Supporting Equal Opportunities

CITEC’s overarching approach to achieving excellence in research is to support Gender Mainstreaming and Diversity Management initiatives. Since its founding in 2007, the Cluster of Excellence has pursued the following goals: 

  • Increasing the proportion of female researchers in all academic ranks and employment groups, particularly in supervisory or managerial roles.
  • Improving both structural and individual research conditions, which will help attract and retain excellent doctoral researchers and scientists at CITEC.
  • Presenting innovative perspectives for transforming gender-specific roles in science and the academe.
  • Working to help both men and women reconcile their personal and family lives with their academic careers.

Given its focus on technical systems, CITEC finds itself in an area of research that is strongly male dominated at this time. Nevertheless, our academic department serves as proof that it is possible to successfully staff research positions with a comparatively high proportion of women. Nearly 40 percent of all post-doctoral researchers at CITEC are women.

A closer look at CITEC researchers in top supervisory positions shows that seven of the 28 research groups currently working at the Cluster of Excellence are headed by women. CITEC’s commitment to promoting women in top positions is especially apparent in the research groups founded and financed by CITEC itself. During the first phase from 2007 – 2012, the Cluster established 11 new research groups. Of these 11 groups, seven were led by women – a total of about 64 percent. As such, CITEC was able to exceed the original goal it had set for itself of having women lead at least one-third of all research groups. In addition, approximately 11 percent of all Principal Investigators at the Cluster of Excellence are women.

During the first stage of funding, through 2012, CITEC focused on providing guidance and support, as well as in developing expertise in these areas. It was also involved in recruiting and promoting top young researchers, along with making funding and further training and development opportunities available to them. Therefore, CITEC developed the programmes MentScience and Bi:tasteMINT especially for female doctoral students and graduates.

During the second funding phase, CITEC is a partner in the mentoring programme movement at Bielefeld University. The programme adresses female doctoral and postdocral candidates.

More information is available online at: www.uni-bielefeld.de/mentoring/movement