Graduierte werfen Hüte hoch

Excellent support for early career researchers

Supporting all academic career stages
Graduierte werfen Hüte hoch
Image: Arlene Knipper

Friedrich Schiller University of Jena is a pioneer in promoting early career researchers in Germany: It was one of the first universities to set up a central Graduate Academy, which does not only provide services for doctoral candidates in structured programmes, but offers guidance for all phases of the academic career – from research-oriented studies to the doctoral and postdoctoral phases to the transition to professorship.

On all these levels, the Graduate Academy has produced numerous innovations in recent years: a central “House for Early Career Researchers” has been established where doctoral researchers and postdocs not only receive services and qualification offers, but which they can also use for self-organised events. Upon a change of the University’s Constitution, doctoral researchers have been representing their interests in the University’s committees since 2012. To ensure ongoing good quality in the structured doctoral programmes, they can become members of the Graduate Academy by undergoing an evaluation process.

As part of the Excellence Initiative, an additional programme was launched to provide financial and ideational support to exceptionally talented, research-oriented students even before the start of a doctorate. The Graduate Academy is also involved in supporting the transition to professorship: all tenure-track professorships are generously endowed and are supported by a programme framework of qualification and further offers. In addition, the University of Jena coordinates a Germany-wide tenure-track network for professional exchange between universities and organizes discussion rounds and expert talks on the topic.


  • Team der Graduierten-Akademie
    Image: Anne Günther (University of Jena)
    Graduate Academy The Graduate Academy is responsible for all questions regarding academic careers. It offers support, counselling, and comprehensive service for all doctoral researchers, postdocs and their supervisors. In addition, it also develops recommendations for the future design of academic career stages.
  • View of the House for Early-Career Researchers "Zur Rosen"
    Image: Jan-Peter Kasper (University of Jena)
    House for Early Career Researchers Since 2012, the House for Early Career Researchers has been a central contact address for doctoral researchers and postdocs: Here, they can find service, counselling and qualification offers under one roof. Within the building, they will also find rooms for interdisciplinary exchange, networking, participation and representation of interests.
  • Doctoral council of University of Jena
    Image: Jan-Peter Kasper (University of Jena)
    Doctoral Council As one of the first universities in Germany, the University of Jena has established an elected representation of interests of all doctoral researchers – the Doctoral Council (DR. FSU). Since 2012, the council has been representing the interests of doctoral researchers at all levels of the university. It also organizes a wide range of events for interdisciplinary exchange.
  • Doctoral researchers in a structured programme
    Image: Graduierten-Kolleg "Economics of Innovative Change"
    Structured doctoral programmes There are four major graduate schools and more than 20 structured programmes at Friedrich Schiller University Jena. In these institutions, doctoral researchers conduct thematically focused research around a jointly supported research programme and are supervised by a team of multiple instructors. About one third of all doctoral researchers at the University of Jena conduct their doctorate within the framework of these programmes.
  • Opening event of the Honours Programme
    Image: Christoph Worsch (University of Jena)
    Honours Programme for Future Researchers Unique in Germany, the programme supports talented and research-oriented students from all disciplines. It enables them to gain in-depth insights into research processes during their studies, gives them a share in the scientific community and prepares them for an academic career. The students team up with a supervising researcher and apply with their own small research project.
  • Two tracks leading to one
    Tenure Track To increase the planability and reliability of academic careers, the University of Jena aims to permanently announce at least 15 per cent of all professorships as tenure-track professorships. All tenure-track professorships receive a basic level of academic staffing, collegial support through a mentoring programme, and access to specific qualification offers. In addition, the University of Jena coordinates a Germany-wide tenure-track network and thus advocates to establish the tenure-track professorship as a regular academic career path.

Central services for doctoral researchers and postdocs

Events for early career researchers

Welcome Event for new doctoral candidates
Welcome to the Doctorate
The Vice-President welcomes the new cohort of doctoral candidates at the "Welcome to the Doctorate" event.


Graduate Academy

House for Early Career Researchers
Johannisstr. 13
07743 Jena