More pressure from above is needed

Dhe National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina has one opinion published, which deals with the promotion of women in science. The conditions described there are well known: 52 percent of students in the first semester are female, but only 22 percent of professorships (C4/W3) are held by women. The dominance of men in scientific management positions remains almost unbroken.

This statement was long overdue, all other large scientific societies and associations in Germany have long since positioned themselves. Gender inequality is not only unfair, but also bad for Germany as a location for science, as international competition for the best minds is raging between universities and companies. If diversity is not finally promoted in a sustainable manner in this country, the country will lose its future viability. So far, so well known.

Unfortunately, the Leopoldina's statement is not a great success, but only lists the known demands: women must be promoted, empowered and made visible. After all, the statement clearly expresses: It doesn't work without pressure, more precisely: pressure "from above".

What is common practice in many places in the private sector must also apply in the academic world: Clear goals must be formulated and compliance with them demanded from the respective superiors. If the proportion of women in management positions has not increased within a certain period of time, then this must have negative consequences. The advancement of women must no longer be a cheap phrase. The goal of gender equality cannot be achieved without pressure, controls and consequences.

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