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Equal Opportunity

Guidelines for partnership behaviour

Here you will find information about the guideline for conduct in partnership.

Guideline for conduct in a spirit of partnership
at the Bonn-Rhine-Sieg University of Applied Sciences

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen

A trusting cooperation of all university members (students, employees) and the promotion or maintenance of a good working atmosphere should be the concern of all of us. For this reason, representatives of the Equal Opportunity Commission, the staff councils and the AStA have come together in a working group and developed these guidelines for cooperative behavior at Bonn-Rhine-Sieg University of Applied Sciences in several meetings.

I ask you to make these guidelines known to the employees and students of the university.

1. preamble

The guideline for conduct in a spirit of partnership addresses all members of the university and is intended to help them resolve conflicts fairly or prevent them from arising in the first place. The Staff Councils for academic and non-academic employees, the Representative Council for the Severely Disabled, the AStA and the Equal Opportunity Officer have agreed to this guideline.

2. scope of application

The guideline applies to all members of the Bonn-Rhine-Sieg University of Applied Sciences and extends to all university facilities. All forms of Internet use, such as participation in social networks, e-mail traffic and any other expression of opinion on the Internet, are also subject to this guideline.

3. principles

The goals of the guide are:

  • Trustful cooperation of all university members
  • Promotion and maintenance of a good working and study climate
  • Support of university members in their family responsibilities
  • Recognition and non-violent resolution of conflicts
  • Avoiding the escalation of conflicts 

Conflicts inevitably arise when people with different interests and needs repeatedly encounter each other. The functions to be performed at the university sometimes involve contradictory tasks. In such cases, the loyalties of the function holders to their tasks result in factual conflicts that must be resolved in the interests of the university. It is important to deal with each other fairly and not to let these conflicts slide into a personal level. Productive conflict management requires a creative approach to change, which is also the hallmark of a progressive corporate culture. Fair forms of conflict resolution are demanded, unfair forms of conflict resolution are to be prevented and rejected. The university is committed to an image of humanity based on fairness, respect and peaceful conflict resolution. This also includes a responsible approach to university members who have family obligations in addition to their work and studies. Fair forms of conflict resolution include open, serious, responsible, appreciative disputes that engage with the other parties involved. Unfair forms of conflict resolution include, in particular, the facts described in item 4.

4. conduct

All university employees are obligated to maintain industrial peace and contribute to a good working atmosphere. Actions and conditions that run counter to this objective must be prevented and, if they nevertheless occur, must be designated as such. This also applies to digital communication. In these cases, a staged procedure for prevention is agreed upon (see item 5). Serious offenses are, for example:

4.1 sexual harassment, such as

  • unwanted physical contact
  • suggestive gestures, remarks, comments or insults
  • Showing sexist and pornographic images
  • Solicitation of sexual acts
  • Suggestions that sexual advances may bring professional benefits

4.2. Violations of personal rights, such as

  • Defamation of university members and their families
  • spreading rumors about university employees and their families
  • Deliberate withholding of information necessary for work or deliberate disinformation 
  • Threats and humiliation
  • insults, hurtful treatment, mockery and aggressiveness, inappropriate behavior, including toward students
  • undignified treatment by superiors, such as the assignment of unsolvable, meaningless or no tasks at all

4.3. Discrimination due to

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Ancestry
  • Origin
  • Nationality
  • religion
  • sexual identity
  • physical or mental illness or disability
  • political convictions

5. Help with conflict resolution

If university members are unable to manage conflicts without help, it is strongly recommended that they seek professional assistance. Confidential contact persons are available at the following institutions:

for all university members - the "HELP" counseling center.

Other confidential points of contact in conflict situations at the university are:

For employees:

  • Staff Council
  • Equal Opportunity Officer
  • Representative for severely disabled employees
  • Confidential representatives
  • AGG Complaints Office

For students:

  • Lecturers
    Student Representatives
    Equal Opportunity Officer
    General student advisory service
    Representative for severely handicapped persons
    Representatives in all departments and divisions

For professors and lecturers

  • Equal Opportunity Officer
  • Representative for severely disabled persons
  • Trustees

for students - the Psychotherapeutic Counseling Center of the Studentenwerk Bonn AöR (Bonn Student Union)

for employees - the company social counseling at the University of Bonn

Contact details of the counseling centers

Within the scope of their possibilities and competences, these bodies have the task of:

  • follow up on all indications and complaints of harassment
  • to advise and support those affected
  • to point out possible steps and ways to solve the problem
  • if necessary, to establish the facts of the case in separate and joint discussions with the persons concerned 
  • if requested, to accompany, advise and support the persons concerned in all discussions and meetings
  • if necessary, to propose countermeasures and/or consequences within the framework of the existing procedures
  • to report in anonymous form on the quality of the violation and the results of conflict resolution to an ombudsman commission
  • if necessary, to point out possible courses of action under labor law and criminal law

6. information/ measures/ training

University employees are regularly informed about the topic of partnership-based behavior at Bonn-Rhine-Sieg University of Applied Sciences. In addition, the following measures will be introduced:

  • The university management supports training events on the topics of conflict resolution, stress management and leadership behavior
  • Recurring offers of seminars on the topics of mobbing, self-assertion, behavior as an outsider when observing violations, recognizing violations and their consequences for those affected
  • Managers should feel obliged to participate in further training measures on personnel management and conflict management
  • Inclusion of the topic in the catalog of questions for employee appraisals
  • Consideration and concrete address in company reintegration management
  • Acknowledgement by students during enrollment and uploading of the document on the USB sticks for first-year students
  • Acknowledgement by staff during recruitment
  • Inclusion of questions on the cooperative behavior in teaching

in the teaching evaluation

  • Establishment of a central ombudsman commission to which all violations of this guideline are reported in anonymous form on the quality of the violation and the results of conflict resolution

The ombudsman commission consists of representatives of the AStA, the staff councils, the personnel department, the shop stewards, a lawyer (not in-house counsel), the representative for severely disabled persons and the equal opportunity representative.

  • Annual report to the President's Office and the Senate by the Ombudsman Commission

Prof. Dr. Hartmut Ihne

President of the Bonn-Rhine-Sieg University of Applied Sciences