Development of research and teaching staff

Academic Staff Development coordinates the university’s human resources development efforts and supports researcher and teaching staff at all career stages in gaining and improving key skills in research, teaching and management. We advise the Rectorate and all university institutions on matters of human resources development. We offer individual support and coaching, interdisciplinary seminars and workshops as well as advice on careers both in academia and outside. Our offers address the specific need of each career stage.

Academic Staff Development strategy

Our work is a core component of the university-wide staff development concept. Our concept combines both individual support solutions and structural support to the university, its institutions and management. As far as individual development is concerned, we aim to equip researchers at all career stages with the skills they need to effectively complete their current tasks and to take their career to the next level. We support careers in academia as well as careers in industry and society. Specific services are available to newly appointed professors, those pursuing an appointment and internationally mobile junior researchers.

In our work, we focus on:
Welcome and orientation
Competency development for research, teaching and management
Careers advice for academia and beyond
Strategic planning for job and career
Organising career and life in academia

We manage the various demands of human resources development by providing services which include coaching and support, workshops, information sessions and printed information resources. Our online guides address general questions about a career inside and outside academia. Information sessions provide further detail on career topics. Small to moderately sized workshops help to acquire relevant research, teaching or management skills.  Individual questions and concerns are dealt with during consultations or in coaching sessions. Our personalised services allow us to cater to the needs of individuals in widely differing life situations. We also provide structural support to the university as a whole, advising senior management as well as university departments and institutions on matters of human resources development. Regular evaluations help us to manage the quality of our services. Our Academic Staff Development team and coaches are certified professionals with hands-on experience in the higher education system. We regularly undergo advanced training and engage in professional exchange through cross-regional networks, at meetings and conferences.

Coaching and support

We provide around 500 personalised in-house support and coaching sessions per year on matters of career development, teaching and research. Themes vary but include issues such as career planning, decision making, role adaptation or change management, teaching competency development, applying for academic posts and professorships, alternative career paths and the compatibility of family and career. Depending on the matter, this support is provided in one-on-one counselling, long-term individual coaching and peer coaching, all led by our qualified academic coaches.

Professors at the University of Konstanz may rely on
strategic advice on topics like leadership, time management, committee work and teaching development.

Seminars and workshops

Every year, we offer around 70 seminars and lectures to researcher and teaching staff employed by the University of Konstanz in order to further improve their research, teaching and management skills.
Our customised services address career stage specific requirements and apply different HR instruments: dedicated information sessions, for instance, introduce the higher education system and available career paths, while seminars and workshops enable participants to put newly acquired skills into practice. The “Führung, Management, Wissenstransfer” (leadership, management, knowledge transfer) certificate fosters and documents these skills for career path inside and outside academia.

Information and orientation

Information on research careers can be found on the doctoral researcher portal, on the post-doc portal and on the new professor portal. Information on pursuing a doctorate in Konstanz is gathered online and in our “Promotion an der Universität Konstanz” (studying for a doctoral degree at the University of Konstanz) brochure. Those unfamiliar with the University of Konstanz and the German higher eduction system may benefit from attending one of our dedicated welcome talks.

Support with university structures and processes

Academic Staff Development advise university departments, joint research projects, institutions funded by the Excellence Initiative and doctoral programmes on matters of human resources development. Topics may include, but are not limited to, the recruitment of suitable candidates for working groups and institutions dedicated to advancing the careers of junior researchers, the development of new support measures for junior researchers as well as the implementation of new staff development policies and individual activities such as mentoring schemes or specific training programmes.
We lend our expertise to working groups and processes across the university including those involved in providing supervision to doctoral researchers, tenure proceedings and (respectful) appointment processes.

Advancement of newly appointed professors and university management

Recently appointed professors impact the University of Konstanz in all matters of research, teaching and management, today and in the future. The “Professur am See” (professorship by the lake) programme has been designed to see newly appointed members of staff off to a smooth start in their new role, and to impart the skills they will need to successfully support junior researchers and implement professional teaching standards. It combines general information and training in leadership and teaching techniques with coaching on how to approach the new role, meet managerial and educational targets as well as team development.  The programme encourages active exchange and networking whilst providing as much flexibility as possible. Academic Staff Development offer workshops on successful leadership to senior members of research staff. Professors and postdocs in leading positions are welcome to attend the “Führung über Mittag” (lunchtime leadership) lecture series.

Promoting diverse career paths

The University of Konstanz takes pride in supporting all its junior researchers. Therefore, since 2012, Academic Staff Development have also advised reserachers looking to pursue careers in industry or society after completing their doctorate or during the post-doctoral stage. Our activities in this area include workshops, lecture series, individual advice and coaching, also stretching to the “Führung, Management, Wissenstransfer” (leadership, management, knowledge transfer) certificate for careers both inside and outside academia as well as networking events with experts from industry and society.

Human resources development in the research support services