Leibniz Association

The Leibniz Association unites 97 independent research institutes that address issues of international societal importance. Leibniz Institutes conduct research, provide research infrastructures and perform research-based services (liaison, consultation, transfer) for the public, for policymakers, for academia and for businesses.  

A female researcher with red goggles is working in a lab on a table that emits blue light from it's surface. She is holding a scalpel in her right hand.

Organisational details

The Leibniz Association is known for the wide range of topics addressed by its member institutes. It has a decentralised organisational structure. Each institute is legally and financially independent and autonomously determines its research programme.  

Leibniz Institutes collaborate in Leibniz Research Alliances that bring together interdisciplinary expertise to address topics of societal relevance. They also cooperate intensively with universities – in the form of "Leibniz ScienceCampi" (thematic partnerships between university and non-university research institutes), for example – as well as with industry and other partners at home and abroad.  

All Leibniz Institutes are subject to an independent evaluation procedure that is unparalleled in its transparency. Due to the importance of the institutions for the country as a whole, they are funded jointly by the Federal Government and the states (Länder). 

Facts and figures

97 independent institutes 

Approx. 21,000 staff in total, including more 12,000 researchers

Roughly 4,400 supported PhD students

Annual budget: approx. 2.1 billion euros (2021)

Research activities

Leibniz research institutes cover virtually all fields of academic research, ranging from the humanities and social sciences and economics through spatial and life sciences to mathematics, natural sciences, engineering and environmental research. 

One of the main emphases of the Leibniz Association is knowledge transfer. This includes advising and informing representatives of politics, science, business and the general public. Leibniz Institutes are concerned with basic research, applied research and research infrastructures. 

International cooperation

Leibniz Institutes have a firm place in top national and international research. Leibniz researchers cooperate with institutions across the globe and constantly develop their collaborative partnerships. 

Leibniz Institutes are involved in more than 7,200 international collaborations in 147 different countries. In addition, a number of Leibniz Institutes have established partner sites and maintain several field research stations abroad.

A pie chart shows how the Leibniz Association budget is arrived at: 33% by the Federal State, 33% by the Länder Governments, 25% by third party funding and 9% by others.


The budget totals over 2.1 billion euros (2021). Of this amount, more than 1.3 million euros was attributable to institutional funding from the Federal Government and the states (Länder). Third-party funding amounts to roughly 28 per cent of the total budget.

Leibniz Association

Berlin Office

  • Chausseestraße 111
  • 10115 Berlin