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Federal Equal Opportunities Programme 2000–2012

The Federal Act on University Funding of 1999 introduced so-called "project-tied funding", a new form of financial assistance aimed at supporting joint cantonal and federal concerns of national significance. Projects were selected by the Swiss University Conference. The Federal Programme "Equal Opportunities for Women and Men" was launched in the year 2000.

The programme was conceived from a national perspective and included three coordinated measures modules pursuing overarching goals. It is one of the most important steps taken to date for ensuring equal opportunities at Swiss universities.

Module 1 – Financial Incentives for Appointing Female

Whereas Module 1 measures were regarded as controversial ("per capita premium"), they made the issue of "transparent, gender-sensitive appointment processes" visible within higher education policy making. The resulting "ranking" stimulated competition among Switzerland’s universities. New appointments and the overall share of female professors are still surveyed on an annual basis.

Post-2007/2008 results



Module 2 - Talent Advancement Projects

Talent advancement projects extend from subject- and target-group-specific one-to-one monitoring through peer mentoring, special mentoring in the field of medicine to gender-awareness-raising courses and lecture series, information databases, and information days for high school students at mathematics and science departments.

Mentoring projects in individual universities

Regional Mentoring-Network

Communication Platform

Lecture programmes and talks

Measures for Talent Advancement

Information about Module 2




  • Synoptic table Accepted Projects (2000-2007/08) (in German)
  • Abstracts Projects Module 2 (2004-2007, 1st call) (in German)
  • Abstracts Projects Module 2 (2004-2007, 2nd call) (in German)
  • Abstracts Projects Module 2 (2000-2003/04) (in German/French)



Module 3 - Balancing Career and Family Life in Academia

In recent years, childcare facilities have been established and expanded at all Swiss universities. Flexible childcare provision (in the case of illness, meetings, congresses) and holiday- and lunchtime provision for school-age children of university staff have also been established.

Module 3 - "Dual Career Couples" (DCC) (from 2008)

"Dual Career Couples" (DCC) are defined as couples holding higher, mostly academic qualifications and whose careers move along an upward trajectory. A far greater number of female academics live in DCC partnerships than their male peers. In view of the increasing lack of qualified scientists, it is more and more important to establish good conditions for recruiting and retaining highly qualified staff.

Highly qualified researchers are a success factor for every university. Universities become more attractive as employers if they can demonstrate that the needs of partners are taken into account in negotiating the terms and conditions of employment. DCC-friendly staff policy makes a general contribution to strengthening Switzerland as an attractive research location.

DDC measures will be continued, as required, within the university action plans drawn up for the period the 2013–2016 .



Publications Federal Equal Opportunities Programme 2000-2012/13

Evaluation Bundesprogramm Chancengleichheit von Frau und Mann an den Universitäten, 3. Phase 2008–2011 (in German)

Evaluation Bundesprogramm Chancengleichheit von Frau und Mann an Universitäten 2000-2007 (in German)

Evaluation Bundesprogramm Chancengleichheit von Frau und Mann an Universitäten 2000 bis 2003 (in German, in French)

Kennzahlen Chancengleichheit von Frauen und Männern an den Universitäten (in German)

Leitfaden für die Planung von Projekt- und Programmevaluation (in German)

Gender-Net Project

Modul 1

Wer sind die Besten - Chancengleichheit in Berufungsverfahren (in German)

Brochure «Innovation and Excellence by Women in Science»

Frauen und Männer im Bolognasystem. Indikatoren zu den geschlechtsspezifischen Unterschieden an den universitären Hochschulen (2009) (in German, in French)

Frauen und Männer an den Schweizer Hochschulen. Indikatoren zu geschlechtsspezifischen Unterschieden (2011) (in German, in French)

Modul 2

Werdegänge ehemaliger Mentees (in German with a French summary)

Getting your thesis off to a good start (guide 2014)

Beyond the doctorate. Guide for advanced doctoral and postdoctoral students (2014)

Mentoring in Medicine: Forms, Concepts and Experiences. A Report on Mentoring Programs at the University Hospital and in the Medical Faculty of the University of Zurich,  2002 – 2011

Good Practice: Chancengleichheit von Frauen und Männern an den Schweizerischen Hochschulen (in German, in French)

Mentoring-Projekte : Fallstudien (in German, in French)

Geschlechtergerechte Hochschullehre (in German/French)

Modul 3

Dual Career Couples at Swiss Universities: Evaluation of the third phase of the Swiss Federal Equal Opportunity at Universities Programme (2008-2011/12)

Flyer und Broschüren

Broschüre "Federal Equal Opportunities Programme 2000–2003" (in German, in French)

Flyer "Federal Equal Opportunities at Universities Programme 2000-2007" (in German, in French, in Italian)

Flyer «Swiss Federal Equal Opportunity at Universities Programme 2000-2011»