University Governance and Organization

Volume 1, Chapter 3



Constitution of the State of California, Article IX, Section 9. (link)

The University of California (University) was chartered in 1868 by the Constitution of the State of California; classes began in Oakland one year later. Today, with its ten campuses, national laboratory, a Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and numerous other units and affiliated institutions, the University is considered one of the largest and most renowned centers of higher education in the world.

This chapter outlines the University's basic organizational structure and lines of authority for governance and facilities management, and briefly discusses the preparation of Regents' materials.

(See Universitywide Organization Charts at the UCOP website.)

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Governance of the University is entrusted to the Board of Regents (The Regents). The Regents appoint the President of the University and, with the President's advice, the officers of the University. Among these officers are the Executive and Senior Vice Presidents, other Vice Presidents, the Chancellors, and the Laboratory Director. The Regents also appoint their own principal officers: the General Counsel, the Treasurer, and the Secretary and Chief of Staff.

3.1.1 The Regents


Bylaws and Standing Orders of The Regents of the University of California, Office of the Secretary of The Regents, Oakland, CA, adopted April 18, 1969 (and succeeding amendments).

The Regents' role is similar to that of the board of directors of a large corporation, responsible in this case for governing and setting policy for the University.

Members. The Regents consist of 26 members: 18 each appointed by the Governor of California to a 12-year term; one student appointed by The Regents to a one-year term; and seven ex-officio members (the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, the Speaker of the Assembly, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, the President of the University, and the President and Vice President of the Alumni Associations of the University). In the history of the University, more than 400 people have held the position of Regent.

Although the Governor is officially the President of The Regents, in practice, The Regents' Chairperson is the presiding officer. Both the Chairperson and the Vice Chairperson are elected from among The Regents' membership to a one-year term.

Committees. The Regents operate through ten standing committees: Compliance and Audit, Educational Policy, Finance, Grounds and Buildings, Health Services, Investments, Compensation, Governance, Long Range Planning and Oversight of Department of Energy Laboratories. There are also a varying number of subcommittees and special committees.

Meetings. The Regents hold six, two-day meetings each year. Standing and special committees meet as required, usually on the day preceding The Regents' meetings.

Authority. The Regents have the basic authority for governing the physical planning, design, construction, operation, and maintenance of the University's facilities. This authority is set forth in the Bylaws of The Regents.

The Regents have delegated much operational authority to the University President, and have delegated some authority to University faculty in matters related to academic programs.

With few exceptions, all matters requiring Regental action are first considered by the appropriate Regents' committee, which has authority only to recommend or report to The Regents.

3.1.2 The President


Standing Orders of The Regents, 100.4, "Duties of the President of the University."

The President of the University is an ex-officio Regent and an officer of the University who is responsible to The Regents.

Authority. Authority in facilities-related matters is delegated by The Regents to the President. The President can therefore determine facilities-related policy for the University. Duties of the President are listed in the Standing Orders of The Regents.

Office of the President. The Office of the President is composed of the President, the President's staff, and the Executive and Senior Vice Presidents, other Vice Presidents, and their respective staffs.

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Within the Facilities Manual, the proper name Facility is given to any University campus, laboratory, unit of the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, or location of any other administrative unit. The common term facility refers to a building, structure, site or ground improvement, or other item built or installed to serve the University's mission of providing academic, scientific, and public service.

3.2.1 Campuses

Each of the ten University campuses is managed by a Chancellor who is an officer of the University and is responsible to the President. The ten campuses are Berkeley, Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, Merced, Riverside, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, and Santa Cruz.

Authority. Authority in facilities-related matters is delegated by the President to each of the ten Chancellors. Each Chancellor determines policy for the campus.

Office of the Chancellor. The Office of the Chancellor is composed of the Chancellor, the Vice Chancellors, the Directors of University Hospitals, and their respective staffs. The Vice Chancellors and Directors report directly to the Chancellor and indirectly to the President through the Chancellor. Normally, one Vice Chancellor is assigned duties in facilities-related matters.

3.2.2 Government Laboratory

The Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory is managed by a Director who is an officer of the University and is responsible to the President. (The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and Los Alamos (New Mexico) National Laboratory are each managed by an LLC of which the University is a member.)

Authority. Authority in facilities-related matters is delegated by the President to the Laboratory Directors. The Director determines policy for the laboratory.

Office of the Director. The Office of the Director is composed of the Director, the Director's staff, and the Deputy Directors and their staffs. The Deputy Directors are officers of the University who report directly to the Director and indirectly to the President through the Director. Normally, one Deputy Director is assigned duties in facilities-related matters.

3.2.3 Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources

The Office of the Vice President Agriculture and Natural Resources (VP A&NR) resides within the Office of the President. The VP A&NR is usually delegated authority in facilities-related matters and manages the facilities program from an office on the Davis campus.

3.2.4 Other Administrative Units

Certain University units such as the University of California Press, University Extension, and the Laboratory of Biomedical and Environmental Sciences have not been delegated authority in facilities-related matters. These functions are normally performed by the facilities management department at the Facility where each unit is located.

3.2.5 Affiliated Units

The Hastings College of the Law and the San Francisco Art Institute are affiliated with the University but are not subject to University policies and procedures regarding facilities-related matters.

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Regents’ Meeting Planning & Process ( Within the Office of the President, the Immediate Office of the Provost coordinates Regents’ Meeting agenda items from the campuses. The final meeting agenda is prepared by the Secretary. Facilities should refer to the materials on the referenced website when preparing agenda items or other materials for The Regents such as Interim Authority items and Emergency Authority items. Copies of the guide have been distributed to the Vice Presidents, the Chancellors, and the Laboratory Director. Regents' Coordinators at each Facility and at the Office of the President are available to assist in the preparation of Regents' materials.

Approval of Building Design. (See FM3 for guidelines on preparing Regents' items regarding the approval of a building design.)

Regents' Agenda Items. The Treasurer, General Counsel, and Secretary and Chief of Staff to The Regents prepare their own agenda items which the Secretary assembles and mails. The Regents’ Agenda Coordinators at the Office of the President ( prepare all other items, duplicate them in the proper quantities and forward them to the Secretary for mailing as the President's portion of the agenda.

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Change No. 11-005-P (April 1, 2011)

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