GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel, Germany


The GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel is one of the leading marine science institutions in Europe with almost one thousand employees and a yearly budget of around 72 Mio Euro. In line with the institutes’ mission, the researchers at GEOMAR investigate the ocean as a whole including the physical, chemical, biological, and geological processes in the ocean and their interaction with the seafloor and the atmosphere, using state-of the-art technology and powerful research vessels. Research is conducted worldwide in all oceans and adjacent seas. The broad spectrum of research topics studied at GEOMAR fall under the following four major research divisions:

In line with the Federal Equality Law in Germany, GEOMAR has an equal opportunities commissioner that is elected for a term of four years. The first Gender Equality Plan (GEP) of the institution runs from 2015 to 2019 and focuses on increasing the number of women in leadership and in permanent scientific positions in the long term. In this respect, the equal opportunities commissioner works closely with the Women's Executive Board (WEB), which was founded in 2013 by women in leadership positions at GEOMAR. The WEB mission is to foster a modern equal opportunity-oriented culture at GEOMAR through equal participation of men and women at all levels and to promote and encourage qualified and motivated women to stay in science. 


GEOMAR is the coordinator of the Baltic Gender project. It is also the leader of the work packages on dissemination, exploitation and communication (WP6), action management (WP7), implementation of GEPs (WP8) and ethical requirements (WP9). 



Core Team 

Prof. Dr. Katja Matthes is the coordinator of Baltic Gender and a professor in Marine Meteorology at the CAU and GEOMAR. Her research deals with decadal climate variability in particular the modelling of processes in the stratosphere-troposphere-ocean system. After completing a Marie Curie Scholarship of the EC in the USA in her early career, she retuned back to Germany to lead a junior research group at GFZ Potsdam and Freie Universität Berlin, as part of a joint appointment. During this time, she participated in two mentoring programms, the 'ProFiL Programme'of the three Berlin universities that prepares outstanding women for leadership positions in science and higher education, as well as the Helmholtz mentoring for women “Preparing for Leadership”. She first had an associate professorship at FU Berlin and since 2012 a full professorship at CAU and GEOMAR in Kiel. Katja Matthes is the founder and head of the GEOMAR Women’s Executive Board (WEB) and a member of the AcademiaNet, a German online platform to enhance the visibility of excellent women in science.
Dr. Başak Kısakürek Ibsen is the project manager of Baltic Gender. Having worked as a researcher in marine biogeochemistry in England and in Germany in her early career, she changed her career path to work as a science officer at the COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) Office of the EU in Brussels. Since her return to Germany, she has been working as a scientific assistant and coordinator in various projects at GEOMAR.
Davina Bibiella is the current project manager of Baltic Gender. She has a master’s degree in Political Science and Historical Studies. During her studies at the Kiel University and Chungnam National University in South Korea she focused on international relations and international organizations.

Dr. Hela Mehrtens is the Equal Opportunity Commissioner at GEOMAR since 2015. Being a marine meteorologist by education, she moved onto working as a scientific data manager, supporting interdisciplinary and large-scale projects in internal communication, data description, data exchange and publication.

Nikole Lorenz works for the gender equality team at GEOMAR since September 2017. Being an art historian by education, she moved on to working as a team assistant in the research division 'Oceandynamics' 
since 2015
  Ms. Jana Hentschel is the administrative and financial contact for Baltic Gender at GEOMAR.


Gender Equality Implementation Team

Representatives of the board of directors

Chair of Scientific council

Chair of Women’s Executive Board

Equal opportunity officer

Staff council