The Graduate School of Decision Sciences at the University of Konstanz embraces the position that the support and promotion of a diverse and inclusive academic community is central to its academic mission. We are committed to cultivating an environment in which individuals are respected, regardless of their differences, which include, but are not limited to gender, social background, race, nationality, ethnic origin, religion, beliefs, physical ability, age or sexual orientation. We believe that research, academic study and teaching strongly benefit from the diversity of viewpoints, backgrounds and experiences of our doctoral students and faculty members. We support the view that the concept of diversity cannot be reduced to a mere tolerance of differences. Instead, the rich dimensions of diversity for our academic community must be embraced and celebrated. Our ultimate goal is to prepare our doctoral students for leading positions in an increasingly pluralist society and interdependent world.
At the Graduate School, our commitment to diversity is represented in an array of initiatives designed to promote and capitalise on diversity. These initiatives include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Our Graduate School was established as a multidisciplinary institution, in order to acquire a comprehensive understanding of decision making and its consequences. Researchers and doctoral students from six disciplines (economics, political science, psychology, computer science, sociology and statistics) have been brought together to collaborate on research in decision sciences. We believe that single-discipline research is inadequate for gaining a comprehensive understanding of decision making and its consequences. The diverse social science disciplines have to be drawn together in a multidisciplinary approach.
- In line with the recommendation of the European Commission, our Graduate School will sign a diversity charter, which states our commitment to diversity and outlines the measures to be undertaken to promote diversity and equal opportunities.
- Our recruitment policy is directed towards the promotion of diversity among our doctoral student body. To this end, various measures are taken to recruit underrepresented groups. Our current efforts particularly focus on increasing the number of female and international doctoral students.
- International doctoral students can participate in the orientation programmes of the International Office of the University of Konstanz. The orientation programmes handle the necessary formalities for settling into Constance.
- Supervisors will provide particular assistance to international doctoral students with regard to their academic work, taking into account their different educational backgrounds and possible different perspectives on academic work.
- The Graduate School’s two ombudspersons are an informal, neutral, confidential resource for doctoral students to raise questions or concerns about any aspect of their experience in the Graduate School.
- The Graduate School has various initiatives for promoting career strategies at the postdoctoral phase and job placement. For female students, the Konstanz Mentoring Programme will help to establish connections to professionals outside the academic sector.
- The Graduate School will encourage doctoral research on gender and diversity issues. In recent years, several of the School’s principal investigators and members of their working groups have worked on such topics as ethnic or gender discrimination, occupational segregation or the effects of stereotyping. The possibility for doctoral students to focus their research on gender and diversity aspects will be explicitly mentioned in the Graduate School’s advertising and recruiting materials.
- The University of Konstanz views gender equality as a key issue of a modern university and is strongly committed to achieving its aim of gender equality and family-friendliness in all areas of academia. Two main structural measures are in place. First, the University of Konstanz has subscribed to a code of practice on gender equality, which is an agreement for standards on gender equality and family orientation in ten areas of practice. Second, in the framework of the University’s equal-treatment plan, all departments have set specific quantitative targets for the participation of women at all levels.
In addition, the GSDS emphasizes the internal institutions of the University of Konstanz.