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Who we are? - We are the DocTeam!

You are new in Jülich? You have a problem and no one can help you? You want to meet new people besides your colleagues in your institute? Then you are at the right place!

We, the DocTeam, are an interdisciplinary group of doctoral researchers that deals with all kind of work besides science. Our main task is to represent the interests of all doctoral researchers, Master and Bachelor students within the research center Jülich. Therefore, we are active in several committees and participating in multiple projects. Besides the political work we are organizing several events, e.g. a big soccer tournament in summer, meetings with members of the board (called Aktuelle Stunde) as well as a career orientation event at which former doctoral researchers come back and tell us about ther career path after they left the research center.

Officially we are represented by four elected spokespersons. Two of them represent us internally, meaning within the FZJ, while the other two represent us on the Helmholtz level and meet with other representatives of other Helmholtz centers (here you can find an overview of all the other Helmholtz centers). They are also called HeJus, standing for Helmholtz Juniors. Every six month two new representatives will be elected for one year, one for each group (internal and HeJus), to have always a group of one oldie and one newbie.

And here they are!

Our oldies: 11/2016-11/2017

Marion Henkel

"I am Marion Dostal, doctoral researcher at the institute of energy and climate research (IEK-4). I started my PhD in autumn 2015 in fusion physics. The aim is to understand heat transport processes in the outer plasma edge, to optimize future fusion power plants. Since November 2016 I am part of the DocTeam and responsible for the DocTeam working groups related to “events & social. This includes events like the DocAssembly to give the doctoral researchers a voice by electing representatives, events like Jobs4Docs to show different carrier paths after a PhD and help you to find your way and also events like the soccer tournament to bring people together and establish new contacts."


Jannis Ehrlich (HeJu)

"I am a doctoral researcher working on a cooperative project between the institute of solid state physics at the RWTH Aachen and the PGI-1 in Jülich. I joined the DocTeam in spring 2016 and helped to organize the NextGen @Helmholtz conference in Brunswick. Motivated through the insights in the structure and discussions with individual docs from all Helmholtz centers I want to improve the situation for doctoral researchers by having exchange with the other Helmholtz centers to set up common goals and standards for the doctoral researchers in Jülich. In addition, as a part of the HeJu event group I want to help the doctoral researchers to generate inter disciplinary networks through the NextGen@Helmholtz conference."


Our newbies: 05/2017-05/2018

Nora Bittner

Nora BittnerHeJu Nora

"Hi, I am Nora. I am a psychologist and I'm working at the Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine (INM-1) since two years. I'm an active member of the DocTeam since more than one year and e.g. engaged in the work concerning the DocPlattform. I think it's important to keep track of the doctoral researchers' situation at FZJ e.g. concerning supervision standards, working conditions and the amount of vacation days. Therefore, I would like to be a speaker and to officially represent the docs here in the centre!"



Jörg Ackermann

Jörg AckermannDocTeam speaker Jörg

"Hey, my name is Jörg. After studying chemistry at RWTH Aachen, I did my Master Thesis at IEK-9 and since mid of January 2017 I am a doctoral guest researcher at this institute. I am employed at RWTH Aachen, where I am involved in teaching. I've been in contact with the DocTeam for roughly half a year, and during this time I got to know how many doctoral researchers at FZJ can push forward if they unite behind shared goals. For the next year, I would like to help guiding the DocTeam's work to secure the progress made and to further improve the working conditions for Docs, but for other students in their Bachelor or Master Thesis as well. Therefore, I am applying to represent the DocTeam as one of the official speakers!"


In order to get in contact with us write an email via or come to our monthly meeting in the gegenüber - every first Wednesday in the month at 12:30 pm.

Maybe you are wondering now, who is electing these spokespersons? Each institute determines a delegate from among their peers, who is then authorized to vote in the DocAssembly the new speakers.

Okay, now you know how we get our representatives, but these are just four people! Alone, they never would be able to cope all the work, such as attending several meetings of different committees per month, perform public relation work, organize various events, improve our working conditions, just to name a few. Here, all the voluntary doctoral researchers (and sometimes also master students) come into play who support the speakers and take over some of the tasks. At the moment, we are a solid team of about 25 to 30 Docs who work frequently on current topics. In addition, there are many people who join us spontaneously whenever they have time. This makes us also a very flexible and dynamical team with no strict structure which is a very efficient way to get things done.

DocTeam Structure