Equality Innovation Fund

With the Equality Innovation Fund, the University of Göttingen supports projects that address subject- and/or organisation-specific challenges in the field of equal opportunities. Faculties and institutions of the University are called upon to develop approaches to solutions that, for example, support talented women to pursue a career in academia. Further project objectives include the improvement of study, working and research conditions as well as a gender-oriented organisational culture. The target group are female graduates from all age and scientific status groups, i.e. female bachelor or master students, female early career researchers and (prospective) female professors.

The central idea of the fund, which is financed by the Programme for Women Professors, is to initiate innovative projects that respond with new, experimental ideas to concrete needs for action, e.g. when

  • a discipline does not have enough female first-year students,
  • the working conditions of female doctoral students need to be improved, or
  • a brain drain of excellent female graduates takes place immediately after obtaining a doctorate.

The projects are intended to explore new territory in gender equality in selected areas of the University, especially in the natural and life sciences. Some of them are role models for other areas, others are of interest to the entire University as success models. They thus make a significant contribution to the further development of equal opportunities policy and work.

In the first round of funding, projects were launched with the following three target groups in mind: from a female student marketing project Jenseits von Dackel und Lodenmantel [Beyond Dachshund and Loden Coat] of the Faculty of Forest Sciences and Forest Ecology to a publication grant for early career female researchers from the Faculty of Geosciences and Geography to a project position to professionalise the active recruitment of women at the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences.

In the projects of the second round of funding, interdisciplinary co-operations have been concluded: The cultural anthropological short-film project "Ungehaltene Reden" [Unheld / Indignant Speeches], for example, presents the scientific careers of women in physics, economics, philosophy, history and East Asian studies in an open and approachable way. In the workshop series "Welcome to the Community", otherwise often implicit knowledge about the German science system and the special characteristics of scientific feedback culture is conveyed to international postdocs in the natural and life sciences.

In the third funding round, many projects with a focus on studies are funded: The scholarship project "Probieren geht über und Studieren" ("The proof is in the pudding – Try out studying business informatics") of the Faculty of Business and Economics aims to provide an incentive to try out the supposedly difficult course of studies of business informatics by means of scholarships. A project for female first-year students in computer science offers specialist advice, networking opportunities, information on career paths and help with navigating the uncertainties in the introductory phase of studies. A gender-sensitising key competence module for students of the Faculty of Law expands the range of modules to include a topic that is in great demand among students. One project is dedicated to "inclusive doctoral studies" and offers doctoral candidates in the social sciences with disabilities/chronic illness or care responsibilities opportunities for exchange within the framework of biographical circles and identifies hurdles and best practice examples in their careers. This is accompanied by specialist lectures and expert talks given by successful female scientists with disabilities and/or chronic illnesses.