Research stays

two researchers in conversation

A research stay in Germany can last from one month to five years and is usually tied to a specific research project and a collaborating institute. It can enable you to realise your own research project at a university or a non-university research institute or be organised within the framework of an international partnership. In any event, it will increase your experience and expand your horizons. These temporary research stays receive funding – especially within the framework of international partnerships and through the award of prizes or grants.

How do I find a host institution?

Short research visits or stays by international postdoctoral scholars are basically possible at all universities and research institutions. The prerequisites are contact with the host institution and its willingness to accept the visiting researcher.

You can search for contact persons at German higher education institutions using the Higher Education Compass, the database of the German Rectors’ Conference. The large non-university research organisations also support cooperation with researchers from foreign universities and research organisations. The Max Planck Society, for example, welcomes some 6,000 visiting and junior researchers from over 50 countries as guests at its facilities every year.

Can I receive financial support for my research stay?

German institutions have a great interest in international cooperation. Stays of international researchers in Germany are funded with special research grants irrespective of whether they involve visits to a non-university research facility, a German higher education institution or a research-oriented company:

  • DAAD grants
    The DAAD funds the research stays of international researchers in Germany with grants. You will find further information in the DAAD scholarship database.
  • EU funding
    At the European level, the European Union supports the exchange of researchers with Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions.
  • Information on research funding
    Our Research Funding section offers access to the most important information about programmes and grants.
  • Initiating international collaboration
    If you would like to form a research partership with a German university or a non-university research institute, you can receive German Research Foundation (DFG) funding for a visit to Germany. However, only German cooperation partners are entitled to submit applications for such funding. This is how the DFG finances the costs of initiating international collaboration. You will also find more information on our page about international partnerships.
  • Preparing an international collaboration
    The International Bureau of the BMBF finances the costs of stays by visiting international researchers if their visit contributes to the preparation of an international collaboration. Applications for funding can be submitted by the inviting universities, non-university research institutes or small and medium-sized enterprises.
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