I chatted with a professor from USA a couple of days ago. Boy, how I envy him and his colleagues up there with regard to being a professor. They establish a faculty board which convenes regularly to discuss many things, including the eligibility of a lecturer for a professorship. The decision rests with the board as to whether someone has done sufficient research, taught well, and has a good conduct that makes him or her deserve to earn the highly respectable academic designation.
Not only that. In addition, once you are a professor, you are entitled to facilities and scheme which will enable you to generate works of your creative ideas in your academic field. It should come as no surprise that professors from his country are very productive in publication. They have not only complete facilities and rich literature, but also ample of time to finish writing a book or conduct research.
In my case, lecturers earn their professorship, and then the university will assign to them a post (or several posts, in my case) which mainly deals with administrative matters. Soon they find themselves engulfed with matters like manpower planning, curriculum design, student organization, academic senate, teaching hours allocation, and regulations concerning a wide range of things from dress code, employee’s incentives to employee annual assessment.
As a result, they find very little time during which they can focus fully on the enhancement of their academic prowess. I myself can only allocate less than a one third of my working hours to ponder on my ideas for research, or start brewing ideas for a new book. Usually this comes when I am already exhausted from dealing with all non-academic businesses.
So, here I am, a professor of language teaching methodology but with heaps of administrative works to be done on daily basis, I think I am becoming more adept at those matters than at my own discipline.