Types of Procedures for Appointing New Professors

Through the various legal frameworks, the Austrian legislator has provided universities with a wide range of options, allowing them to respond to different needs in a targeted manner. The different types of procedures for appointing new professors are described below:


Section 98 Universities' Act

Appointment procedures according to § 98 UG are the "classical" appointment procedures. These chairs are usually filled for an unlimited period. Only in special cases, e.g. in the case of endowed professorships, is there provision for a fixed term.

Each position is advertised nationally and internationally.

In the development plan of the University of Innsbruck (§ 98 Abs. 1 UG), the precise areas of the professorships to be filled on a permanent basis as well as those to be filled for more than three years must be specified.

Once the position has been approved, the University Senate defines an appointment committee. This committee reviews the applications submitted and forwards them (excluding those that are manifestly unsuitable) to mainly external experts. On the basis of these reviews, the candidates are selected and invited to a personal presentation (lecture and hearing). They are also given the opportunity to present themselves to the faculty on site.

Based on the reviews, the faculty's comments and the personal presentation, the appointment committee prepares an appointment proposal.

If it includes the most suitable candidates (usually three), the rector makes the selection decision and invites the candidate to negotiate the terms and conditions of employment. Negotiations conclude with a formal offer of appointment, which, if accepted, is followed by the final step, the employment contract.

Section 99 (1) Universities' Act

Professorships in accordance with § 99 (1) UG are filled on a temporary basis for a maximum of five years in an abbreviated procedure. They are also advertised nationally and internationally.
The rector makes her/his decision based on a proposal by, or after consultation with, the professors of the faculty concerned.
The appointment may be renewed only after the procedure laid down in section 98 of the Universities' Act has been followed.

Section 99 (4) Universities' Act

The appointment procedure under section § 99 (4) UG is addressed to university lecturers and associate professors of the own university. The number of positions to be opened for this type of chair is specified in the development plan. The positions are to be announced in the university's official journal.

More detailed provisions on this type of procedure are laid down in a separate section of the Senate Statutes:

Section 99a Universities' Act

Professorships according to § 99a UG are also abbreviated appointment procedures "for the purpose of proactively recruiting academically or artistically outstanding personalities" (§ 99a Abs. 1 UG). A specification of the chair’s field in the development plan is therefore not required.

The number of positions in accordance with § 99a UG must not exceed 5% of the § 98 UG professorships provided for in the development plan.

Professorships in accordance with § 99a UG are opened by the rector after consulting the professors of the faculty, with a duration of a maximum of six years. An unlimited extension is possible after a qualifying examination has been carried out.

More detailed provisions on this type of procedure are set out in a separate section of the Senate's Statutes:

Section 99 (5-7) Universities' Act (Tenure-Track)

A tenure-track position according to § 99 (5-7) UG makes an academic career at the University of Innsbruck possible, from a post-doc career position to a permanent university professorship according to § 99 (4) UG.

The "classic" career path towards an associate professorship involves starting with a postdoctoral position, where a qualification agreement (typically a habilitation) is proposed in the first year. Only after signing this agreement, the person is promoted to "Assistant Professor". And once the agreed qualification steps are fulfilled, the position is extended for an unlimited period of time and the holder is qualified to use the title "Associate Professor" (Clause 27 Collective Bargaining Agreement for Universities).

In contrast, on a tenure-track position the successful applicant concludes a qualification agreement upon taking up the position and therefore starts the position already as an "Assistant Professor". Once the qualification agreement has been fulfilled, the position is also extended for an unlimited period of time and the holder of the position is qualified to use the title "Associate Professor" (Clause 27 Collective Bargaining Agreement for Universities).

In addition, in the case of a tenure-track position, the university confirms already in the call for applications that, subsequent to the fulfilment of the qualification agreement and the employment requirements, a professorship in accordance with § 99 (4) UG will be opened for which the Associate Professor can apply.

Endowed Professorships

Endowed professorships are one way of specifically supporting research and teaching at the University of Innsbruck. They are funded by companies, private individuals, foundations and public institutions. Endowed professorships are generally announced as § 98 UG or § 99 (1) UG procedures.

General information on establishing an endowed professorship can be found in the Code of Conduct.

Legal Basis

To access all relevant information, please consult our overview of the legal basis.

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