International collaborations

Germany is very interested in international cooperation and exchange, and it supports not only its universities and non-university research institutes, but also its small and medium-sized enterprises when they engage in research cooperation with international partners. You can also benefit from this as a cooperation partner.

A group of lawyers discusses legal problems in a seminar room at the Max Planck Institute for International Private Law in Hamburg.

Where can I obtain more information?

The first place to look for information is the Kooperation international online portal. This website aims to be a communication platform on all aspects of international cooperation in education and research for anyone seeking information and cooperation partners. You will find details of bilateral partnerships and opportunities for participation in programmes and support measures as well as contact persons for your region or country.

First points of contact can also include the German Centres for Research and Innovation (DWIHs) in Moscow, New Delhi, New York, San Francisco, São Paulo and Tokyo. They provide information about research and funding opportunities for international collaborations and research stays.

How can I find a suitable organisation?

If you are looking for a suitable cooperation partner, you can carry out searches of existing collaborations and research projects or directly seek an appropriate research institute. The following databases can be helpful here:

Cooperation with a German university
The German Rectors’ Conference offers a database containing information on over 35,000 international university partnerships with German higher education institutions.

Publicly funded research projects in Germany
Förderkatalog is a Federal Government database containing details of roughly 280,000 ongoing and completed research projects. It enables you to find out what kind of research is being carried out in laboratories with public funds and who is working on which subjects. > Förderkatalog (in German only)

GERiT – German Research Institutions
GERiT provides a comprehensive overview of approximately 29,000 German research institutions. Users can easily search the database by address, subject area or structural criteria.

Database of DFG-funded research projects
The German Project Information System (GEPRIS) provides information about ongoing and completed research projects funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation, DFG), covering nearly all DFG funding programmes since the beginning of the 2000s. The DFG is the central self-governing research funding organisation in Germany.

Funding opportunities for research collaborations

Research collaborations with foreign cooperation partners are supported by various funding bodies and organisations. Here you can find more information:

Initiating international collaborations
The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation, DFG) funds the initiation of international collaboration with material costs or grants to cover travel costs and exploratory visits. Applications for funding may usually only be submitted by researchers who work in Germany or German research institutions. > Initiation of International Collaboration

EU funding
The European Union promotes international cooperation between researchers, institutions and companies in its member and partner countries through Horizon Europe, the EU funding programme for research and innovation.

Preparing an international collaboration
The International Bureau of the BMBF offers a wide range of science- and research-related services, e.g. advice on international cooperation opportunities and conditions. Furthermore, it will finance the cost of a stay by a visiting international researcher if his or her 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.

More funding programmes

Outstanding international postdoctoral scholars with good degrees, publications in prestigious specialist journals, relevant research experience and excellent research proposals can also receive support in the shape of fellowships and prizes.

Two researchers are working in a lab.