Dear Colleague,

We’re writing to share some important updates about forming our union, Academic Researchers United.

UC administration files objections to forming our union
In mid-November, California’s Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) announced that a majority of Academic Researchers signed authorization cards in support of forming a union, Academic Researchers United / UAW. This paves the way for us to become the largest ever group of Academic Researchers in the US to form their own union. However, last week UC administration chose to deny recognition of our union, saying that “The University reasonably doubts the appropriateness of the proposed unit.”

We find UC’s position unacceptable. Majorities of Academic Researchers in every job title support forming a union and are currently participating in preparation for bargaining. Project Scientists, Specialists, Researchers, and CPPs all perform research or research-adjacent work, have fixed length appointments, share identical benefits, and have a similar promotion process – which is more than enough to constitute an appropriate unit. In fact, PERB—the State agency with the authority to make such decisions— has previously ruled that these employees are part of an appropriate unit. Rather than recognizing our union and meeting us at the bargaining table, UC administration has chosen instead to spend enormous amounts of time and money attempting to divide us and delay bargaining.

What happens now?
Thankfully, UC administration cannot unilaterally decide whether or not ARs have a union nor what the composition of our union is. We are hoping to meet soon with UC administrators and PERB, California’s state labor board, in hopes that this can be resolved amicably and our union can be certified. Ultimately, PERB can order a hearing if UC does not drop their objections voluntarily.

How can I help?
Get involved! We are meeting frequently at every campus to strategize how to respond to UC and to prepare for bargaining. Email us to let us know that you are interested and someone will be in touch soon. Also, if you have not yet filled out our bargaining survey please do so to provide critical feedback for bargaining!

Please also be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter to get all the news and updates. And, as always, you can contact us at if you have any questions.

In solidarity,

Academic Researchers United Organizing Committee

UC Berkeley
Holly Aaron, Specialist
Fred Bauman, Project Scientist
Sadie Costello, Assistant Researcher
Benjamin Croze, Junior Specialist
Mark Delucci, Researcher
Vincent Guacci, Assistant Researcher
Howard Isaacson, Specialist
Bo Liu, Associate Specialist
Sa Liu, Associate Researcher
Benjamin Lynch, Associate Researcher
Karen Orlando, Coordinator of Public Programs
Jessica Penchos, Coordinator of Public Programs
Isabella Rauch, Associate Specialist
Anatalia Robles, Associate Specialist
Kelsie Scruggs, Coordinator of Public Programs
Adam Zeilinger, Associate Specialist

UC Davis
Gerard Arino Estrada, Assistant Project Scientist
Leah Hartman, Junior Specialist
Tony Herren, Assistant Project Scientist
Karam Kim, Project Scientist
Sergio Silva, Junior Specialist
Vikrant Singh, Project Scientist

UC Irvine
Andrea Anzalone, Project Scientist
Briac Halbout, Assistant Project Scientist
Guaciara M. dos Santos, Project Scientist
Christopher Ma, Associate Specialist
Rongwei Mao, Associate Specialist
Kishore Pangaluru, Assistant Project Scientist
Amanda Wortman, Specialist

Silvia Diaz-Perez, Associate Project Scientist
Stephen Hancock, Assistant Project Scientist
Christian Hofmann, Assistant Project Scientist
Laura Marinelli, Assistant Researcher
Dennis Montoya, Assistant Researcher
Manash Paul, Assistant Project Scientist
Christina Priest, Assistant Project Scientist
Anna Salazar, Assistant Project Scientist
Rosane Teles, Assistant Project Scientist
Paolo Zimmaro, Assistant Project Scientist

UC Merced
David Quint, Associate Project Scientist
Arianna Campiani, Associate Specialist
Mourad Sadqi, Assistant Project Scientist

UC Riverside
Ahmed Farouk Abdalla, Assistant Project Scientist
Maria Irigoyen, Assistant Project Scientist
Miguel Lopez, Assistant Project Scientist

UC Santa Barbara
Heda Agic, Visiting Researcher
Evangeline Ballerini, Associate Specialist
Brandon Kuczenski, Associate Researcher

UC Santa Cruz
Sergio Covarrubias, Associate Specialist
Paul Mattern, Assistant Researcher
Andreas Rechtsteiner, Associate Project Scientist
Lisa Schwarz, Assistant Researcher
Stella Villegas, Assistant Project Scientist

UC San Diego
Rain Bosworth, Associate Researcher
Hugo Carreira, Assistant Project Scientist
Saikat Chakraborty Thakur, Associate Project Scientist
Ching-Wen Chang, Assistant Project Scientist
Mateusz Gola, Assistant Researcher
Sonia Podvin, Assistant Project Scientist
“Rina” Catherina Salanga, Assistant Project Scientist
Francesca Soncin, Assistant Project Scientist
Thomas Touboul, Assistant Project Scientist
Jonathan Yu, Associate Project Scientist
Chun Zheng, Assistant Project Scientist

UC San Francisco
Luke Bonser, Assistant Researcher
Jocelyne Fadiga, Junior Specialist
Royce Harner, Assistant Specialist
Sahar Houshdaran, Specialist
Maria Luisa Mandelli, Assistant Researcher
Nicole Nasholm, Associate Specialist
Ajay Ravindranathan, Specialist
Maike Roth, Assistant Specialist
Veronica Steri, Associate Specialist
Theo Tarver, Assistant Specialist
Tanner Wakefield, Assistant Specialist