at Cal Lutheran

The ADRI Matrix

Amongst other duties, the Task Force on Shared Governance worked closely with President Varlotta to design and populate a number of Shared Governance Decision-Making Matrices that you can find here. Program unit leaders and stakeholders were also a part of this process.

ADRI: Approve, Decide, Recommend, Input

The purpose of the matrix is to provide direction and clarity in identifying the following: 

  • The individual(s) or group(s) delegated primary authority to make and approve decisions.
    Note: Even in these cases, ultimate authority resides with the board or with the president if authority has been delegated.
  • The individual(s) or group(s) charged with identifying the various dimensions of a decision and explaining how the decision can and should be implemented.
  • The individual(s) or group(s) expected to offer recommendations and input in key decision processes.

View the ADRI Matrix

Key Roles Associated with Shared Governance

Cal Lutheran is committed to a sustainable system of shared governance that supports the integrity, conviction, and mutual respect of collaborative decision making. Toward that end, it defines four distinct yet related roles associated with the system of shared governance adopted at the university.


Ultimate approval role is reserved for the Board of Regents. Often, however, the board delegates functional or operational approval to the president, who may further delegate it to another individual or group. As used in the matrix, Approve signals the group or person to which final (campus) approval has been delegated. The person or group that approves a decision must be able to secure or guarantee that resources are in place to implement the decision at hand. Those in the approval role are also charged with executing properly the decision and communicating it in a timely fashion. However, the approver may delegate execution or communication to another group or person.

To be clear, the board has the authority to reject the approval of any decision it perceives as being problematic to the welfare of the university or the financial well-being of the organization.


This individual or group may participate in the Recommend and/or Input phases. The individual or group in the Decide phase ensures that the recommendation is clearly articulated, operationally feasible, and free of any conflicts or impasses. It should be noted that there may be instances where several recommendations are submitted and the Decide group or individual will typically identify the most suitable recommendation. This may be particularly true if the recommendations propose different actions. Those participating at this level must be sure that the decision is ready for implementation should it be approved by those who are empowered to do so.


The Recommend role may include the duties described in the input role. However, the main focus for this group or individual is to take all the gathered information and propose a formal course of action — sometimes including alternative courses, complete with pros and cons. Those participating at this level should ensure that those in the “D” and “A” groups are presented with choices that are as clear, simple, and as timely as possible.


The Input role is an advisory one where parties provide relevant information, provide expertise and analyze data so that the Recommender and Decider can evaluate the facts and make the best decision.


On matters where the faculty have primary responsibility, the power of review or final decision lodged in the Board of Regents or delegated to it by the president should be exercised adversely only in exceptional circumstances, and for reasons communicated to the faculty. The faculty should, following such communication, have opportunity for further consideration and further transmittal of its views to the president. Budgets, personnel limitations, the time element, and the policies of other groups, bodies, and agencies having jurisdiction over the institution may set limits to realization of faculty advice.