Contact

Head of Civil Service Law and Professorial Appointment Procedures, Division 1

Anne-Kathrin Friedrich

Head of Planning and Development Unit

Thorsten Schulz

Chief Administrator for Professorial Appointment Management, Division 1 (currently off duty)

Samira Sassi

In addition to dealing with all matters related to employment law, Division 1 is exclusively responsible for monitoring compliance with employment law in appointment procedures as well as handling the subsequent hiring process and appointment to a position.

 

Procedure for establishing tenure-track professorships and implementing tenure-track procedures

The "Regulations for appointing tenured professorships within a tenure-track procedure at the University of Oldenburg" govern the procedure leading to a tenured civil service appointment. They apply to fixed-term junior professors with a tenure track to W2 or W3 positions and to fixed-term W2 professors with a tenure track to W2 or W3 positions. The supplementary "Guidelines of the Presidential Board for the implementation of tenure-track procedures" contain additional information on the pertinent requirements. The following outline of the procedural steps summarises these regulations.

With its tenure-track procedure, the University of Oldenburg seeks to offer attractive career prospects especially to highly qualified young academics and to retain them at the university in the long term. By conducting a criteria-based, multi-stage procedure with the involvement of external expertise, the university aims to meet the highest standards of quality and transparency.

Filling tenure-track positions

(1) The procedure for filling junior professorships with tenure track or temporary professorships in salary scale W2 with tenure track shall be conducted in accordance with the requirements of the university's "Regulations for the appointment of professors". Please observe the procedure for filling professorships and junior professorships.

(2) The call for applications must clearly indicate the professorship's developmental nature in contrast to a lifetime appointment.

(3) As a rule, calls for application shall be published internationally in both English and German. Exceptions to this rule must be requested from the Presidential Board upon submission of the profile paper, and the call for applications included therein, for approval .

Evaluation criteria

(1) Tenure-track evaluations are based on the evaluation criteria laid out in the "Regulations for appointing tenured professorships within a tenure-track procedure at the University of Oldenburg". Drawing from six different areas, these criteria are specified in more detail in the "Guidelines of the Presidential Board for the implementation of tenure-track procedures". They must be included in the profile paper required for the professorship's approval and, in justified cases, may be supplemented or further defined by criteria specific to the professorship. This concerns substantive focal points in research and teaching which are closely associated with a professorship's profile (especially junior professorships) and which must be acquired in the course of the fixed-term phase in order to obtain the tenure-track professorship. The criteria shall be communicated to tenure-track professors in the course of the negotiations preceding acceptance of the call or appointment. They shall further form the basis for the interim evaluation as well as the tenure-track evaluation by the Evaluation Commission and the Tenure Board.

(2) The criteria in the aforementioned six different areas represent a deliberately comprehensive set, focussing on the outstanding quality of the individual's research and teaching performance. Naturally, outstanding performance is to be reviewed in a subject-specific light and confirmed by external review (e.g. by peer review procedures, highly ranked publication media, external evaluations in third-party funding procedures, etc.).

(3) On the basis of these criteria, candidates must prove that they are excellently qualified for a tenure-track professorship. Shortcomings in individual areas require an explanation. Due to different entry requirements, the criteria for junior professorships or W2 professorships with tenure track must be considered separately. This must be noted in the profile paper.

(4) In order to advise tenure-track professors in all matters related to their evaluation and to support them in their overall career development, the schools shall appoint a suitable person to act as a mentor. The mentoring relationship is subject to strict confidentiality on both sides (mentor-mentee). It is not affected by rank. Therefore, the mentor cannot be a member of the evaluation committee or the Tenure Board at the same time. Further information can be found in the "Guidelines for implementing mentoring for tenure-track professors". Accepting a mentoring offer is voluntary for tenure-track professors and can be declined without giving any reasons.

Initiating tenure-track procedures for junior professorships including interim evaluations pursuant to section 30 (4) NHG

(1) A two-stage evaluation procedure is provided for junior professorships with tenure track. The first evaluation (interim evaluation) shall take place in the third year of employment as a junior professor, which is initially limited to three years, in accordance with section 30 (4) NHG. It forms the basis for an extension of the employment contract by a further three years if the individual's performance in research and teaching justifies this. The interim evaluation is carried out in accordance with the current version of the "Guidelines of the Presidential Board for the interim evaluation of junior professorships (with and without tenure track)". The interim evaluation is based on the evaluation criteria specified in the school's request for a junior professorship's approval by the Presidential Board. A positive interim evaluation is a prerequisite for applying for the tenure-track evaluation. The interim evaluation of junior professorships is overseen by the Research and Transfer Department.

(2) Upon the junior professor's initiative, and at least one year before the position's fixed term expires, the school shall submit an application to the Presidential Board to initiate the tenure-track evaluation and to obtain the Board's consent to the evaluation committee. The school is responsible for carrying out the procedure. The result of the evaluation should be available at least six months before the end of the fixed-term period.

Initiating tenure-track procedures for W2 professorships

(1) In the case of temporary W2 professorships, professors shall submit an interim report to the Dean's Office in the first quarter of the third year of the fixed-term contract, based on the evaluation criteria specified in the school's request for a W2 professorship's approval by the Presidential Board. The interim statement for W2 professorships rmust be prepared in accordance with the self-assessment template for the tenure-track evaluation (see "Guidelines of the Presidential Board for the implementation of tenure-track procedures"). Based on the interim report, the Dean or a person appointed by the Dean conducts a structured status discussion, which is intended to help identify possible undesirable developments early on as well as to facilitate reflection on achievements and progress. A brief record of the discussion shall be prepared and made available to the Presidential Board.

(2) Upon initiative of the W2 professor, and at least one year before the fixed term expires, the school shall submit an application to the Presidential Board to initiate the tenure-track evaluation and to obtain the Board's consent to the evaluation committee. The school is responsible for carrying out the procedure. The result of the evaluation should be available at least six months before the end of the fixed-term period.

Evaluation committee for tenure-track evaluations

(1) For tenure-track evaluations, a committee shall be elected by the Faculty Council and established in agreement with the Presidential Board. The evaluation committee shall have the same structure as an appointment committee. The provisions of the university's regulations for the appointment of professorships shall be observed.

(2) A member of the university's professorial staff chairs the evaluation committee. The chairperson shall direct the procedure and report to the school as well as the Presidential Board. He/she shall be responsible for adhering to the timetable.

(3) All persons involved in the procedure are bound by absolute confidentiality, including and in particular towards the candidate (see "Declaration on secrecy and data protection with regard to the use of applicants' documents in electronic form" and "Declaration on secrecy and data protection with regard to the use of applicants' documents").

(4) The members of the evaluation committee must submit a disclosure of working relationships (see current "Recommendations of the Presidential Board at the Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg for avoiding conflicts of interest in the appointment procedure"). If an apparent conflict of interest arises, the committee's chairperson must be notified immediately. The committee shall decide on a conflict of interest in the absence of the affected member. Circumstances giving rise to an apparent conflict of interest and the decisions of the committee in this regard shall be recorded. Any member of the committee may declare a personal conflict of interest without giving reasons.

(5) With regard to conducting committee meetings, the procedural rules for appointment and selection committees apply in accordance with the university's regulations for the appointment of professorships.

(6) The evaluation committee shall submit a reasoned proposal on the tenure-track procedure's outcome in the form of a written report. The report shall include a description and assessment of the evaluation criteria's fulfilment, an assessment of the professorship's and the subject's further development with regard to the evaluation criteria, and a recommendation as to whether the candidate should be appointed to a tenured professorship. The exact structure of the report can be found in the "Guidelines of the Presidential Board for the implementation of tenure-track procedures".

Tenure Board of the University of Oldenburg

(1) In the interest of quality assurance, research performance is also evaluated by an independent panel of experts. The members of the Tenure Board shall be appointed by the Presidential Chair in agreement with the Senate and the Central Equal Opportunities Officer for a period of five years. The term of office may be extended once for a period of five years.

(2) The Tenure Board shall consist of two external, internationally renowned scientists from each of the research clusters 'Mathematics, Computer Science, Natural Sciences and Technology', 'Humanities' and 'Social Sciences'. 50% of the members must be female. Members of the Tenure Board cannot be members of an evaluation committee at the same time.

(3) The Tenure Board shall be chaired by a Vice-President without voting rights. If the chair is unable to attend, he/she shall be represented by another member of the Presidential Board.

(4) As a rule, the meetings of the Tenure Board shall take place twice a year if tenure-track decisions are pending.

(5) The members of the Tenure Board are bound by confidentiality. They must submit a disclosure of working relationships (see current "Recommendations of the Presidential Board at the Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg for avoiding conflicts of interest in the appointment procedure"). If an apparent conflict of interest arises, the committee's chairperson must be notified immediately. The Tenure Board shall decide on a conflict of interest in the absence of the affected member. Circumstances giving rise to an apparent conflict of interest and the decisions of the Board in this regard shall be recorded. Any member of the Board may declare a personal conflict of interest without giving reasons.

(6) The Tenure Board shall establish rules of procedure for the conduct of its meetings.

Conducting tenure-track evaluations for junior professorships and W2 professorships

Tenure-track evaluations are carried out by an evaluation committee and by the Tenure Board of the University of Oldenburg.

Role of the evaluation committee

(1) The evaluation committee evaluates the qualifications in research and teaching based on the evaluation criteria defined in the profile paper, which was approved during the application procedure for the tenure-track professorship. For this purpose, the candidate must submit a self-assessment. The self-assessment shall be drawn up in accordance with the "Guidelines of the Presidential Board for the implementation of tenure-track procedures"

(2) The candidate takes part in regular teaching evaluations and external evaluations, if applicable. Based on the self-assessment (teaching) and the teaching evaluation results, the respective Dean of Studies submits a report including a recommendation. Suggestions for guiding questions can be found in the "Guidelines of the Presidential Board for the implementation of tenure-track procedures"

(3) The committee invites the candidate to give a lecture to the members of the university community on a topic of his or her choice followed by a discussion.

(4) Before the decision on the evaluation recommendation is taken, the candidate is usually invited to a hearing and a discussion with the evaluation committee.

(5) Based on the self-assessment, the statement of the Dean of Studies, the expert reports, the presentation and the hearing, the committee prepares a reasoned proposal for the outcome of the tenure-track procedure for the Faculty Council in the form of a written report.

(6) The evaluation committee submits the proposal to the Faculty Council for a resolution.

Role of the Tenure Board of the University of Oldenburg

1) Research achievements are also evaluated by the Tenure Board of the University of Oldenburg. The Tenure Board must obtain two or three external expert reports on the activities and results of the candidate's research. The evaluation committee may propose four to five reviewers via the Dean. The reviewers must be provided with the candidate's self-assessment, the evaluation criteria and questions set out in the"Guidelines of the Presidential Board for the implementation of tenure-track procedures" They must submit a disclosure of working relationships. A deadline may be set for the reviewers to submit their report. The Tenure Board provides the expert reports to the evaluation committee.

(2) The Tenure Board submits a statement to the Dean's Office and the Presidential Board based on the candidate's self-assessment and the expert reports. This statement includes a description and critical evaluation of the research as well as an assessment of the further development of the professorship and the subject with regard to the evaluation criteria. The statement also contains a recommendation as to whether the junior professor or professor should be appointed to a tenured professorship.

Evaluation decision

(1) The school's recommendation should be based on the evaluation committee's proposal as well as the Tenure Board's opinion. In order to make the schools' recommendations as uniform as possible, and thus comparable, they should be structured as follows:

  1. Summary (main results, recommendations) and conclusion
  2. Report of the evaluation committtee including minutes of meetings
  3. Statement of the Tenure Board
  4. Resolution of the Faculty Council granting or denying tenure track

If there is a disagreement between the evaluation committee's proposal and the Tenure Board's opinion, the Faculty Council must decide on the basis of extensive consultation, providing comprehensive reasons for the decision.

(2) The Faculty Council shall decide on the evaluation by a majority, as in an appointment procedure.

(2) The Dean forwards the proposal to the Presidential Board.

(3) After the Senate and the Central Equal Opportunities Officer have issued their statements, the Presidential Board makes the final decision on the proposal regarding the outcome of the tenure-track procedure.

(4) If the outcome of the tenure-track procedure is positive, the Presidential Board reports to the Ministry, which shall make the decision to appoint the professorship without a call for applications.

Overview of the tenure track evaluation procedure

Procedural step

Responsibility

Time frame (until end of fixed-term employment contract)

Application for initiation of the evaluation procedure upon submission of the self-report

 

Candidate to Dean

13 months

Election of the TT evaluation committee to initiate the tenure-track procedure

 

Faculty Council

13 months

School applies to the Presidential Board for initiation of the tenure-track evaluation procedure, including obtaining the Board's consent to the evaluation committee

 

Dean

12 months[1]

Evaluation committee takes up its work (at least 2 meetings): evaluation of the self-report, evaluation of the Dean of Studies' report, inviting the candidates to a publicly held lecture and subsequent evaluation, candidate hearing and discussion before the evaluation committee, preparation of a proposal on the outcome of the TT procedure.

 

Evaluation committee

11 months

Tenure Board evaluates the TT candidates' research performance: agreeing on experts and considering the Dean's proposals (circular procedure possible), obtaining 2-3 external evaluations (deadlines possible), evaluation of the reports, drafting a statement on the TT procedure's outcome.

 

Tenure board

Statement of the school based on the Tenure Board's opinion and the evaluation committee's proposal.

 

Faculty Council

7 months

Forwarding the overall proposal to the Presidential Board

 

Dean

7 months

Opinion of the Senate and the Central Equal Opportunities Officer

 

Senate and Central Equal Opportunities Officer

6 months

Decision of the Presidential Board

 

Presidential Board

6 months

In the event of a positive outcome: Presidential Board reports to the MWK

 

Presidential Board

6 months

Decision by the MWK to fill the professorship without call for applications.

 

MWK

5 months

Appointment of the candidate to a tenured professorship

 

Presidential Board

as soon as possible


[1] The procedure should be initiated at least one year before the fixed term of the tenure-track professorship expires. This is the latest possible point in time. Earlier initiation is certainly possible. In any case, the procedure should be implemented as swiftly as laid out in this timetable.

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