Equality Officers

The Faculty of Arts and Humanities, with over 8,000 students, around 200 researchers and more than 80 professors, is one of the largest faculties at Kiel University. With 18 institutes, the faculty offers a broad spectrum of subjects in humanities, cultural sciences and social sciences. The size and heterogeneous nature of the faculty represent a significant challenge to implementing the equal opportunity guidelines.

We understand gender equality to mean the elimination of existing discrimination based on gender. In the university and scientific sector, discrimination leads to a decreasing female role and increasing male role, the further the career progression. At the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Kiel University, this is reflected in the fact that women make up around 60% of undergraduate and doctoral students, but when it comes to postdoctoral studies the situation reverses, and the ratio of men jumps to two-thirds. The gap increases further when it comes to professorships, so that under 20% of professors are female and over 80% of professors are male  (Date: 01/03/2013).

The reasons for the gender disparities cannot simply be reduced to individual decisions. Rather, a successful gender equality policy requires a focus on structural and organisational mechanisms, and in particular, taking the different disciplinary cultures into consideration. Gender discrimination is associated with, amongst other things, preconceptions of what makes the “ideal scientist”, with quality standards and career structures. A further influence is the difficulty of maintaining a work-life balance, which is why we consider measures designed to promote family-friendly policies to be an important supplement to equal opportunity strategies.


With our council, committee and advisory activities, we support the Faculty of Arts and Humanities in its gender equality efforts, and strive towards open and constructive dialogue on practical methods of creating equal opportunities at the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Kiel University. An important step has already been taken, with the founding of the Equality Committee at the Faculty of Arts and Humanities in summer 2013.

The Equality Officers at the Faculty of Arts and Humanities