The German Data Forum (RatSWD) is a council which acts as an interface between data production, science and politics. Its tasks are the strategic further development of the research infrastructure in the empirical social, behavioural and economic sciences and the representation of the interests of data users and data producers through scientific policy advice. The RatSWD consists of twenty members: Ten representatives of empirical research and ten representatives of important data-producing institutions. It is made up of an equal number of women and men.
The representatives of empirical research are elected by the scientific community at each appointment period. The representatives of data production are not elected but appointed by virtue of their office. Finally, all members of the RatSWD are formally appointed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research in agreement with the other federal ministries.
The appointment period of the Council is three years and always begins on the 1st of July. The current appointment period started on the 1st of July 2023 and ends 30th of June 2026.
People with a doctorate who work at a university or an institution of independent scientific research in Germany are eligible to vote. This requirement applies to the right to vote (active suffrage) as well to standing as a candidate (passive suffrage). The specialist societies listed in §5 of the election regulatioare entitled to nominate one suitable representative each in accordance with the requirements of the Federal Appointment Act. In addition, at least ten academics eligible to vote may support an independent nomination. In the case of an independent election proposal, the names of the supporters will be published for the sake of transparency.
The entire appointment process, including the election, ensures a broad basis of legitimacy for the RatSWD by the scientific community and by data production.
The next election of the representatives of empirical research will prospectively start at the beginning of 2026.
The office of the RatSWD is responsible for conducting the election. If you have any questions or problems, please do not hesitate to contact us.
German Data Forum (RatSWD)
Contact person: Dorina Hackmann (Tel.: +49 30 25491-826)