The passage of the Berlin Higher Education Act (Hochschulgesetz) of October 12, 1990, introduced the Women’s Council (Frauenrat) as a central elected body (Art. 59 Para. 8 in connection with Art. 3 Para. 3 BerlHG) whose members are elected every two years by the female members of the university, in accordance with their status group. The members of the Women’s Council elect the Chief Gender Equality Officer every four years, and every two years they also elect the Chief Gender Equality Officer’s two substitutes. The Women’s Council, the only body at this university with equal representation for members of the faculty, staff, and students, also recommends candidates for the Margherita von Brentano Award, which is granted annually by the university management of Freie Universität.
In accordance with the Guidelines on the Promotion of Women (Frauenförderrichtlinien), the Women’s Council supports the Chief Gender Equality Officer in the performance of her tasks, such as consulting on and development of measures aimed to promote and support women and research into women’s and gender studies, consulting on and taking official positions on current issues of university policy, and planning and implementation of events and projects.
In addition to the Women’s Council, which is the central electoral body, there are also local women’s councils that perform similar tasks at Freie Universität, on the level of the departments, central institutes, and central services.