Research Grants

Are you a foreign scholar planning a research trip to Germany? Would you like to find out about scholarship programs as a student in Germany? These portals will tell you all you need to know about the subject.


German Federation of Industrial Cooperative Research Associations “Otto von Guericke“

Since 1954 the German Federation of Industrial Cooperative Research Associations “Otto von Guericke“ (Arbeitsgemeinschaft industrieller Forschungsvereinigungen “Otto von Guericke“ e.V., AiF) has been funding research and development for small and medium-sized companies. It is designed as the umbrella organization for a network of business, science and state. In addition, the AiF functions as a sponsor of industrial community research and other funding programs of the Federation and the Federal States.

Beilstein Institute for the Advancement of Chemical Sciences

Information transfer for chemists: communication and knowledge exchange in the field of chemistry are top priority at the Beilstein Institute for the Advancement of Chemical Sciences (Beilstein-Institut zur Förderung der Chemischen Wissenschaften). Support is available for research projects and publications, congresses, seminars and scholarships. In addition, the site also offers one of the world’s largest fact databases in the field of organic chemistry.

DAAD – German Academic Exchange Service

This is the gateway to German higher education and a springboard into research abroad. The German Academic Exchange Service (Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst, DAAD) sponsors study and research in Germany and abroad.

German Research Council

Invest in the future: the German Research Council (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG) is the central self-administrating academic institution for the promotion of research. Aside from providing financial support for research projects in all fields, the DFG offers programs for young scientists and scholars, advises parliaments and authorities and promotes international cooperation as well as collaboration among researchers.

German Mobility Center

The job market is international for academics and scientists. Taxes, financial assistance or university structures – going on an international exchange means that you will have a lot of questions. The German Mobility Center at the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation provides information to German researchers all over the world and to guest academics at universities between Kiel in the north and Freiburg in the south.

German National Foundation

To be the first to embrace the concept of the “nation”: this was the aim of former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt and his colleagues when they founded the German National Foundation in 1993. Since then the foundation, which is based in Weimar, has been addressing issues surrounding Germany’s present and future. In addition to this, it promotes projects on the inner unity of Germany and Europe. Its patronage is assumed by each serving German President.

ELFI – Service Center for Electronic Research Funding Information

ELFI is here to help: this charming acronym stands for Germany’s central Service Center for Electronic Research Funding Information (Servicestelle für Elektronische Forschungsförderinformationen). This website provides a collection of all the information relevant to research funding, such as calls for papers, addresses of sponsors and other contacts. Users can have this information presented in a way that satisfies their own specific needs.

Exist – University-based start-ups

Young, dynamic and successful – dream or reality? EXIST is a program sponsored by the Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi), serving as a pace-setter for a “culture of entrepreneurial independence” in training, research and management at universities.

Fritz Thyssen Foundation

After World War II, the Fritz Thyssen Foundation was the only major private foundation in Germany established for the purpose of science funding. Mainly it gives grants to young scientists who have already received their doctorates.

Germany Trade & Invest

Germany is one of the world’s leading industrial nations. The country, which lies between the rivers Rhine and Oder, is situated at the centre of the continent. With its population of more than 80 million inhabitants it is the largest and most important market in the European Union (EU). The many products bearing the trademark “made in Germany” clearly document how deeply embedded the world’s long-standing export leader is in the global economy. The dense complex of transport routes, communication networks and research institutions offers companies based here a strong foundation for their national, regional and global activities.

Körber Foundation

The industrialist and philanthropist Kurt A. Körber (1902–1992) was committed to research, education and understanding among nations, as well as cultural projects. In this spirit the Körber Foundation regularly awards various grants, such as the German Students Award, which is presented every year for contributions on a pre-set topic of current social significance.

European Liaison Office of the German Research Organisations

The European Liaison Office of the German Research Organisations (Koordinierungsstelle EG der Wissenschaftsorganisationen, KoWi) is designed as a service institution for the promotion of EU research. It informs and counsels scientists at public research institutions about European funding programs. Thus it mediates between German scientists and their organizations on the one hand, and EU institutions on the other.

Leibniz Association

In science, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz eV (WGL), 89 research institutes and scientific service facilities have joined forces, to be financed under the model of the “Blue List“jointly by federal and state governments. Their interests channeled the Leibniz Association.

The Federal Government’s “Forschung und Innovation” Grants Advisory Office

The Federal Government’s “Forschung und Innovation” Grants Advisory Office is the first port of call for all questions relating to grants and subsidies for research and innovation. It advises potential applicants on how the Federal Government structures research, grants programmes and focal points – as well as on current emphases in state grants and the related initiatives.

Bund-Länder Commission for Educational Planning and Research Promotion

The German federal and Länder governments pull together in the same direction for the innovations of tomorrow: with a firm foundation on the Basic Law, the Joint Science Conference (GWK - Gemeinsame Wissenschaftskonferenz) promotes science and research on a national level. The GWK has been working in Bonn as the successor of the Federal-Länder Commission for Educational Planning and Research Promotion since 2008.

Max Planck Society

Where is our place in the universe? How are stars born? What holds the world together inside? How does culture emerge? As a complement to academic research, the Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science (Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e.V., MPG) conducts extra-university research in the natural and biological sciences and the humanities.

Research in Germany

The “Research in Germany” portal is the central information platform of the initiative to "Promote Innovation and Research in Germany" by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). Editorial responsibility for the Portal lies with the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). Here you find a wide selection of funding programmes by various funding organisations for international academics and researchers – for students, graduates, doctoral students, postdocs and senior scientists.

Endowment Association for German Research

Mediator between science and industry: the Endowment Association for German Research (Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft) provides incentives for the continuing development of research and teaching. It encourages quality in academic education and champions the autonomy of the German institutes of higher learning. The German President is the official patron of this project for the German business community.

Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities

Working together for research excellence: the Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities, also known as the Academy Union, unites seven academies in science and the humanities between Bavaria and Hamburg. The long-established umbrella organization headquartered in Berlin promotes academic exchange and young talent in a wide variety of different disciplines.

Volkswagen Foundation

The Volkswagen Foundation provides funding for pioneering research projects in all sorts of academic disciplines from Arabism to zoology. With a funding volume of approximately 100 million euros a year, it supports young academic talent, teaching and international cooperative projects. The non-profit Foundation with its headquarters in Hannover has been in existence since 1961.

Wilhelm und Else Heraeus-Stiftung (Wilhelm und Else Heraeus Foundation)

Aspects of complex materials: the Wilhelm und Else Heraeus Foundation (Wilhelm und Else Heraeus-Stiftung) sponsors research and training in the natural sciences, mainly in physics. Founded in 1963, the foundation works together closely with the German Physics Society (Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft, DPG), organizes seminars and conferences and supports students, young physicists, school projects and exchanges with Eastern European physicists.