The academic performance of universities is largely determined by young researchers at every career level. Bielefeld University recognises that supporting the careers of its young researchers is one of its most important strategic tasks. Central to this is the idea that there are not only career paths for young researchers within the academic system but also in the economic sector and wider society.
One particular focus of our comprehensive career advice and development service is to support our young researchers in making conscious choices especially at crucial points of transition between different career stages and options. We also take into full consideration the challenges for parents and carers to reconcile family life with a career as well as promoting gender equality. Our approach to supporting young researchers is not only focussed on the individual but also the organisation as a whole: On the one hand, young researchers at the University should be offered the highest level of support to plan their career path according to their personal needs. On the other hand, by establishing itself as an attractive employer, the University can win the brightest minds on both national and international levels by offering outstanding conditions for young researchers in teaching and research.
Important elements for the support of young researchers at Bielefeld University are:
- A general initial counselling session through the Service Center for Young Researchers, which coordinates the varied, interdisciplinary services for young researchers and is presented on the the Young Researchers portal.
- Support and guidance of international researchers when changing to Bielefeld University with Welcome Center of the university.
- Support through the Bielefeld Young Researchers' Fund for students preparing for their doctoral phase, doctoral candidates in their final phase as well as postdocs in regards to mobility and skill development, third-party funding for research projects, and also to apply for a position.
- Targeted Staff Development [in German] for researchers in the qualification phase or tenure phase adapted to the continually changing conditions of the university system and oriented to the challenges faced by transitions between individual career phases.
- Drafting of contracts when employing young researchers oriented to the University's guidelines on contractual arrangements for the qualification phase: University guideline on drafting contracts for young researchers in the qualification phase [in German].