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|Region:||North Rhine Westphalia|
|Name of Organisation:||University of Cologne|
|Main implementing organisation:||Gender Equality Commissioner|
|Line of Business:||The University of Cologne is one of the most successful universities in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. Findings of the Excellence Contest have confirmed the leading position of the so-called ABC region (Aachen, Bonn and Cologne) as a location for first-rate research. The University of Cologne has an Excellence Cluster in Life Sciences. As result, Cologne is well on the way to becoming THE European centre for gerontology.|
|End Date:||Still Ongoing|
|Number of Employees||6493||49.78 %|
|Employees in R&D||1183||35.84 %|
|Number of Employees in Top Positions||60||25 %|
|Transferability of the initiative||Programme is considered to be transferable to another context|
|Type of initiative referring to strategic objectives||individual|
|gender in research|
|Type of initiative, located on the stage of career progression of women scientists||Qualification (Higher Education)|
The initiative aims at promoting excellent female young scientists’ careers at the University of Cologne. As promoting female women scientists is promoting scientific excellence, the initiative also intends to increase the percentage of high potentials in the university. Furthermore, it intends to countervail discrimination and to improve the compatibility of an academic career and parenting.
Short term objectives:
Long term objectives:
The initiative addresses the following barriers in all career stages, from bachelor until post-doc and professorship:
1. Existing incompatibility of academic career and family
2. Glass ceiling
3. Absence of female staff and expertise in certain academic fields.
The initiative is relatively new, therefore it is difficult to say whether the original objectives, especially long-term, have been or will be reached. Our goal is to achieve sustained encouragement. For that reason the first success was convincing companies, organizations and private persons to donate money. The second success was that already 14 women asked for assistance. Currently the reviews of the applications are in process.
• FVV (women’s lectures register): Booklet published each semester, including seminars and lectures organized by the gender equality commissioner of the University and various departments of the University’s faculties. It helps students organize their studies and raises awareness for gender topics and women’s advancement opportunities.
• Mentoring Programmes such as CHM (Cornelia Harte Mentoring) and CHM Pro (Cornelia Harte Mentoring Pro), address(ed) students, PhD candidates and scholars.
The initiative is aimed at all academic career- and qualification levels.
Direct target groups are:
The initiative primarily grants financial support to excellent women within the university. Excellent performances and scientific relevance are preconditions to attain the support granted by the initiative. The support measures can apply to individual women or serve to optimize the qualification phase (bachelor to post-doc) as such.
The initiative includes the following measures:
Each of these measures can be combined with another measure from the initiative, and also with other support measures provided by the gender equality commissioner, in order to fit to the individual case.
The executive board of the University of Cologne, the university’s rector’s office and the gender equality commissioner were responsible for the conducting of the initiative. The initiative was financed by the University of Cologne and donations from the ZONTA Club Cologne. On March 8th 2009 (International Women’s Day) the charitable trust’s ordinance was signed.
Financing is the main obstacle faced by the initiative. As the initiative is a charitable trust, it relies heavily on third-party donations. This makes long-term planning challenging.
Professional fundraising has to be done by the actors from the initiative in order to secure third-party donations and thus continue with its work.
Increase of the number of excellent female academics at the University of Cologne, increase of image.
The initiative has a high sustainability due to the fact that
- it aims to promote individual careers and thereby increases the quality of academic work at the University of Cologne
- women help women
- it boosts the recognition and reputation of the University among female academics and the public.
The charitable trust offers a broad range of support measures for women scientists throughout their academic career, from completion of studies to provision of equipment for research project participation to networking of excellent potentials. The different offers resemble a set of instruments aimed at different situations of women scientists. These measures can be combined with each other as well as with the measures provided by the University’s Gender Equality Commissioner.
- An own charitable trust to promote women
- Fundraising in order to help excellent women
All projects are regularly evaluated and quality checked; the scientific results will be published.
“Stiftung Frauen + Hochschulkarriere” is a good practice because it supports excellent women’s academic careers and enables the compatibility of academic career and family life. This does not only contribute to the individual’s development and success but also improves the quality of academic work at the University. Since the compatibility of career and family is a problem many women face, the initiative also promotes Cologne university’s reputation among female academics.
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