Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation, DFG) is the central self-governing research funding organisation in Germany that brings together higher education institutions and research organisations. It provides financial support for research at higher education and public research institutions  in Germany, but does not run any research establishments itself.

Scientist at German aerospace center in Cologne

The DFG funds research based in Germany in all disciplines using a bottom-up approach. That means any researcher affiliated with a German research institution holding a PhD or higher qualification can submit an application without any subject restrictions. DFG programmes offer a wide range of opportunities for various career stages. 

This begins with the funding of positions in DFG-funded projects and extends to the funding of an applicant’s own project or research group. The central element of DFG funding is what is known as the Individual Grants Programmes. This programme allows all researchers to submit applications in relation to their own research projects.

International collaborations and international exchange are possible and desired in all DFG funding programmes. Additionally, the DFG provides funds for the initiation of international collaboration and has agreements with specific partner organisations in other countries to fund research projects between German researchers and researchers abroad. Also, specific coordinated programmes focus on international cooperation. They involve not only international research training groups and research consortia, but also DFG support for the European Research Area.







Facts and figures

Approx. 930 employees

In addition to its headquarters in Bonn and the Berlin Office, the DFG also maintains representative offices in India, Japan, Latin America and North America, as well as the Sino-German Center (SGC) in Beijing, a joint venture of the DFG and the National Natural Science Foundation of China



Funding for approx. 32,000 research projects
Annual budget: 3.4 billion euros (2021)


The funds distributed by the DFG on the basis of a science-driven evaluation system come from the Federal Government (70%) and the German states (Länder) (30%) as well as to a small extent from foundations and the European Union. In 2021 its budget totalled 3.4 billion euros.

More information:



Research Foundation (DFG)

Head Office

  • Kennedyallee 40
  • 53175 Bonn

Funding programmes:

Collaborative Research Centres

Collaborative Research Centres offer PhD students opportunities to pursue an outstanding research programme that crosses disciplinary, institutional, departmental and faculty boundaries.

Logo of the German Ressearch Foundation (DFG)

Research Training Groups

Research Training Groups are set up by universities and pursue a focused research programme. They offer a structured PhD programme relating to an innovative, peer-reviewed research topic.

Logo of the German Ressearch Foundation (DFG)

Emmy Noether Programme

Outstanding early career researchers can rapidly qualify for leading positions in science and research or for a university teaching career by heading an independent junior research group and assuming relevant teaching duties.

Logo of the German Ressearch Foundation (DFG)

Initiation of International Collaboration

These grants support international collaboration by enabling eligible German and international researchers and academics to plan partner visits, trips abroad and/or joint workshops with their partners.

Logo of the German Ressearch Foundation (DFG)

Research Grants

Early career and established researchers can pursue a research project on a specific subject within a limited period of time. The programme can provide support for project costs, staff and equipment required to carry out the project. 

Logo of the German Ressearch Foundation (DFG)

Heisenberg Programme

Excellent researchers can prepare for a leading position in science and research and spend time working on an advanced research topic at an institution of their choice.

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Research Centres

Higher education institutions can set up interdisciplinary research centres with DFG support. Up to six professorships and supplementary junior research groups can be funded in this way. > DFG Research Centres