Equal opportunities in the postdoctoral phase in Germany?
|Baader, Meike Sophia
|Education & Educational Research; Equal opportunities; GENDER; higher education and research system; leaky pipeline; PIPELINE; postdoctoral phase
|SAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD
|EUROPEAN EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH JOURNAL
This paper discusses results of a research project on equal opportunities between women and men in the postdoctoral phase in German universities. It illustrates how the funding system is organized and whether this contributes to more equal opportunities for men and women, especially concerning the work-life interference. Although the system loses women after the doctorial phase, equal opportunity is not a core issue in the promotion of postdoctoral researchers in Germany. Instead, it tends to be addressed indirectly via an array of different compensatory support programmes. One key finding is that certain programmes, such as coaching', networking', mentoring' or financial support, are not offered everywhere, and therefore many postdoctoral researchers do not have the opportunity to utilize them. Furthermore, we found evidence of a gender-specific demand for support programmes. Another finding was that work-life interferences in scientific careers are not addressed by support programmes. The organization of everyday life is not taken into account. Given the context of uncertain career paths in Germany and the unequal working conditions of women and men in academia in Germany, it becomes clear that equal opportunities cannot be realized by ignoring the informal and gendered handling of work-life-balance.
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