Chapter 15

Ethics, Political Activities, and Outside Employment




The University of Wisconsin-Madison acts in accord with the "public policy of the state to encourage and foster to the fullest extent practicable the employment of all properly qualified individuals regardless of age, race, creed, color, disability, marital status, sex, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, arrest record, conviction record, membership in the national guard, state defense force or any other reserve component of the military forces of the United States or this state or use or nonuse of lawful products off the employer's premises during nonworking hours . . .." [§ 111.31(3) Wis. Stats.]

In selecting employees, the applicant best qualified and available to perform in the position should, without exception, receive the employment offer. There is no restriction on hiring persons related through affinity or consanguinity. In circumstances where a supervisor will have a close personal relationship with an employee which can reasonably be viewed as affecting the supervisor's and/or the employee's ability to perform his/her job without a conflict between personal interest and the employer's interest, the relationship is considered equivalent to a family relationship and the parties will be subject to the provisions of the nepotism policy. Therefore, to avoid conflict of interest, any University appointing authority or supervisor related by blood, marriage, or adoption to a job applicant, or having close relationship with emotional ties to an applicant, must not participate either formally or informally in the decision to hire or determine the salary of that other person.


Obtain Prior Written Approval

To avoid even the appearance of collusion or unfairness, obtain written prior approval from the Dean/Director's office and the Academic Personnel Office (APO) before making such appointments in the unclassified staff.

Other Required Procedures to Avoid Conflict of Interest


When two related persons are members of the same department, and one of them is chairperson of the department, the Executive Committee designates another appropriate person or a committee to perform the functions of the chairperson in decisions to hire or set the salary of the individual related to the department chairperson.

Above the Department Level

Whenever an administrator has jurisdiction over a related person, the responsibility for making decisions or approving decisions about the hire or salary of the related person must be assigned (in writing) (1) to the next highest University officer; or (2) laterally to another appropriate officer after approval of the next highest officer.


For further information on nepotism, see UWS Ch. 8 and § 111.31(3) Wis. Stats.