RWTH Comes Out on Top for Equal Opportunities


RWTH Aachen is among the most successful universities in Germany when it comes to equal opportunities for women and men.


This was certified by the Leibniz Institute for Social Sciences' current university ranking of equal opportunities aspects. Earning ten of twelve possible points, RWTH, together with FU Berlin and the University of Hildesheim, topped the ranking, which evaluated 65 universities.

The Aachen university consistently improved over the past years: Ten years ago it was in 46th place with only six of 14 possible points then. The university attributes this clear improvement towards first place to four targeted measures, which were initiated by the Equal Opportunities Office, the Staff Unit: Gender und Diversity Management, the University administration, and many other actors at the University.

"I am, of course, happy about the very positive results," says RWTH equal opportunities officer Ulrike Brands-Proharam Gonzales. "At the same time, I welcome the further development of the ranking's methodology on the basis of the cascade model. This way, the actual conditions at technical universities are taken into consideration, because the actual percentage of women in the lower qualification levels in the individual fields is treated as a benchmark." RWTH got the highest marks possible in four of six areas: the percentage of women completing doctoral degrees, in post doc qualifications after doctoral degrees, among academic staff, and the increase in the percentage of female professors from 2008 to 2013. However, the ranking also revealed, according to the Brands-Proharam Gonzales, that the percentage of female professors is still low. Only a faint increase since 2008 is visible in the development of the percentage of women among academic personnel below the lifetime professorships. In these two areas, RWTH is midfield in the individual rankings. "I would tell those active in the University's equal opportunities work to take the university ranking as encouragement and confirmation of the University's equal opportunites strategy and as motivation to improve more and ensure that the attained goals are sustainable."