The Templin Manifesto presented in 2010 was a wake-up call for German higher education and research politics. However, previous attempts of containing the nuisance of fixed-term contracts and creating reliable career paths have had a rather limited effect so far.
We shall not give up – the struggle continues. The continuity and quality of academic work requires stable employment conditions – stop the „hire and fire“ politics!
Together we stand up for …
... permanent jobs for permanent tasks in research, teaching and academic management!
We call for a proportion of at least 50 percent permanent positions among academic personnel beside (as well as) in addition to professorships. Tasks in academic management should shall be fully covered by permanent positions. In the case of fixed-term qualification contracts, we demand that the maximum period of fixed-term contracts according to the Wissenschaftszeitvertragsgesetz (Fixed-Term Academic Contracts Act) must be exhausted and, thus, a standard term of six years – in general in full-time employment – should be standardized. Teaching at higher education institutions must always be research-based – therefore, we reject positions with a high teaching load for teacher "servants" and "maidservants". Lehrbeauftragte (part-time lecturers) with permanent teaching tasks must be offered employment contracts within the scope of social insurance that correspond with their qualifications.
… a strong expansion of the basic funding of higher education institutions!
Instead of constantly new temporary programmes, competitions and pacts, we need reliable and dynamic basic funding which also accounts for the increasing number of students, the overdue improvement of student-teacher ratios, the growing requirements in terms of the quality of teaching and research, as well as cost and salary increases. We demand a 40 percent increase of the budget for the Zukunftsvertrag Studium und Lehre stärken (Future Pact Strengthening Study and Teaching), an annual increase of at least three percent and the use of the funds for permanent jobs for permanent tasks in teaching.
… equal opportunities for a successful academic career for all!
Prospects for a doctorate, a permanent position or a professorship must not be impaired by social origin, gender, sexual identity, age, disability or chronic illness, religion or belief system, ethnic origin or migrant background. We need active support for and the promotion of disadvantaged groups and an effective anti-discrimination and complaint management structure at higher education and research institutions. In order to counter the structural discrimination of women in academia, an effective gender equality policy and practice is needed, including minimum quotas at all career stages. We speak up for family-friendly and accessible structures and working conditions as well as the unrestricted application of the family policy and disability components of the Wissenschaftszeitvertragsgesetz.
... effective rights to participation for all academics!
We stand up for a democratic governance structure at higher education and research institutions which are not directed top-down by autocratic management bodies, but self-governed from the bottom-up by academics, students and administrative and technical staff. Everyone, regardless of their status, must be given the right to participate in decision-making on equal terms – including doctoral candidates and Lehrbeauftragte. We call for an extension of the scope of Personalvertretungsgesetze respectively the Betriebsverfassungsgesetz (Works Constitution) to all employees and for an expansion of the rights of staff and works councils elected by them.
...crisis-proof universities and research institutions!
No one should be at a disadvantage if work cannot be done in crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic. We call for an extension of the duration of fixed-term employment contracts, scholarships, grants and loans for the period of the pandemic-related impairments, but at least for twelve months. Online teaching and research require not only an efficient digital infrastructure, but also active support for staff and students. This includes sufficient technical support, quality continuous professional development, free access to research results and teaching materials and an appropriate crediting of online teaching against teaching duties. Higher education and research institutions must guarantee compliance with all standards of occupational safety and health protection and provide adequate equipment for mobile working and home office.
We have nothing to lose but our chain contracts, we have academia to win – and academia us!