The Federal Government-Länder Programme

The Joint Federal Government-Länder Tenure-Track Programme will result in the first ever widespread introduction of tenure-track professorships at German universities and higher education institutions.

Das Tenure-Track-Programm
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This will make the journey towards a lifelong professorship more transparent and predictable for many young academics since the only condition associated for the transition to a professorship is the successful completion of a tenure evaluation. The clearly defined time period for the tenure phase also means that junior academics will gain certainty about their permanent position in the academic system much earlier than has previously been the case.

Scope of Funding

The goal is to fund a total of 1,000 tenure-track professorships by 2032. The Federal Government is making a total of up to one billion euros available for this programme from 2017 onwards. The 1,000 new government-funded tenure-track professorships are to remain in place permanently. As such, they will be available to generations of young academics and will strengthen Germany’s academic system as a whole.

Structural Reforms

Tenure-track professorships are being introduced with the aim of changing the culture at German universities by establishing and consolidating an additional career path that leads to a professorship. However, the programme also has a broader focus. For example, it aims to encourage the enhancement of HR structures for the entire academic workforce at German universities – including career paths that are not associated with professorships. Through the programme, the Federal Government and the Länder are also seeking to make long-term improvements in the areas of equal opportunities and the reconciliation of family and work life.

Duration and Procedure

The Federal Government-Länder Programme is due to run for a total of 15 years (2017–2032) and is being implemented though two approval rounds. The first round was successfully concluded in 2017. A total of 468 professorships were granted at 34 universities (an overview can be found here). The project term for all approved projects officially began on 1 December 2017.

The anticipated schedule for the second approval round is:

  • Beginning of May 2018: publication of the funding guideline
  • 8 May 2018: information event for applicants in Berlin
  • 31 January 2019: deadline for the submission of applications to the project management organisation by the scientific authority of the respective federal state
  • Beginning/middle of September 2019: selection meeting
  • 1 December 2019: funding commences

More information about the general conditions for the funding can be found here.