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Gender Equality and Academic Work in Times of Corona

The situation surrounding COVID-19 has changed the shape of our daily lives, and it’s clear that not everyone is affected by it in the same way. The circumstances are revealing and exacerbating existing inequalities, and this includes the inequalities that women face both inside and outside of academia.

Below you’ll find a collection of information and links that can serve as resources for anyone with an interest in the topic of gender equality in academia during Corona times.

Updates from the DFG

The DFG announced that contracts for doctoral candidates and academic personell in research training groups as well as collaborative research centres can be extended under certain conditions. For more information and to read about additional allowances that have been made to research alliances due to the Corona pandemic, please see the announcement from the DFG.

For the latest updates from the DFG on the situation surrounding Corona, please see this page. And for all other information, please see the DFG’s main Corona information page.

Expanding WissZeitVG

The Wissenschaftszeitvertragsgesetz (WissZeitVG) has been expanded due to the current special circumstances. The limits for academic personell that are currently in an academic qualification phase (e.g. PhD) will be extended in accordance with the duration of closures and limited operations at universities. Employment for the purposes of qualification that begins between 1 March 2020 and 30 September 2020 can be extended by a further six months.

For further information, please see this press release from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

Discrimination-sensitive online teaching and management

If you have a management position in your department, if you’re an instructor, or if you’re overseeing BA, MA or PhD theses and want to know more about how you can minimise discrimination in Corona times, please see this webpage put together by the Office for Equal Opportunities and Diversity at Universität Göttingen. There you’ll find separate collections of information for teaching and leading, as well as some general advice.

The Gender- und Technik Zentrum at the Beuth Hochschule für Technik has also put together a list of concrete tips for reducing discrimination in teaching online.

Support from the Office of the HU Central Women’s Representative

The Office of the Central Women’s Representative is available to help you with any remaining questions surrounding gender equality, research, and study. They can be reached via email at or For further information, please see here.

Further reading

If you’re interested in reading more about the ways that the Corona crisis disproportionately affects women, take a look at this page put together by bukof (the national alliance of university gender equality and equal opportunities offices). There you’ll find articles, interviews, and position papers on topics relating to gender equality and Corona. The European Institute for Gender Equality has also assembled a webpage with information on the gendered impacts of Corona.

© GeCo | 2021