Freigeist Fellowships for International Researchers in Germany, 2017

Freigeist Fellowships for International Researchers in Germany, and applications are submitted till  October 12, 2017. Volkswagen Foundation is offering fellowship for international young researchers in all disciplines. Ten to fifteen fellowships for researchers will be awarded per year. The initial funding period is five years; depending on the field of research and career experience. Full details:

School(Institutions/ Country): | Germany

Level: Research Programme

Field(s): all disciplines and topics

Deadline:  October 12, 2017.

Funded By: Volkswagen Foundation

Beneficiaries(Target Groups): Freigeist Fellowships are targeted for early-stage researchers of all nationalities.

Scholarship Duration: The initial funding period is five years.Scholarship covers: During the first five-year period of funding a substantial is expected of the hosting institution/university (rooms, IT infrastructure, computers, assistant workers, resources). Extra-mural institutions as Max-Planck-Institutes or Helmholtz Centers are to contribute 50 percent of the total amount of the project costs (only project-specific costs, overheads may not be included in the calculation). A lower contribution may be acceptable for other research institutions. For the possible second phase of funding it is expected that the hosting institute (if applicable) provides funding for personnel – and in all cases the prospected of offering the Fellow a permanent position.


A ‘Freigeist’ fellow: for the Volkswagen Foundation this means a young researcher with a strong personality, a creative mind, an ability to identify and use freedom, dedicated to overcoming resistance.

If necessary, he or she will be a free spirit, enjoying the unexpected, even unexpected difficulties.

A ‘Freigeist’ fellow opens up new horizons and combines critical analysis with imagination and innovative solutions.

By thinking ahead the ‘Freigeist’ fellow will act as a catalyst in overcoming existing disciplinary, institutional and even national boundaries.


‣ Anyone can apply who identifies with the goals of Freigeist Fellowships .

‣ Candidates must, however, conform to the following conditions:
-Their doctorate must have been obtained not longer than five years previously.

‣ The Fellowship must from the outset be integrated within a university or an extra-mural research institution in Germany.

‣ Candidates must already have changed their academic environment and moved to a new location – at the latest when starting the Fellowship. A return to the working context of the doctorate will only be accepted under exceptional circumstances.

‣ A previously completed research sojourn abroad, at the latest integrated in the proposed research project.

Selection criteria for Freigeist Fellowships

‣ the applicant’s personal qualifications

‣ a capability for independent research

‣ the scientific quality/originality of the project
-depending on the thrust of the project: the potential for breakthroughs, new methodological approaches, interdisciplinary cooperation
-a constructive approach to possible risks


‣ The Foundation envisages to come to a decision within nine months after the respective application deadline.

‣ Candidates who – due to the reviewers’ assessment of the written application – will not be invited to present their projects, will receive a notice in due course after the first review panel meeting.

‣ In consideration of the high number of applications it is in these cases not possible to give reason for the decision or to communicate comments from the reviewers.

Scholarship Application Method

‣ Applicants are required to apply via online.

‣ Scholarship Application Due Date: The next deadlines for applications  October 12, 2017.

‣ Application forms and guidelines can be download from the official website

‣ It is important to read the application procedure, and visit the official websites (link found below) for detailed information on how to apply for this scholarship.

For more Information about Freigeist Fellowships


2017,  2018, germanyInternationalresearch , Grants , October Deadline, Fellowships

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