Advancement of equal opportunity in research

A successful equal opportunity strategy creates a tremendous amount of added value: equal opportunity impacts research quality as a broader spectrum of talent becomes available …]
DFG Research-Oriented Standards on Gender Equality (FOGS), 2008

Gender consulting is an information and consultation service for researchers in planned and existing joint research projects provided by the Office for Equal Opportunity and Family Affairs.

Our goal is to support research projects as they apply for external funding by creating individualised equal opportunity concepts. Our team provides information, advice and support services during all project phases:

Project phaseOur servicesOur objectives
Draft / full proposalIntegrating the University of Konstanz’s overall equal opportunity strategy into the planned research project while customising the strategy to fit the requirements of the joint research project.Creating a concept which includes structural and individualised measures
On-site evaluationImplementing the concept, presenting the measuresAssisting the joint research project on-site (in a plenum, with a poster)
During the funding periodProviding individualised measures and services for researchers, monitoring the funding for the Gender Equality Measures module (DFG), etc.Providing advice on and support with central, project-overreaching services, creating customised services, events, etc.

Gender Consulting

Advancing equal opportunity in research

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Equal opportunity as a foundation for successful funding applications
National and international funding institutions (DFG, MWK, BMBF, EU Horizon2020) require research projects to have equal opportunity concepts which go above and beyond generally accepted standards. Gender equity is a decisive criteria for having funding proposals approved.

Gender consulting - our strategic way of advancing equal opportunity in research
In 2012, the University of Konstanz created the field of “gender consulting” as one of the measures stated in its Code of Practice on Gender Equality as well as in its equal opportunity plan (2014-2018) in order to firmly establish equal opportunity in research.

Our gender consulting services are externally funded as all joint research projects at the University of Konstanz are involved.

Connecting resources and ideas

Throughout the university...
The coordinators at the Office for Equal Opportunity and Family Affairs connect university management and research, activate and utilise synergies with other divisions and have, over time, developed strong working partnerships across the university (Academic Staff Development, Research Support, Zukunftskolleg).

For example: We develop tailor-made workshops and professional training for researchers in collaboration with Academic Staff Development.

We stay in close contact with both joint research projects and external funding institutions and can therefore provide you with up-to-date information and know how in the field of equal opportunity and diversity.

...and beyond!
Additionally, our gender-equity consulting team actively networks (with other equal opportunity professionals) in the national Netzwerk GenderConsulting in Forschungsverbünden (network for gender-equity consulting in joint research projects) to assure the highest quality of services. In October 2017, Dr. Sandra Weimer became the network's spokesperson.

Achieving high ratings

Reaching the highest possible level:
“In the view of the working group, the University of Konstanz is performing at stage four of the implementation phase, i.e. an already successfully established concept continues to be followed and built upon using other innovative approaches” (DFG position on the implementation of FOGS, June 2013).

In 2014, the annual FOGS reporting process was replaced by a double reporting method. Since then, all funding applications for joint research projects are required to provide specific details on the participating female researchers and their respective qualification levels. In addition, each department as well as the entire university collects and reports information about the participation of women at different academic qualification levels. The universities will thus be evaluated on the basis of the overall university gender balance.

In 2017, the members of the DFG have renewed their self-commitment to the "Research-Oriented Standards on Gender Equality" (FOGS). 

A study by the DFG from 2017 regarding implementation and impact of the FOGS has shown positive effects on equal opportunities in the German science system, which will be used as a basis to built on in future. The reporting procedure will be revised as well as part of the renewal of the self-commitment.

Our services and measures

“Zeiträume für die Forschung” for scientists working in joint research projects with family duties or in special circumstances

Kids & Co. - child care for business travel, conferences and periods of continuing education

Family Flex - Flexible short-term / emergency support for scientists with family duties or in special circumstances

MEiN - Mentoring with Experts and international Networking

Please visit the MEiN web site...

Our special programmes for women and families

Event modules for research associations


Topics are for example:

  • Team dynamics
  • Intercultural team cooperation
  • Leading successfully
  • Conflict management

Career Lunches

In order to promote and support female junior scientists a female leader in science / senior scientist reports about her scientific career paths thus acting as a female role model.

Her main research lies within the research area of the joint research project.

Career lunches can be implemented in your general activities (e.g. lecture series with invited speakers).

Networking Lunch for female scientists

Gender consulting and SFB's female scientists are meeting for a networking lunch for professional exchange and an update on gender consultant activities.