Press Release No. 25 | June 28, 2023

Four New Members of the DFG Senate

General Assembly elects two female and two male researchers to central scientific body

General Assembly elects two female and two male researchers to central scientific body

The General Assembly of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) elected four new members to the Senate of the largest research funding organisation and central self-governing organisation of science and the humanities in Germany at its annual meeting in Saarbrücken on Wednesday, 28 June 2023. Nine Senate members were confirmed for a second term. The Senate is the central scientific body in which all matters of essential importance to the DFG are discussed and decided on, unless they are reserved for the Joint Committee. Of the four newly filled Senate seats, one is in the humanities and social sciences, one in engineering sciences, one in the natural sciences and one in the life sciences.

The following four members were newly elected to the DFG Senate and will take up their du-ties on 1 January 2024:

  • Non-European Cultures: Professor Dr. Barbara Mittler, Heidelberg University
  • Electrical Engineering and Information Technology: Professor Dr. Christian Rehtanz, TU Dort-mund
  • Experimental Physics: Professor Dr. Marius Grundmann, Leipzig University
  • Neurosciences: Professor Dr. Susanne Schoch-McGovern, University of Bonn

The following were elected for a second term of office:

  • Atmospheric Science, Oceanography and Climate Research: Professor Dr. Michael Schulz, Univer-sity of Bremen
  • Development and Cell Biology: Professor Dr. Christoph Englert, Jena University
  • Educational Research: Professor Dr. Petra Stanat, HU Berlin
  • Geosciences of the Earth’s Surface: Professor Dr. Brigitta Schütt, FU Berlin
  • Mathematics: Professor Dr. Katrin Tent, University of Münster
  • Plant Sciences: Professor Dr. Andreas Weber, Düsseldorf University
  • Production Sciences: Professor Dr.-Ing. Marion Merklein, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg
  • Psychology: Professor Dr. Brigitte Röder, Universität Hamburg
  • Zoology: Professor Dr. Susanne Foitzik, Mainz University

On 31 December 2023, the following members will retire from the Senate:

  • Non-European Cultures: Professor Dr. Ursula Rao, University Halle-Wittenberg
  • Electrical Engineering and Information Technology: Professor Dr.-Ing. Gerhard Fettweis, TU Dresden
  • Experimental Physics: Professor Dr. Ulrike Woggon, TU Berlin
  • Neurosciences: Professor Dr. Gereon R. Fink, University of Cologne

The Senate is responsible for all major decisions in research funding in the run-up to concrete funding decisions as well as for all major decisions regarding the organisation of the review, evaluation and decision-making process. It also decides which review boards are to be formed and how these are to be structured.

The Senate has a total of 39 members. Of these, 36 are elected by the General Assembly based on a rolling system; they are also the scientific members of the Joint Committee. In addition, the Presidents of the German Rectors’ Conference, the Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities and the Max Planck Society are members of the Senate by virtue of their office.

Further information

Media contact:

  • DFG Press and Public Relations
    Tel. +49 228 885-2109

A list of the members of the Senate and further information is available at:

All press releases relating to the 2023 annual meeting are also available in a digital press folder which is supplemented on an ongoing basis at: