For the first time, enrolled doctoral students are eligible to participate in the University Senate elections as an own voting block. Four representatives for the University Senate will be elected in the period from June 4th to June 6th.
Doctoral students who are employed at the university had the possibilty to choose in which voting block they wanted to cast their vote until April 30th. Those who did not declare their decision to vote as doctoral students by this date will participate as Academic Employees.
The Senate elections for enrolled doctoral students are conducted as postal vote. The ballots will be send around in May.
Every doctoral student has four votes and can distribute these among the candidates. The ballots must be sent back to the electoral office by June 6th.
In 2019, there is one list of candidates and the elections take place as a majority election: the candidates winning the highest numbers of votes are elected. In this case, only one vote per candidate can be given.
With the amendment of the University State Law (Landeshochschulgesetz) effective since March 30th, 2018, doctoral students became an independent status group at the universities in Baden-Wuerttemberg implying the right to vote in university boards.
The Basic Statute (Grundordnung) of Heidelberg University was adapted accordingly in the beginning of 2019. Consequently, doctoral students received four seats in the Senate, the highest decision-making body of the university. Besides students, Academic Employees and non-academic employees, which all have four seats in the Senate, doctoral students now constitute the fourth non-professorial status group of the University Senate. In total, the Senate has 39 members which are allowed to vote.