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Contractual framework

Doctoral researchers sign a three-year doctoral contract with Forschungszentrum Jülich.


Doctoral researchers start off on 50 % of TVöD salary grade 13 level 1, moving after one year to 50 % of salary grade 13 level 2 (TVöD = Collective Agreement for the German Civil Service). Under certain circumstances, a supplementary recruitment allowance may be paid. In addition to monthly remuneration, doctoral researchers also receive a “Christmas bonus” amounting to 60 % of normal monthly pay.

Social security

Doctoral researchers in employment are generally obliged to pay social security contributions, i.e. health insurance, insurance for long-term nursing care, contributions to a pension scheme, and unemployment insurance contributions. This also applies if they are enrolled as doctoral students at a university.

If doctoral researchers are not already insured with a health insurance company, Forschungszentrum is obliged to register them with a statutory health insurance fund. If doctoral researchers are members of another health insurance fund, they must provide Personnel Management at Human Resources (P-B, Personalbetreuung) with membership confirmation.

A social security number is also required. If doctoral researchers have not yet been issued with a social security card, Forschungszentrum Jülich will apply for it on their behalf. If they already have a card, a copy must be submitted to Personnel Management (P-B, Personalbetreuung).

Employee Payroll at Human Resources (P-V, Personalvergütung) is responsible for all issues regarding social security.

Annual leave

Doctoral researchers are entitled to annual leave in accordance with the Federal Annual Leave Act (BUrlG). This currently corresponds to 20 working days per calendar year. If employment begins in the second half of a year or ends in the first half of a year, annual leave entitlements will be divided by twelve and multiplied by the number of full months worked. In compliance with BUrlG, annual leave must be taken before 31 March of the following year or it will be forfeited.

Parental leave

Doctoral researchers are entitled to parental leave. In accordance with German legislation on fixed-term contracts (WissZeitVG §2 (5)), doctoral researchers who have a doctoral contract with Forschungszentrum Jülich are entitled to extend the term of their contract by the duration of their parental leave. Personnel Management at Human Resources (P-B, Personalbetreuung) is responsible for all issues regarding the procedure and relevant personal questions.

Research grants and secondary employment

Research grants and research scholarships may generally not be awarded to doctoral researchers in addition to remuneration specified in their contract. Secondary employment may only be undertaken if approval is granted by Forschungszentrum Jülich.