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Promoting junior researchers at Münster University

Promoting junior researchers plays a key role at the University of Münster. The University offers researchers a wide range of options – such as PhDs, graduate schools, junior research groups or associate professorships – in order for them to gain additional qualifications which prepare them for an academic career. The aim is to recruit excellent researchers both from Germany and from abroad and to retain them at the University. But anyone thinking about an alternative career outside the academic world can also count on receiving advice and support. Good reasons for the Office of Communication and Public Relations to take a close, wide-ranging look at the subject of “Promoting junior researchers at Münster University”. We hope you enjoy reading the articles!

Sociologist Henning Stroers calls for more planning security and flexible offers for junior women researchers

"The conditions on the path to a professorship need to be improved for women"
<address>© Caroline Queda</address>
© Caroline Queda

Henning Stroers, the Administrative Director of the Research Centre for Family-Oriented Human Resources Policies (FFP) at Münster University, speaks about having a family and simultaneously pursuing an academic career, and about human resources policies geared to different stages of people’s lives.

Academic career: the path to a professorship

"It’s one of those strange-but-true stories from real life"
<address>© WWU - Laura Grahn</address>
© WWU - Laura Grahn

Prof. Niels Petersen has held the Chair of Public, International and European Law and Empirical Legal Research at the University of Münster since 2015. In this guest commentary he talks about his academic career. This is the third and last in a series of guest commentaries on the subjects of alternative careers outside research and the path towards a professorship at a university.

Alternative careers: moving into private industry with a PhD

"I can think outside the box and broaden my horizons, both professionally and culturally"
<address>© private source</address>
© private source

Dr. Oliver Sendscheid wrote his PhD in Münster. Since September 2016 he has been working at the US branch of the diagnostic laboratory company Euroimmun. In this guest commentary Sendscheid, a biologist, describes why he opted for private industry. This is the second of a series of three guest commentaries on the subjects of alternative careers outside research and the path towards a professorship at a university.

Alternative career paths: moving into knowledge management with a PhD

"I already knew as an undergraduate that I didn’t want to spend every day working in a lab"

Dr. Sarah Eligehausen studied biology and took her PhD in the subject. Since 2015 she has been coordinating the Experimental Medicine course of study at the University of Münster. In this guest commentary she describes her career so far. This is the first of a series of three guest commentaries on the subjects of alternative careers outside research and the path towards a professorship at a university.

Support on the way to a professorhsip

Advice on making applications, on stays abroad, and on funding programmes – there is a wide range of measures on offer to postdocs

At Münster University there are various offers and funding programmes that support postdocs on their way to becoming professors.

Two paths to a PhD

In these guest commentaries, doctoral students at Münster University talk about their work
<address>© WWU - Judith Kraft/MünsterView</address>
© WWU - Judith Kraft/MünsterView

Xiaofei Yang and Peilin Li are doctoral students at the Münster University. In their guest commentaries, they describe their everyday work as junior researchers.

"No guarantee, but a good step on the way to a professorship"

Three researchers at Münster University talk about their experiences heading a team of junior researchers

Leading a team of their own helps young researchers to become independent at an early stage. The University of Münster also has many teams of junior researchers which provide the team-leaders with an opportunity to take on responsibility early. Here we present the leaders of just three of many such teams: Dr. Lena Frischlich, Prof. Raphael Wittkowski and Dr. Anna Junker.

"Our PhD students and postdocs should get to know one another"

Münster University promotes an interdisciplinary culture among junior researchers in many different ways - here are two examples
<address>© WWU - Kathrin Nolte</address>
© WWU - Kathrin Nolte

Helping junior researchers to look beyond their own four walls in preparation for an academic career is something that the University of Münster does not only in a decentralised way – in individual faculties, with a wide range of qualification opportunities – but also across faculty borders, with numerous centralised offers of support.

Karin Hassels and Peter Eggert look after tomorrow’s chemical laboratory assistants

"Our trainees should use the opportunities they are given here"
<address>© WWU - Peter Leßmann</address>
© WWU - Peter Leßmann

In addition to providing facilities for studies and research, the University of Münster offers apprenticeships and vocational training in 19 different occupations – from gardener to IT systems technician. One example of this vocational training is that for chemical laboratory assistants at the Institute of Organic Chemistry, where the two people responsible for this training are Karin Hassels (since 2009) and Peter Eggert (since 2001).

"Promoting junior researchers": Vice-Rector Prof. Maike Tietjens on the Press Office’s new special feature

"We want to recruit the best minds"
<address>© WWU - Peter Wattendorff</address>
© WWU - Peter Wattendorff

Promoting junior researchers plays a key role at the University of Münster. The University offers researchers a wide range of options – such as PhDs, graduate schools, junior research groups or associate professorships – in order for them to gain additional qualifications which prepare them for an academic career.

"Many systems in other countries are ahead of us"

Prof. Jule Specht from the Junge Akademie on the challenges for German universities in promoting junior researchers
<address>© goldmarie design</address>
© goldmarie design

Junior researchers at universities are promoted in a variety of ways, for example through PhDs, graduate schools and associate professorships. Prof. Jule Specht, a member of the Junge Akademie in Berlin and Professor of Personality Psychology at Humboldt University Berlin, speaks about the challenges for German universities in promoting junior researchers.

Starting off well with the right support

What distinguishes the promotion of junior researchers at Münster University? A PhD student, an associate professor and a trainee give their views
<address>© privat</address>
© privat

"Anyone who spends thousands of hours at their desk doing research is not only dependent on selfless support and patience on the part of their nearest and dearest, but is also very pleased at the many forms of support available at Münster University", describes doctoral student Vít Kortus in one of the three guest contributions.