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“United in Diversity” – winning film by Joachim Krysl in the student competition Picturing Diversity of TU Graz

Diversity needs a fertile soil to be able to blossom.

TU Graz actively supports a culture of diversity and appreciation, where equal opportunities are a reality. The university uses clear guidelines and decisive action to fight discrimination. This is the only way to make sure that each individual can develop their potential and contribute to innovation, teaching and research.

Gender Equality Report 2022/23

The Gender Equality Report of Graz University of Technology prepares statistical data on the composition of the university and maps developments in studies, employee groups and decision-making bodies according to various diversity categories. The first report (2022/23) focuses on gender. An even more detailed version for internal use is available on TU4U.

Gender Equality Report 2022/23 (in German)

If you get too close, you go too far!

Sexual harassment is still a taboo subject about which there is still a lot of ignorance. In our online info portal on sexual harassment and sexualised violence you will find extensive information and possibilities for action to break the taboo and promote a culture of respect at the university.

Visions and Important Information

The promotion of diversity and equal opportunities at TU Graz is based on  

  • the Mission Statement
    which describes the vision and mission of TU Graz - what does TU Graz stand for? What are its aims?
  • Main Principles
    provide a guideline to help managers with day-to-day personnel management
  • a Basic understanding of Diversity
  • a code of conduct (Compliance Directive)
    explains the general behaviour principles for law-abiding and ethical behaviour on the part of all employees
  • the Action Plan for the Advancement of Women establishes measures to increase the proportion of women in all categories and levels where they are underrepresented
  • the Affirmative Action Plan contains measures to promote equal rights, balancing work and family life, and to counteract discrimination. 

TU Graz works to ensure that these principles are implemented, inspired in part by the university’s unconventional founder, Archduke Johann.

What does Archduke Johann have to do with diversity?

Archduke Johann, who was born in Florence in 1782 and died in Graz in 1859, laid the foundation for TU Graz with his mineral collection. He was well known for his open and just approach and dedicated his whole life to modernisation. In society and politics as well as in economics and technology. No wonder that he is reflected in the fundamental concept of diversity at TU Graz.


With its focus on encouraging the development of competences, on family and women, and on diversity management, TU Graz aims to be an attractive employer and educational institution.

See also  

Basic Understanding of Diversity

TU Graz has extended its main principles to include a reference to diversity:
In the spirit of our founder, Archduke Johann, we see openness and difference as important values at TU Graz. Different experiences and diverse ways of thinking drive creativity and innovation. Our employees, students and graduates inspire us personally and as a whole, in terms of welfare, equal treatment and sustainability. They also represent these values all over the world.

Equal Opportunities for All

Equal opportunities do not mean that everyone is treated the same – each individual has different needs. TU Graz is constantly developing provisions that establish equal opportunities for all these different people and support them in living the life they want to lead. Particular safeguards are required to make equal opportunities a reality.

The Working Group for Equal Opportunity works to protect the following groups from discrimination:
  • Students at TU Graz
  • People applying for positions at TU Graz
  • Employees at TU Graz

Some differences matter more than others. Some differences are innate, some arise. Common to all is that they depend on the context.

Provisions and Contact

The Working Group for Equal Opportunity is there for anyone who wants to discuss or act against discrimination on the grounds of factors referred to in the core dimensions. Together, you decide which steps should be taken, if any. Interventions are only made if explicitly agreed upon with the affected person. You will be given confidential advice in person and free of charge - the advice is provided anonymously.

Further information on the tasks and provisions of the Working Group for Equal Opportunity.

If you have any questions about discrimination on the grounds of disability or physical and physiological capabilities, please contact the TU Graz Representative for People with Disabilities directly.

Core Dimensions of Diversity

To make diversity easier to understand, it is divided into dimensions. Some dimensions cannot be changed or are difficult to change. According to the principle of equal treatment (in German: Gleichbehandlungsgebot), no one may be discriminated against on the basis of these core dimensions:

  • Age
  • Disability or physical and physiological capabilities
  • Ethnic origin
  • Gender
  • Religion and belief
  • Sexual orientation

Student Competition "Diversity in Pictures"

In 2015, TU Graz organised the diversity in pictures competition: 72 contributions – drawings, collages, comics, graphics, photos and short films – were submitted on the subject of diversity in general and on the 6 core dimensions. The winning contributions can be seen on this page in the following sections.

Equality of all genders

As an educational institution and employer, TU Graz wants to address all people equally and irrespective of their gender. To achieve this, structural inequalities in terms of gender must be specifically reduced, the proportion of women increased and more than two genders addressed. Measures will be taken in the area of junior researchers' promotion, HR development and in the provision of infrastructure. Equal pay and opportunities for career development as well as the consideration of individual living situations are further important principles.

TU Graz organises

  • provisions for young women and girls to encourage them to study at TU Graz, see Advisory Services for Prospective Students
  • for women students and scientists at TU Graz to support them in planning their careers, see Advancement of Women in Academia
  • for students and employees at TU Graz to make it easier to combine studying or a career with family life, e.g. by providing childcare, see Services for Employees and Services for Students
  • for expectant fathers to take advantage of the "Papamonat" and parental leave.
  • for transgender, intergender and non-binary TU Graz employees, students and guests: There are ten publicly accessible, barrier-free all-gender toilets, some equipped with changing tables.
Jo-Hannah Mayer, Christoph Erkinger 1st place at the students' competition: Picturing Diversity, category Gender

Gender Roles

(Subconscious) gender roles affect not only degree choice but also recognition of talents. Complex personal plans, e.g. combining work with family life, make it difficult to develop a career in academia. Stays abroad can become a structural barrier to people with care responsibilities.

Due to prevailing gender roles, women are still underrepresented in many areas of technology and science and need to be targeted with measures to compensate for disadvantages.

Leaky Pipeline

Men and women are still not equally represented in technology and the natural sciences. At TU Graz, 26 % of students are women and 8.6 % of professors are women (source: Performance Agreement of TU Graz 2019). This phenomenon, whereby the proportion of women decreases higher up the career ladder, is known as the leaky pipeline. In order to counteract this trend, TU Graz offers highly qualified scientists the option to habilitate by means of a qualification agreement, see Advancement of Women in Academia. This measure has already increased the proportion of women in Tenure Track-professorships to 30% (source: Intellectual Capital Report 2019).

Positive effects of equal rights

There are many positive effects of equal rights for all genders as well as of equal development opportunities. All contribute ideas of high scientific quality. When men and women work together, the potential for innovation increases. Different educational backgrounds and experiences are essential for obtaining new insights.

Gender-neutral Language and Images

The Rectorate at TU Graz wants to address all genders – including transgender, intergender and non-binary people – equally in its publications and notifications. This is therefore made visible using language and images. Employees and students are encouraged to follow the university’s example. To help with this, there is a chapter dedicated to gender-sensitive writing in the corporate wording.

Further information

An Accessible University

People with a disability are rather disabled by environmental factors then by their bodies. For this reason, TU Graz works hard to create a university that is as accessible as possible. This applies to study and working conditions, construction, IT and websites. Equally, it is important to remove the barriers in people’s minds.

TU Graz
  • promotes the inclusion of people with disabilities, different physical and psychological capabilities as well as chronic diseases on an individual basis – if you need advice please get in touch.
  • supports students and employees in acquiring the necessary help.
  • provides information on possible subsidies.
  • provides accessible parking spaces if necessary.
  • places importance on “responsive” web design.
Michael Holzmann 1st place at the students' competition: Picturing Diversity, category Disability or physical/psychological skills


  • Service Point for Accessible Learning
    The service point provides advice for students with disabilities and/or chronic diseases, and their relatives, before, during and after their degree. Lectures can also contact this service point for support in meeting their students’ needs.
  • Accessible Working
    Accessible Working is a service point for current and future employees with disabilities and mental and/or chronic illnesses.
  • The Representative for People with Disabilities represents the interests of employees with disabilities and/or chronic diseases. He/she also advises job applicants and young people applying for summer internships.
    Further information: Specific Services for Employees
  • Accessible entrances can be found on all maps on TUGRAZonline.

Important Information

In the summer and winter semester, the Faculty of Architecture offers courses on barrier-free building in the catalogue of electives.
Lena Gappmaier 1st place at the students' competition: Picturing Diversity, category Ethnic affiliation


TU Graz

  • has created a Welcome Center as a central advice and service point for international employees, guests and degree seeking students.
  • supports dual career couples with career design at the Dual Career Service.
  • promotes the mobility of students and staff.
  • offers students and employees numerous courses on languages, developing intercultural competences and academic writing in English.
  • develops English language degree programmes – there are already numerous Master' Degree Programmes taught in English.
  • provides teachers with support in teaching in English: Courses on Teaching in English, coaching and advice, proofreading service for course materials.

Diversity as a Factor for Innovation in research and teaching

Different experiences and diverse ways of thinking drive creativity and innovation at TU Graz, see also  the Basic Understanding of Diversity.

TU Graz

  • supports researchers by increasing the innovative potential of their research: Aspects of diversity are identified and integrated into research projects.
  • gives lecturers the opportunity to design their courses in diversity-aware ways, so that more students can successfully complete their studies at TU Graz.
  • offers students financial incentives to write their thesis in diversity-aware ways.

Clara Hamann, participant at the students' competition: Picturing Diversity, in the category Diversity: specifically and in general

TU Graz Offers

  • Handbook for diversity awareness in research for TU Graz researchers
  • Platform for gender and diversity aware research: TU Graz and Med Uni Graz have provided practical examples for researchers at both universities. Go to platform
  • Individual advice for researchers at TU Graz on identifying and integrating diversity aspects in research projects
  • Relevant documents for research proposals at EU level
  • Handbook for diversity awareness in teaching for TU Graz teaching staff
  • Diversity Award for TU Graz researchers, teaching staff and students

Handbook for Diversity-aware Research

In order to provide impulses for the development of new, outstanding, diversity-conscious results in technology and the natural sciences, TU Graz has published the handbook Taking diversity in research projects into account. How to make it work. for all phases of a research project.

The handbook offers suggestions for all those whose research relates to people or living matter or is used by target groups that differ in many aspects (such as education, age, origin, gender, etc.) In six chapters, guiding questions are used to identify and integrate possible aspects of diversity and thus achieve more innovative research results – for example, by defining new variables or developing methods and incorporating them into publications.

The handbook is available as

The printed version of the handbook is bilingual (German/English) and invites you to use it:

  • There are free note fields and a poster as a working document to visualise ideas and to illustrate your own project.
  • 18 concrete examples from the fields of technology and science are also available online (English and German)
  • References to literature, explanations and explanations of terms round off the offer.

Handbook on Diversity in Teaching

Students have diverse talents, but also different educational backgrounds, language skills and educational experiences. The handbook Diversity in Teaching. How to make it work offers teachers the possibility to identify relevant diversity aspects of the participants and to take them into account methodically. Concrete examples for different teaching formats as well as recommendations from teachers at TU Graz complement the handbook.

The handbook is available in German and English as a print version and as an e-book from the Verlag der TU Graz.

Certificate for Key Competencies "Gender and Diversity"

The certificate for key competencies "Gender and Diversity" for students at TU Graz promotes gender and diversity competencies as essential future competencies for research and development at universities, business and society. It integrates courses aimed at interaction and teamwork, taking into account protection against discrimination in terms of age, gender, ideology and other social factors. The certificate is open to students of all fields of study at Graz University of Technology, it is interdisciplinary and includes links to all studies at Graz University of Technology. 

More information under: Key Competencies

Gender Equality Plan

Relevant documents for research proposals at EU level

In order to apply for EU research funds within the framework of Horizon Europe calls for proposals, TU Graz must provide public proof of a Gender Equality Plan (GEP) as of 1 January 2022.

TU Graz fulfils the requirements of Horizon Europe through a large number of plans and measures, which are briefly summarised in the Gender Equality Plan for a better overview. TU Graz researchers can refer to this in their Horizon Europe applications, find further information on the intranet TU4U and seek support at the Research & Technology House for further questions.

Gender and Diversity Sensitivity Training for Scientists

In cooperation with the Gender Workshop Graz, TU Graz has developed the course “Gender and Diversity Skills for Scientists at TU Graz”. The course is held in German.

Please find more information on the course on the German website.

Differences matter.

Mind_the Gap

Diversity Award for including human factors in engineering and science

TU Graz promotes studies of topics related to human factors in technology and natural sciences and helps to raise their visibility. To do this and to mark International Women’s Day, five prizes of 750 to 1500 euros (for teams) each are awarded for relevant work every year.

Students and employees of TU Graz can enter the competition for the prizes alone or in a team. There are no limits as to the topics of the work submitted. The entries are evaluated in terms of the quality with which they discuss, consider and/or integrate gender and diversity aspects (such as gender, age, culture, language, experience, physical abilities, etc.). The prizes are awarded for theses and publications, conference contributions, teaching content and/or methods and non-scientific projects to promote diversity in research and teaching.

Students and employees of TU Graz can find further details on the prize and the call for entries in the Intranet TU4U.

Diversity Award 2024

  • Entry period begins: 8 March 2024
  • Entry period ends: 28 September 2024
  • For work done in the period: September 2023 to September 2024


Office for Gender Equality and Equal Opportunity
Mandellstraße 5/I
8010 Graz
Phone: +43 316 873 6090

Office of the Working Group for Equal Opportunity
Mandellstraße 5/I
8010 Graz
Phone: +43 316 873 6094

Award Winners 2022

Conference lecture and discussion RADECS Women in Engineering Event
by Alicja Michalowska-Forsyth, Institute of Electronics

ElectrONIX – Emplifiers – Diversity in Massive Open Online Courses
by Nikolaus Czepl, Sabrina Koffler, Michael Fuchs, Clara Scheiber and Dominik Zupan, Institute of Electronics

Research project ENARIS - Education and Awareness for Intelligent Systems
by Bettina Jeram, Manuel Menzinger, Gerald Steinbauer-Wagner and Petra Weixelbraun, Institute of Software Technology

Publication Popularity Bias in Recommender Systems
by Dominik Kowald and Emanuel Lacić, Institute of Interactive Systems and Data Science and Know Center

Explorative study “(Wen) regt Frauenfußball auf?”
by Jana Lasser and Max Pellert, Insitute of Interactive Systems and Data Science


Short summary of the award-winning works: Research and Teaching for Equal Opportunities

Award Winners 2021

Master's thesis Frauen@TUG - DO IT!
by Anna Napetschnig, Student in Advanced Material Sciences at TU Graz

Publication „Distinguished Women in Microwaves“
by Jasmin Grosinger, Institute of Microwave and Photonic Engineering

Publication „Are here any significant differences in terms of age and sex in pedestrian and cyclist accidents?”
by Christoph LEO, Corinna Klug & Ernst Tomasch, Vehicle Safety Institute

Initiative „Gender Taskforce“ (Working group and 1. Workshop)
by Team Ena Kukic, Petra Petersson, Anna Sachsenhofer and Budour Khalil, Institute of Construction and Design Principles

Conference contribution “Onsite Medical Implants Creation by Combination of Enhanced Design Methods and 3 D Printing”
by Kreis Alexander, Mario Hirz, Bernhard Walzel, Ute Schäfer, Institute of Automotive Engineering and Medical University of Graz

Diversity matters - Gender still matters

2021, most of the award-winning submissions dealt exclusively or at least partially with the diversity aspect of gender. The award-winning works thus prove that gender is a relevant factor in research and teaching, and that gender biases (gender-related inequalities and exclusions) are present in applied technology and must be researched and resolved.