Points of Contact for Employees
Table of Contents:
Managing Directors and Supervisor
The Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems aims to have a high influence on science and simultaneously foster a culture of openness and respect. As a coworker at MPI-IS, if you see something that is not right, or if you think we can do better, please contact the Managing Director of your local institute site, as listed below:
Wherever people come together, there will be conflicts and problems. If you find yourself in a difficult situation, you do not have to find a solution by yourself. Your supervisor is always your first point of contact when it comes to conflicts within your team or with people from other groups.
If your supervisor is involved in the conflict, or if you would generally prefer more distance and confidentiality, there are further points of contact that will provide help and advice for finding a solution, as listed below. Different points of contact are available depending on whether it is a conflict with superior, peer, or subordinate staff members, whether you feel discriminated against due to your personal situation, or if you are currently unable to perform the way you wish you could, owing to professional or private issues.
Representative of the Institute's Scientific Coworkers in the Section
The representative of the scientific coworkers participates in meetings of the Scientific Council of the Max Planck Society (MPG), and he or she makes the voice of the scientific coworkers heard at the institute and society levels. The representative of the institute’s scientific coworkers is elected for a period of three years by all scientists with a long-term contract.
Whether in daily life at the institute or in special cases, the representative is available to help coworkers communicate their concerns and ideas to the Board of Directors or the Chemistry, Physics, and Technology Section (CPTS) of the MPG's Scientific Council. The representative may not only express concerns and present ideas on behalf of the scientists but may also vote in the CPTS on key issues, including the appointments of new directors at other institutes.
The ombudsperson scheme fulfils an essential function of scientific management by offering all scientists at the institute the opportunity to receive confidential advice in cases of conflict related to integrity and good scientific practice. All employees of the institute who engage in scientific activity elect the ombudsperson for their site for a term of three years. Conversations with the ombudsperson are treated as confidential.
Regulations and further information can be found in the following resources:
Your primary contact is always the ombudsperson at your local MPI-IS site; for contact details see below. If circumstances do not support contacting this person in a specific case, the ombudsperson of the CPT Section is at your disposal; for contact details please see the MPG intranet. If you do not wish to present your case to an ombudsperson within the Max Planck Society, or if several persons from different university and non-university research institutions are involved, you may also contact the Research Ombudsperson at the DFG (German Research Foundation).
The Gender Equality Officers ensure that the standard principles of equal opportunities are put into practice. They serve as the first contact person for co-workers in all matters of professional promotion and help to eliminate any discrimination. They are involved in all personnel, organizational and social measures affecting equal opportunities for men and women, balancing of family and gainful employment, and protection against sexual harassment in the workplace.
You should contact the Gender Equality Officer of your local MPI-IS site if you believe that the general principles of gender equality in the MPG are not upheld. As an alternative, you may also contact the MPG's Central Gender Equality Officer; for contact details please see the MPG intranet. These conversations are treated as confidential.
You should also contact the Gender Equality Officers regarding matters of sexualized discrimination, harassment and violence. Furthermore, the Code of Conduct that was introduced at the beginning of 2018 highlights that the Max Planck Society does not tolerate any misconduct in this context; this document also specifies the procedure for handling conflicts in this domain.
The Works Council (Betriebsrat) is a body whose legal roles and responsibilities are defined by the Works Constitution Act (BetrVG). The members of the MPI-IS Works Council are the workforce representation of all staff members of the institute. If you contact the head or any other members of the Works Council regarding an issue you are experiencing, they are bound to confidentiality and will act only in coordination with you.
Representative for Individuals with Severe Disabilities
If you are a staff member with severe disabilities and feel discriminated against due to your status, you may contact the Representative for Individuals with Severe Disabilities at our institute. Another point of contact that is available to you is the General Representative Council for Individuals With Severe Disabilities of the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft. You can find the contact details of the Representative for Individuals with Severe Disabilities in the MPI-IS intranet pages.
Pursuant to § 98 of the Social Security Code (Sozialgesetzbuch), the Employer's Representative for Individuals with Severe Disabilities at our institute cooperates closely with the Representative for Individuals with Severe Disabilities, the Works Council and the authorities indicated in the Social Security Code. You can find the contact details of the Employer's Representative for Individuals with Severe Disabilities in the MPI-IS intranet pages.
PhD Student Representatives
The PhD Scholars of the International Max Planck Research School for Intelligent Systems (IMPRS-IS) elect one representative for each of the four sites that participate in the school (University of Tübingen, University of Stuttgart, MPI-IS in Tübingen, and MPI-IS in Stuttgart). These four students choose one of their number to represent all students in the school. This overall IMPRS-IS PhD student representative participates in the meetings of the IMPRS-IS executive board.
At our Stuttgart campus, together with the neighboring MPI for Solid State Research, the PhD students elect a team of local representatives for the Max Planck Campus in Stuttgart.
The Max Planck PhDnet is a network representing the over 4500 doctoral researchers (DR) within the MPG.
Anonymous Counseling Service through the Fürstenberg Institute
All MPG employees are eligible to take advantage of a new counseling service, called the "Employee and Manager Assistance Program" (EMAP), effective immediately. EMAP is an external, anonymous counseling service provided by the Fürstenberg Institute. The Fürstenberg Institutes are located throughout Germany with regional and local counselors available to help you 24/7, including emergencies at night, on the weekends, or during holidays.
If you require fast and anonymous support while facing a crisis that affects your work — whether professional, personal, or health-related — this service is available to you free of charge. Supervisors can use the specialist counselling service to receive ad hoc anonymous support in difficult management situations.
How does EMAP work?
Call 0800/387 78 36 from Germany or 00800/38 77 83 62 from outside the country for immediate help. Tell the operator you are calling from “MPG.” Experts are available to assist you in German or English, with other language options on request. If you wish, you can also arrange a personal counselling appointment.
According to the mediation guidelines of the MPG, every employee is entitled to apply for arbitration in the case that complaints or disputes cannot be settled at an institute. Three arbitration advisors are appointed for each section.
You can find a lot of useful information and local points of contact for various relevant topics including health support, psychological support, and relevant emergency numbers, in our MPI-IS intranet (Stuttgart campus) and on our institute Wiki (Tübingen and Stuttgart campuses).
External Legal Consultation
Victims of bullying, harassment, sexualized assault or discrimination according to the General Act on Equal Treatment (Allgemeines Gleichbehandlungsgesetz, AGG) are now also able to consult the law firm Wirsing Hass Zoller. The lawyers Dr. Christine Dross and Thomas Müller represent the law firm as confidants. The confidants will accept your information or complaints and give an assessment of whether these are likely to be legally relevant. It is up to you to decide if and to whom your report will be passed on. The confidants are bound to absolute secrecy if you wish so. They can discuss matters with you in German or in English, and you can contact them as follows:
Wirsing Hass Zoller - Rechtsanwälte Partnerschaft MbB
Maximilianstraße 35 C
Dr. Christine Dross
Phone: 089 29 00 71-28
Phone: 089 29 00 71-0
This service is initially available until the end of 2019 and is free of charge for MPG staff members.