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▷ Listening instead of governing / Comment by Joachim Fahrun on the resignation of …


26.10.2021 – 19:56

BERLIN MORGENPOST

Berlin (ots)

In short: It is a flaw on the otherwise brilliant balance sheet of the outgoing Berlin Senator for Science Michael Müller (SPD). While the overall performance of the governing mayor is at least controversial, the magnificently thriving scientific landscape was seen as an essential contribution to the positive development of the city. If a renowned science manager like Sabine Kunst resigns as President of the Humboldt University out of frustration over the course of the red-red-green coalition, it is a warning sign. Especially since other university presidents share the criticism, even if they do not draw such drastic conclusions.

The full comment: There is a flaw on the otherwise brilliant balance sheet of the outgoing Berlin Senator for Science Michael Müller (SPD). While the overall performance of the governing mayor is at least controversial, the magnificently thriving scientific landscape was seen as an essential contribution to the positive development of the city.

If a renowned science manager like Sabine Kunst resigns as President of the Humboldt University out of frustration over the course of the red-red-green coalition, it is a warning sign. Especially since other university presidents share the criticism, even if they do not draw such drastic conclusions.

As is so often the case in Berlin, the dispute is also about communication, treatment on an equal footing, and listening to practitioners. Hardly anyone can contradict the intention behind the controversial paragraph of the new higher education law. It is a problem when academics with a doctorate or habilitation have to work their way from one year contract to another and from project to project. The effort for funding applications would be better invested in research and teaching. Offering permanent positions to the few hundred people this affects in Berlin would certainly not overburden the universities in principle.

At the same time, the universities want to maintain flexibility without top-level science functioning poorly. You want to be able to quickly set new accents in terms of content and prevent people from settling in comfortably in permanent positions. There must be a compromise between the two legitimate concerns. The old and new coalition partners must urgently include this in the higher education law.

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