The remits and responsibilities of the vice presidents were redefined and also expanded as part of the election process with the aim of placing greater focus, in particular, on relevant interdisciplinary and future themes. For example, the Executive Board will now also focus on the themes of sustainability and academic careers. The close correlation between digitalisation processes and sustainability issues and their importance for the design of academic structures will be given greater attention in the remit “digitalisation, sustainability and infrastructure”.
By establishing the new remit “academic careers”, the aim is to illustrate the university’s special responsibility for the personal and professional development of researchers at all career stages, but especially for early career researchers. TU Darmstadt has already introduced a diverse range of measures and services to support researchers with their career development.
These changes will come into force at the beginning of the new year.
Professor Franziska Lang will take over responsibility for the new remit of Vice President for Academic Careers. She received 45 votes from the University Assembly. Lang has been a University Professor for Classical Archaeology at TU Darmstadt since 2008.
The remit of “research” will remain vacant until another election has been held by the University Assembly. It will be covered in the interim by Professor Tanja Brühl. The previous holder of this office Professor Peter Stephan retired from the Executive Board as planned.
Another new member of the Executive Board is Professor Peter Pelz, who has been a Professor of Fluid System Technologies in the Department of Mechanical Engineering since 2006. He received 46 votes. Pelz was elected as the new Vice President for Digitalisation, Sustainability and Infrastructure. Professor Herbert De Gersem, a professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, previously held this office for three years.
Professor Heribert Warzecha was re-elected to the office of Vice President for Academic Affairs and Diversity. This will be his second term of office. He received 52 votes from the members present at the University Assembly. Warzecha has taught and carried out research in the Department of Biology since 2007.
The new Vice President for Innovation and International Affairs is Professor Thomas Walther from the Department of Physics, who became a professor at TU Darmstadt in 2002. 45 members of the University Assembly voted for him. Walther succeeds Professor Jens Schneider, who will be the new Rector of TU Vienna in the future.
“As their terms of office come to an end, I would like to thank Herbert De Gersem, Jens Schneider und Peter Stephan for their huge commitment as vice presidents of TU Darmstadt”, said Professor Brühl in her thank-you speech. “The extraordinary and tireless dedication that they and all members of the Executive Board have shown over the last three years has ensured that we have been able to cope so well with multiple crises, while at the same time embarking on the strategic realignment of TU Darmstadt.” Brühl also went on to say that she was greatly looking forward to working together with her colleagues in the new Executive Board team. “The challenges we face are considerable but I am convinced that we will also overcome them together, and with the solidarity and support of the entire university.”