The University of Zurich encourages the faculties to step up their efforts to invite outstanding women visiting professors.
The UZH aims to achieve a balanced representation of the genders in all university functions and committees and wants to significantly increase the proportion of female professors in particular. In this vein, the Verena Meyer visiting professors are role models for early-career researchers at UZH.
From 1 January 2023 to 31 December 2026 the faculties may appoint a woman academic as Verena Meyer visiting professor. The program adheres to the UZH’s general guidelines for visiting professorships. The Executive Board provides each faculty with up to CHF 90,000 for their Verena Meyer visiting professorship. Unused funds are forfeited.
Visiting professors are to be fully involved in research and teaching at UZH. In addition, each visiting professor must hold a public lecture on her research during her time at UZH and is also expected to participate in a framework program that increases her visibility as a role model for early-career researchers and provides networking opportunities with the latter.
The visiting professors usually spend 2 - 6 months at UZH. The salary is determined individually within the framework of the salary classes and standards applicable to professors*. The aforementioned funding made available by the Executive Board is intended to cover salary (including social security employer contributions) and the framework program. Supplementary funding for the visiting professorship by the faculty concerned may be necessary and desirable.
Prof. Verena Meyer (1929 – 2018) studied and received her Ph.D. in physics from the University of Zurich. As a postdoc, she subsequently spent time in Minnesota, USA, before returning to «her» institute in Zurich as a lecturer in 1960, where she became professor of experimental nuclear physics two years later. She remained with the institute until her retirement in 1994.
As a professor, Verena Meyer held several academic leadership positions. She served as dean of her faculty from 1976 - 1978 and was later appointed the first woman president of the University of Zurich (1982 - 1984). Subsequently, she served as vice president for research (1984 - 1986). Outside the University of Zurich, she actively shaped the Swiss higher education landscape before and after her retirement by serving in important functions at the Swiss National Science Foundation and at the Swiss Science Council.
The faculty selects a visiting professor according to faculty-level regulations, including an application to the Executive Board. The faculty informs the Office for Gender Equality and Diversity of their plans no later than by the submission of the application. The Professorships Department is responsible for the administrative execution of the appointments of the visiting professors.
The faculty, the visiting professor, the Gender Equality Commission UZH and the Office for Gender Equality and Diversity jointly decide on and implement the framework program.
Please note that the Verena Meyer Visiting Professorship is the third implementation of the Visiting Professorship for Women Scientists. The first and second implementations, respectively, were named after Prof. Dr. Hedi Fritz-Niggli and Prof. Dr. Inge Strauch.