a 2-year contract with a penalty, so resign is not an option. I already negotiated with the Dean and the Head Program however they have none of it. They're convinced that it's common sense to simply follow along what the Faculty requires because HC has no idea what the actual job descriptions are and has only supplied what is written on paper when offering the deal. They went all the way mentioning that :

"we saw something (values) in you and we were prepared to trust you with greater responsibilities".

I'm devastated. I didn't join academia as a lecturer to engage in various social events, deal with parents and their complains, etc. I joined academia specifically to pursue my passion for knowledge and research, teaching. Personally, I'm not keen on how they justify things in disguise of "helping the Faculty".

On the other hand, it's a good university with decent salary and I will be stuck here for 2 years anyway. I want to pursue PhD as well and I believe that experience in academia will look good on my CV. I negotiated before and failed miserably. For context, I live in a 3rd-world country and sadly we still have this work culture of work-life integrated (you should not separate work from personal life, make your work your life too), don't be picky and do what you're asked to do because it's a challenge, etc. In my last negotiation, they gave an example of another lecturer who rejected many administrative tasks and indeed he's currently having a hard time at work with less support from the Faculty. I don't want that to happen to me, I don't want to make my job any harder because I just started my contract. I want to minimize the negative repercussions, that's why instead of saying no, I want to try negotiate again. I believe I can reach them but I need better approach.

Any advice on how should I proceed in this kind of situation ?


The original deal mentioned my responsibilities will be 40% research, 20% teaching and the rest is a mixture of small fractions on tasks such as self-development / training, lecturer administrative task (creating exams, grading, etc), community service, etc. The new post will be 60% administrative tasks and the rest is divided for research & teaching, I don't know yet how much percentage each will be. As I mentioned, I'm currently being plotted to this position therefore I'm currently being involved in this 60% administrative stuff, not all yet, but soon will be, and I'm already overwhelmed. I would love to stick to the original deal if possible.

  • Could you add how many percent of your time you expend to spend on such activities in the long run (i.e., after you got used to them)? It will probably make a difference whether the number is 1% or 75%.
    – DCTLib
    Commented Apr 13, 2022 at 7:14
  • ...also, does "jobdesk" mean something like a "responsibilities of the holder of the position"? A dictionary or google search for that term doesn't find anything defining the term.
    – DCTLib
    Commented Apr 13, 2022 at 7:31
  • @DCTLib yes, it refers to responsibility, I have updated my question to answer both of your questions. Thank you.
    – raisa_
    Commented Apr 13, 2022 at 7:45
  • Thanks for the update. It makes the question more clear. A counter-question: are you sure that it will stay 60% admin? Apart from the time spent at the actual actual activities, you will become more efficient in preparing these activities over time.
    – DCTLib
    Commented Apr 13, 2022 at 8:08
  • 1
    Seems like a conversation with a local employment lawyer may help. You have a contract with a penalty to leave (unusual in the US to say the least), but they are changing your job assignment so it no longer matches your contract. That may be grounds to escape the contract without penalty.
    – Jon Custer
    Commented Apr 13, 2022 at 13:50


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