Our Stances

Here you can find an English summary of our published stances:

Law on fixed contracts for employment in research institutions (WissZeitVG)

The WissZeitVG is a law that allows universities and other research institutions to set time limits on employment contracts with researchers. Most doctoral researchers employed by universities or research institutions have a fixed-term contract because of this law. The Bundesverband Promovierende has written to the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) to express the specific concerns of doctoral students regarding this law.

The key demands of this letter are:

  • A standard contract period of 6 years for doctoral researchers instead of chain contracts.

  • The standard contract period must be formulated as a binding rule, not as a guideline

  • Exceptions to the rule should only be possible in agreement with a doctoral representation

  • Contract duration should be extended proportionately in the case of part-time positions

  • The term „qualification“ in the WissZeitVG must be clearly defined

  • The WissZeitVG should protect against additional workload outside the work on the qualification by guaranteeing 75% of paid working hours for own research.

The full text, in German, is available here

Employment issue for scholarship holders

Holders of BMBF-funded scholarships may have a max. 25% employment in research institutions. However, the WissZeitVG, a law that regulates the duration of employment in research, states that contracts with less than 25% are excluded from its application. This means that universities and research institutions are reluctant to employ scholarship holders, as employees with 25% regular working hours could sue against the limitation on the duration of employment.
The Initiative of Doctoral Researchers, the predecessor organisation of the Bundesverband Promovierende, sent a letter to the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in 2023 calling for a change in the rules governing its scholarships to allow scholarship holders to find jobs again.

The full text, in German, is available here .