Numerous organisations provide funding for research. We provide an overview of funding opportunities on our websites to help you navigate the funding landscape in Germany, Europe and around the world.
There is a wide range of internal grants for researchers at the University of Konstanz, too. These internal grants aim at improving the working conditions at the university, supporting research and teaching, and helping postdoctoral and senior members of the university to prepare major research projects.
External funding opportunities
These are the most important funding agencies.
German Research Foundation (DFG)
The German Research Foundation (DFG) funds research projects from all disciplines. To this end, it offers a wide range of different programmes:
- Research Grants: funding of research projects for up to three years
- Temporary Positionsfor Principal Investigators: funding of your own position within the research grant programme
- Scientific Networks: promoting scientific exchange for junior researchers
- Research Fellowships: enabling junior researchers to carry out a research project abroad for 3-24 months
- Emmy Noether Programme: funding of junior research groups for six years
- Heisenberg Programme: preparing for a professorship
- Reinhart Kosellek Projects: funding of high-risk projects
- Coordinated Programmes: Collaborative Research Centres, Research Units, Research Training Groups
Proposals can be submitted any time. If you plan to apply for a coordinated programme, please contact Research Support early in the process.
Federal ministries, most importantly the Federal Ministy of Education and Research (BMBF) support innovative projects and research ideas through targeted funding programmes on specific topics. The main objective is to finance the development of new ideas and technologies. Open calls for proposal can be found on the website of the Federal Funding Advisory Service (German only). Please contact us if you need any help with translations.
The Research Support further provides some guidelines for submitting proposals to the BMBF.
The European Commission provides funding for different European policy areas such as research, education, social issues, culture, or structural development. We provide an overview of EU funding here.
Horizon 2020, the European Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, offers numerous opportunities for funding research projects. Calls are published in the Funding and Tenders Portal. Please pay attention to our guidelines for submitting proposals to the EU as well.
Education programmes and inter-university cooperation projects are funded in the Erasmus+ programme. Please visit our information page on Erasmus+.
Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts Baden-Württemberg (MWK)
The Baden-Württemberg Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts (MWK) supports research and teaching at universities in Baden-Württemberg. Of particular interest to junior researchers are the Margarethe von Wrangell Habilitation Programme for Women and the Schlieben-Lange Programme for female researchers with children. Further, the Ministry provides start-up funding for EU projects. Usually, the university is the applicant for these programmes, thus make sure to contact the Research Support early if you are interested in applying.
The MWK has closed its Junior Professor Programme with the 2016 call.
German Academic Exchance Service (DAAD)
The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) supports the international exchange of students and scholars. Its funding programmes range from congress participation to research stays abroad and guest professorships. The DAAD supports both German nationals planning to go abroad and foreign nationals planning to come to Germany.
A number of foundations support research projects and researchers on a range of topics. The major foundations in Germany are:
- Alexander von Humboldt Foundation: funds research stays for international researchers in Germany and for Germans abroad
- Baden-Württemberg Foundation: provides funding for junior researchers of all disciplines as well as call-specific research and teaching projects
- Carl Zeiss Foundation: funds top-down collaborative research projects and research infrastructure mainly in the natural and life sciences (the funding line for early stage researchers was discontinued with the 2017 call)
- Fazit Foundation: provides stipends for earning habilitations (a post-doctoral qualification) as well as travel grants and publication subsidies for young researchers of all disciplines
- Fritz Thyssen Foundation: funds research projects, conferences, stipends, travel grants, publication and library subsidies mainly for the humanities and social sciences
- Gerda Henkel Foundation: supports historical humanities research through funding of research projects, travel grants, stipends, conferences and publication subsidies
- Volkswagen Foundation: provides funding for the humanities and social sciences by funding research projects, symposia and fellowships with a focus on especially innovative ideas
Please also see our general suggestions for applying to foundations.
International funding agencies
If you are planning to apply for project funding with an US organisation, please note that submitting such a proposal requires a great deal of administrative work. The University of Konstanz is registered on different platforms (grants.gov, SAM, eRA Commons) which are usually used for submitting applications to public US-American funding institutions. Please contact the Research Support if you are interested in submitting a proposal with an US-American institution.
Databases for finding funding opportunities
The following databases can help you search for funding sources. Please note that some of them are available in German only.
- ELFI database
- Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft
- Bundesverband Deutscher Stiftungen
- Förderdatenbank des Bundes
- Funding and Tenders Portal of the European Commission
- DAAD - Database for Germans planning to go abroad
- DAAD - Database for funding opportunities in Germany
- KISSWIN - Information and consulting for academic careers
- EURAXESS Germany
- Forschungsnachrichten, the newsletter of the Research Support