Graph of UC Administrative Growth

A graph showing the growth of UC administration, faculty, state funding and student fees was designed by the California Review alumni James Wu. See the startling results below.

UC student costs 1997-2011 vs CA state funding
• Also: # of Faculty and # of Senior Administrators.
• Student Fee is full student fee. State Funding is CA funding to the UC General Fund. Both are adjusted for inflation to CPI-U.
 • The # of Faculty is full-time-hours equivalent of regular ladder-based faculty (most common type of faculty).
• The # of Senior Management is full SMG (Senior Management Group) & MSP (Manager and Senior Professional) count.


  1. Every taxpayer in California and every fee-payer at the UC’s should see this chart. The UCs should be forced to include it in every publication & “advocacy email” they produce.

  2. Helen Helen · ·

    I’d like an explanation for the rise in administration costs that far far exceed any other category. And I don’t want to hear that they have to keep salaries sky-high to remain competitive as a world class institution.

  3. Milan Moravec · ·

    University of California faculty gains pay rises from California’s economy pain
    Democrats, Republicans face mortgage defaults, 19% unemployment (including those forced to work part time and those no longer searching), pay reductions, loss of unemployment benefits. UC Faculty receives pay increase. No layoff for Faculty, Chancellors during California’s longest deepest recession.
    There is no good reason to raise faculty salaries, tuition, fees when wage concessions are available. UC wages must reflect California’s ability to pay, not what others are paid. If wages better elsewhere, chancellors, tenured, non tenured faculty, UCOP apply for the positions. If wages determine commitment to UC Berkeley, leave for better paying position. The sky above the 10 campuses will not fall.
    It is time for Faculty, Chancellors to get a grip on financial realities.
    No furloughs. UCOP 18% reduction salaries & $50 million cut.
    Chancellors’, 18% cut. Tenured faculty 15% trim.
    Non-Tenured faculty, 10% reduction. Eliminate 100% Academic Senate, Council costs.
    It is especially galling to continue to generously compensate chancellors, faculty while Californians are making financial sacrifices and faculty, chancellor, turnover is the lowest of public universities.
    The message that President Yudof, UC Board of Regent Chair Lansing, UC Berkeley Birgeneau are sending is they have more concern for generously paid chancellors, faculty. The few at the top need to get a grip on economic reality, fairness.
    Email your opinion UC Board of Regents

  4. Mike Lazenka · ·

    This is either a incomplete assessment of the UC budget issues or a deliberately disingenuous and deceitful representation. Your graph conveniently ignores that more than half of the UC administrative growth of the past 15 years has come from the hiring of Dr’s in the UC system’s network of hospitals.

    Instead of conservative rags and pundits attacking higher ed and public sector unions, perhaps you should focus on the gross disparity of Executive pay in the private sector which has grown at 380 times the rate of worker pay in the last 25 years, at the same time those uber-wealthy execs are paying a smaller percentage of taxes than their counterparts have paid in the past 50 years.

    If those bloated compensation packages were taxed the way they were 30 years ago, we likely wouldn’t be having the budget crises that have prompted these types of discussions. However, when one thinks about it, a great tactic for continuing to increase the disparity between rich and poor in the US is to attack higher ed to undermine it and create a population that won’t be able to think critically and conduct research. That’s a great way to free you to publish tripe like this without any challenge.

  5. […] at historical trends to get perspective. Consider the following chart from the California Review (blog post here). It looks at inflation-adjusted budget numbers and faculty and senior management headcount from […]

  6. Oh good thing it says nothing about the proportion of the budget that’s spent on administrators. You know, the one thing that matters in this type of discussion.

  7. moravecglobal · ·

    Best Hope to Fix California Education: teacher faculty never-say-die spirit of more learning with fewer resources. “All you have to do is spend more (Prop 30, 38) on education” should be ignored as Prop 30, 38 do not serve our state’s school and university children. Additional money (Prop 30, 38) is not the magic elixir. We are kidding ourselves by believing that education funding shortfalls disappear with Prop 30, Prop 38.
    Prop 30, Prop 38 levy significant taxes on each one of us. The wounds that Prop 30, 38 are to heal have been self inflicted largely by our elected Sacramento politicians who simply do not say no to any influential interest group be they teachers, University of California (29% increase in salaries last 6 years), public employees business, or other unions or lobbyists.
    As election day approaches Prop 30, 38 are used by Sacramento politicians and lobbyists to blackmail us.
    Vote No on Prop 30, 38, 32. Save California education for our school and university children.

  8. There seems to be an “apples and oranges” comparison in the chart. Student cost is ‘per student’ but # of faculty and senior management is total. I’m presuming the Administration/Student ratio grows at a constant rate too, but without knowing how many students that growing pool of administrators administrate, it’s hard to tell.

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