Shaping change: This is what drives us at Forschungszentrum Jülich. As a member of the Helmholtz Association, we conduct research into the possibilities of a digitized society, a climate-friendly energy system, and a bio-based economy. We work on behalf of all people and therefore assume responsibility for ensuring that the findings of our researchers can be applied to benefit a diverse society.
Recruiting and retaining people from a variety of backgrounds and life experiences is an important prerequisite for success in our work. We seek to attract creative individuals who love to think in unconventional ways: thinkers who are excited about bringing forward our missions. We believe that excellence is fostered when diverse voices and perspectives come together. Further, we believe that innovative thoughts come to light in a climate of mutual respect and collegiality, where people are willing to question themselves and to learn from one another.
We want our employees – in all areas and functions – to feel they are essential to our professional community. We want them to feel safe and supported, because we are convinced that it is only under these conditions that excellence can be pursued.
In a world where our differences bring us further apart, committing to diversity and inclusion should be more than a statement. Diversity and inclusion are continuous commitments that require willingness to recognize our shortcomings and willingness to change at all levels within our organization. Today more than ever we strive to embody the openness, fairness and cooperation that should be guiding values for the scientific community as a whole.
Our Diversity and Inclusion Journey
For many years, FZJ has offered services to support our diverse employee community. Our resources for caretakers and parents include remote work and flex-time arrangements, as well as an on-campus kindergarten in Jülich. International Advisory services and cross-cultural trainings are some of the offerings available to our international and culturally diverse community. Our resources for the promotion of well-being and belonging include counseling services, employee networks, and change of name policies. Further, trainings, assessment matrices and individualized consultations are available to our managers to ensure bias-free hiring processes.
We understand diversity as the richness that emerges from our collective differences: be it differences that pertain our disciplines and fields of expertise or differences that stem from our lives and experiences. We recognize that our employees, with their individual stories and identities, might have had access to different opportunities and might be affected by systemic disadvantages that impact their well-being, opportunities, and sense of belonging.
At Forschungszentrum Jülich we like to think about inclusion as a conscious act that requires constant commitment, openness, and high degrees of awareness. It means committing to cultivate excellence by making our policies and processes as bias-free as possible to allow true talent to emerge. But it also means recognizing the essential need for our research to identify and incorporate the unique needs of a diverse society to shape change for a more equitable future.
FZJ 2025 D&I Action Plan
In August 2020, the Board of Directors approved a project aimed at developing and implementing a diversity and inclusion strategy for Forschungszentrum Jülich. The five priorities below form the primary structure of our plan for advancing diversity, equity and Inclusion within our organization. More detailed information can be found in our 2025 Action Plan (PDF).
FZJ 2022-2025 Gender Equality Plan
FZJ’s mission is to effectively contribute to solving the grand challenges facing society and thus to help shape change. In this regard, FZJ has a particular responsibility to ensure that women are equally involved in shaping this change and that the research findings can be equally utilized by all genders. The promotion of women in science and in leadership positions is therefore an important strategic goal that we will aim to achieve using tailored measures in five specific fields of action. Download our Gender Equality Plan (PDF compact or PDF detailed document) to learn more about our goals and activities.
By signing the Diversity Charter in 2021, the Center joined a network of German organizations committed to promoting diversity, equity and inclusion.
The Center has joined the APS-IDEA Network in 2020. The purpose of the network is to support physics departments, laboratories, and research organizations in developing and implementing strategies aimed at improving diversity, equity, and inclusion.