Federal and State Governments

Scientist in a greenhouse
Scientist in a laboratory with plants

Public research funding plays a major role in research and development in Germany. Almost one third of spending on research and development is provided by federal and state governments. Government is thus the main sponsor of research in Germany alongside industry.

Several federal ministries are actively engaged in this field with targeted short- to medium-term research funding, project funding, contract research as well as medium- to long-term institutional funding. The Federal Government spends 14.2 billion euros on R&D (2014). Of this amount, 60% is spent by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), 21% by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and 6% by the Federal Ministry of Defence. In addition to this, the German states invest another 10.1 billion euros in R&D (2013).

Federal ministries maintain their own departmental research establishments. These facilities primarily focus on research questions of national relevance, such as health research. In addition, ministries significantly fund research through so-called project management organisations. The states also maintain separate research institutes and set their own priorities with regard to the funding of research and development.


Federal and State Governments Budget
Public-sector R&D spending, 2013

The Federal Government spends 14.2 billion euros on R&D (2014; 2013: 14.3 billion euros). The German states invest an additional 10.1 billion euros (2013).

More: The Federal Funding Advisory Service on Research and Innovation is the central point of contact for any questions concerning research and innovation funding in Germany. Its range of duties include identifying suitable funding programmes, advising on the federal, state and EU research and funding landscape, assisting in the classification of project ideas and recommending specialist partners.


Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH
Project Management Jülich, Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH Office Berlin
Zimmerstraße 26–27
10969 Berlin
Phone +49 800 2623008