Professorship policy at the Faculty of Arts

Policy regarding professorships, Faculty of Arts

The Faculty of Arts wishes to retain and attract professors who are capable of leading particular research and education initiatives or activities in five-year MSO professorships. “MSO” stands for “with special responsibilities” in Danish. As a result, the faculty also wants to increase the number of professors working here. And finally, the faculty wants to iron out the gender inequality currently existing at professorship level.


Categories of professorship

We have two categories of professorships: ordinary and MSO professorships.
The academic qualifications required for the two categories are identical. The aim of professorships is to ensure the academic quality of our research and teaching at the highest international level. Professorships should also ensure the ongoing academic development of the subject concerned in interaction with other research and teaching environments both at Aarhus University and elsewhere (internationally). 


Ordinary professorships

Ordinary professorships are normally permanent positions which are always advertised openly with a view to ensuring the highest international standards of quality in both research and teaching. Ordinary professors are only appointed without advertising such positions in exceptional circumstances and subject to the close involvement of the department concerned.


Ordinary fixed-term professorships can be used to recruit staff for major, fixed-term research or education projects.

MSO professorships

Advertisements for MSO professorships must make it possible to deal with, improve or develop a special/new focus area of research or education for a limited period of time.

MSO professors are only appointed without advertising such positions in exceptional circumstances.

What is the role of a professor?

Professors are expected to lead the way for other staff in every respect. Here are some examples: raising the profile of specific working areas; being an active and constructive presence in the departments concerned; and taking special initiatives with regard to academic and teaching development, talent development, internationalisation and interaction with the world around us. Professors are not expected to be academic leaders of both research and education within particular subject areas; but must lead the way in terms of creating academic development and establishing a high profile both nationally and internationally, and helping to develop the department at which they are employed. Professors are also expected to assume both internal and external positions of trust. Naturally, the weight attached to these various tasks may vary over time.

Qualification profile for professors at the Faculty of Arts 

In extension of the tasks outlined above, applicants aspiring to become professors are expected to comply with high international standards within the following areas, to which various degrees of importance are attached:

·      Research, including a high academic level documented by regular academic publications, the successful attraction of external funding, assessments of academic production, and experience of research management.

·      Education, including well-documented teaching and supervision qualifications as well as active involvement in the education and study environment.

·      Talent development, including well-documented qualifications with regard to supervision, research management and involvement in the career development of junior researchers (PhD students, postdocs and assistant professors), as well as the development of PhD courses.

·      Knowledge exchange, including attracting external knowledge exchange funding/strategic research funding as well as a proactive attitude in relation to potential users of research/knowledge.

Within all these areas, professors are expected to make an active contribution to their school/faculty/university based on their experience of various positions of trust connected to national and international councils, boards, committees and working groups.