#AktionswocheWissenschaft: Action Week around the proposed #WissZeitVG reform

After a few weeks of silence we are again drawing your attention to the proposed reform of the #WissZeitVG and the #IchBinHanna discussions in German politics and beyond. If you are new to these terms you can check out two of our earlier posts on the topic from a few weeks ago: Updates on the proposed WissZeitVG reform and Reflections on the BMBF panel discussion on future postdoc employment rules.

Now there are two good (and very timely) reasons why we publish a third post on this topic today: First, we want to make you aware about #AktionswocheWissenschaft, an action week organized by various groups representing the interests of early career academics in Germany. The action week is taking place from June 12th to 16th (more on that below). Second, and even more timely, an updated draft of the reform proposal for the WissZeitVG (“Referentenentwurf”) was released by the FDP (liberals) led ministry for science and education (BMBF) this week. Notably, the coalition partners SPD (social democrats) and the Green Party did not agree with this draft. Again there is little to no information provided in English about the proposal despite tens of thousands of international doctoral students and postdocs working in Germany. However, some summaries can be found online, as in this Twitter thread provided by N², the network of PhD students from Max-Planck, Helmholtz and Leibniz Associations:

We will try to provide updates on the developing situation. In case anything substantially changes the situation we will very likely cover it in a new blog post.

The action week #AktionswocheWissenschaft was organized to draw attention to WissZeitVG and other problems academics face in Germany. Actions are planned both online on social media as well as offline. Everyone can show solidarity at the work place and there are a variety of local events all over Germany. The Netzwerk für gute Arbeit in der Wissenschaft (Network for Decent Labour in Academia) has a starting page in English that provides many useful resources and links for this action week where you can also find local events organized near you.

N² also provides the opportunity to sign up for two online events: (1) a WissZeitVG information event with a Q&A session (13th June 2023, 13:30-14:30) and (2) a panel discussion on “Do we need a tariff for academia?” (15th June 2023, 13:00-14:00). You can sign up via this Google doc link:

We encourage everyone to get involved, connect with your fellow postdocs both locally and across Germany and to participate at least in some of the planned actions.

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