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The following comment refers to this/these guideline(s)

Guideline 5

Dimensions of performance and assessment criteria

To assess the performance of researchers, a multidimensional approach is called for; in addition to academic and scientific achievements, other aspects may be taken into consideration. Performance is assessed primarily on the basis of qualitative measures, while quantitative indicators may be incorporated into the overall assessment only with appropriate differentiation and reflection. Where provided voluntarily, individual circumstances stated in curricula vitae – as well as the categories specified in the German General Equal Treatment Act (Allgemeines Gleichbehandlungsgesetz) – are taken into account when forming a judgement.


High-quality research is oriented towards criteria specific to individual disciplines. In addition to the generation of and critical reflection on findings, other aspects of performance are taken into consideration in the evaluation process. Examples include involvement in teaching, academic self-governance, public relations, and knowledge and technology transfer; contributions to the general good of society may also be recognised. An individual’s approach to research, such as an openness to new findings and a willingness to take risks, is also considered. Appropriate allowance is made for periods of absence due to personal, family or health reasons or for prolonged training or qualification phases resulting from such periods, and for alternative career paths or similar circumstances.

Evaluation of transfer and industry-related research

In the field of engineering sciences, transfer, cooperation with companies and a potential practical application can be particularly important. These aspects are often rated highly in the engineering sciences even though they are subordinate to criteria of research quality.

In the engineering sciences it is possible to qualify not just in a purely academic setting but also by pursuing activities in business and industry. This should be taken into account when assessing CVs and academic performance.

Therefore, in addition to academic excellence, which is mainly demonstrated through publications, experience in the industrial application of technologies is often required as an appointment criterion.

Metrics can be used as a tool in evaluating publications. However, care must be taken to ensure that these are considered in context and not used as an exclusive criterion (see the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment).

The comment belongs to the following categories:

GL5 (Engineering/engineering sciences)