VS Constitutional Vote and Uni Elections on July 9-10, 2013

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What can I vote on?

On July 9-10, 2013, a vote and several elections will be held:

  • the vote on the constitution of the new VS
    The Verfasste Studierendenschaft (VS) is the new student representation that is currently being established at all universities in Baden-Württemberg. Unlike the old student representation (the AStA), the VS will have actual political power. You can vote for one of two proposals for the constitution of the VS. For more information on the proposals, see below.
  • the elections of the 4 student representatives in the Senate
    The Senate ist the leading council of the University, where all important decisions are made. It consists of several University leaders (the Rector, the Chancellor, etc.), representatives of the students, and representatives of the academic and non-academic employees.
  • the elections of the AStA, which will be replaced by the VS soon (at the very latest by the end of the year 2013).
    The AStA is the current student representation without any political power. Its areas of work used to be restricted by law to cultural, social, and sports-related issues. This law has changed recently to allow for a student representation with actual political power: the Verfasste Studierendenschaft (VS).

Where can I vote?

All students of the Philosophische Fakultät cast their vote in the Brechtbau. Voting usually takes place in the big hallway right after the main entrance - there is no way you could overlook it. Make sure to bring along your student ID card.

Briefwahl

If you're not sure you will understand the voting documents in German, use Briefwahl (voting by mail)! This means the University will send the voting documents to your home address by mail. You cast your vote at home, and mail the documents back to the University. This way, you can ask someone who speaks German for assistance before casting your vote.

Briefwahl is free of charge, but you have to request it by July 4, 2013, from
Gremienbetreuung und Wahlen
Alte Botanik
Wilhelmstr. 5
gremien ät verwaltung döt uni-tuebingen döt de

You can use the text below to write to them:

Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren,

hiermit beantrage ich Briefwahl für alle Abstimmungen und Wahlen, die am 9.-10. Juli 2013 stattfinden.
Name: (your name)
Matrikelnummer: (your matriculation number)
Adresse: (your snail-mail address)

Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
(your name)

If you send it by email, make sure to use your University email address! If you need further help, please contact us via our mailing list.

The proposals for the VS constitution

There are two proposals:

  1. "Studierendenparlament jetzt! Direkt. Demokratisch. Transparent" ("Student parliament now! Direct. Democratic. Transparent") by RCDS, Jusos, LHG, and Piraten HSG, called Proposal 1 or P1 below
  2. "Fachschaften und Grüne Hochschulgruppe für einen Studierendenrat" ("Fachschafts and GHG for a student council") by FSVV and GHG, called Proposal 2 or P2 below

Below you find an overview of the similarities and differences of these two proposals.

Organizational charts

Proposal 1

organizational chart of proposal number 1
(click on the image to enlarge it)

The original organizational chart in German can be found on the flyers in the mensa and in a presentation on the LHG's website (on page 11).

Proposal 2

organizational chart of proposal number 2
(click on the image to enlarge it)

The original organizational chart in German can be found on the flyers in the mensa and as a PDF on the FSVV's website.

Similarities

  • legislative body of students elected in university-wide elections (called "Studierendenparlament" in P1, and "Studierendenrat" in P2)
    • consists of 21 (P1) or 17 (P2) student representatives + the 4 student representatives in the Senate
    • is the students' voice on university-political issues
    • has control over the VS's budget
    • elects the executive branch
  • Arbeitskreise (permanent), Arbeitsgruppen/ Projektgruppen (temporary) for the 'practical work' in different subject matters
    • every student can participate in them
  • currently existing Fachschafts will continue to exist (called "real existierende Fachschaften" in P1, or "Fachschaftsbezirksvollversammlung" in P2)
  • council of representatives from all Fachschafts (called "Fachschaftsrat" in P1, and "Unabhängige Studierendenvertretung/ Fachschaftenvollversammlung" in P2)
  • all sessions of all bodies are open/public
  • every student has the right to make requests in the legislative body
  • budget of the VS: all students have to pay a financial contribution upon their Rückmeldung each semester

Differences

  • executive branch:
    • P1: one chairperson, five 'secretaries' for finance; press relations; Fachschafts; social issues, advice, and university groups; culture and sports
    • P2: two chairpersons, one 'secretary' for finance
    • P1: members of the executive branch can receive financial compensation for their work, up to one half of the standard Bafög rate
    • P2: all 'student politicians' are volunteers
  • P1: upper bound for students' financial contributions to VS budget
  • P1: every student also has the right to speek in the legislative body (not just to make requests)
  • P1: legislative body gives financial and non-material support to university groups and Fachschafts
  • P2: general assembly of all students decides on key issues
    • P2: votes of the general assembly are binding if at least 10% of all students voted (quorum of 10%)
  • P2: no division between FSVV as political party and FSVV as assembly of all Fachschafts

Why is everything called Fachschafts-whatever?

Yes, there are a lot of terms that contain the word Fachschaft. This is because Fachschaft officially has a different meaning than in informal use. Officially, a Fachschaft is the collection of all students of a faculty. In reality, a Fachschaft is an organization of students of one or several related majors. For example, the Fachschaft Sprachwissenschaft is an organization of students of Computational and General Linguistics.

The two proposals for the constitution of the VS have to use the legally correct language, of course. When they refer to the real-life Fachschafts, they use the terms "real existierende Fachschaft" ("really existing Fachschaft") and "Fachschaftsbezirksvollversammlung", respectively.

Unfortunately, it is forbidden to establish any decision-making bodies below the faculty level (at least according to the University's interpretation of the law). So, the real-life Fachschafts are not recognized as legal bodies and cannot make binding decisions on political issues. This is why the two proposals introduce faculty-wide or university-wide bodies called "Fachschaftsrat", "Fakultätsvertretung", and "Fachschaftenvollversammlung", which emerge from the Fachschafts. (For details, please see the organization charts.)

To editors: Purpose of this page

The purpose of this page is to:

  • inform students about the upcoming vote on the constitution of the new VS and the elections of the student representatives in the Senat and the AStA
  • explain the two proposals for the VS constitution in English and compare them
  • NOT: present the talking points of the individual Hochschulgruppen

Please keep this in mind when editing this page!