Scholarships and Funding Programmes

Overview of scholarships and funding programmes for PhD candidates

Organisations with Scholarships for Outstanding PhD Candidates

In Germany there are 11 organisations which provide 2-year-scholarships (maximal 3 years) for outstanding PhD candidates. The 11 organisations are listed as below:


Although the eligiable criteria for scholarsips differ from organisation to organisation, all of the organisations attach great imporatnce to candidates' engagement in political, social and church sectors next to candidates' professional and personal aspects. Furthermore, the organisations also expect that candidates identify their missions and actively participate in their works. Except the application for the German Academic Scholarship Foundation (which requires a recomendation from an university lecturer), interested persons may apply on their own. Short descriptions, application preconditions, and applicaton procedure of each organisation can be found on the webpage of www.begabtenfoerderungswerke.de13213 or in the Brochure14314 (PDF) which is published by Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

Voluntary tutors

In each university the organisations are represented by voluntary tutors. At this moment, the representatives at the Faculty of Arts are:

  • Cusanuswerk: Prof. Dr. Chr. Horn
  • Evangelisches Studienwerk Villigst: Prof. Dr. G. Bader/Faculty of Protestant Theology
  • Friedrich Ebert Foundation: PD Dr. Gunther Hirschfelder, Prof. Dr. K. Niclauß
  • Friedrich Naumann Foundation: Prof. Dr. J. Scholtyseck, Prof. Dr. E. Weede
  • Hans Böckler Foundation: Prof. Dr. A. Kuhn
  • Hanns Seidel Foundation: Dr. H. Beck/University of Cologne
  • Heinrich Böll Foundation: Prof. Dr. A. Pangritz/Faculty of Protestant Theology
  • Konrad Adenauer Foundation: Prof. Dr. G. Schulz
  • The German Economy Foundation: Prof. Dr. W.-H. Roth/Faculty of Law and Economics
  • The German Academic Scholarship Foundation: Prof. Dr. P. Geyer, Prof. Dr. W.-D. Lange, Prof. Dr. M. Lanzinner, Prof. Dr. Th. A. Schmitz, Prof. Dr. Stuhlmann-Laeisz

Private Foundations

Except the public foundations there are also a great number of private foundations as scholarship providers. Primarily, the private foundations support the topics which are concerned with the major research focuses of the foundations. Apart from the thematic orientation, other aspects, for instance, the location of university, the university itself, the birth place and living place of the applicants', will also be taken into account. For a better overview of the institutes which finance research projects, please visit the webpage of Bundesverbandes Deutscher Stiftungen.

Scholarships for Foreign PhD Candidates and Research Stay Abroad

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is a joint organisation of German higher education institutions and the most famous funding institution for foreign PhD candidates who come for a research stay in Germany. However, the German PhD candidates, who plan to carry out their research abroad for their dissertation, can also apply for a DAAD scholarship. Furthermore, the printing costs for publication of scholarship holders' will also be covered by the DAAD.

Research Training Groups

Within the research training groups the PhD candidates will be supported with scholarships. Within these institutions it is possibile for the PhD candidates to complete their dissertation within the framework of a joint programme which is coordinated and carried out by several university lecturers.

Language Development

The University of Bonn provides various opportunities (mostly require fees) to foreign PhD candidates so that they can further intensify their knowledge of the German language.

Postdoctoral Scholarship

After doctoral studies, there are still possibilities for candidates to apply for other forms of financial support. The spectrum of measures offered extends from the reimbursement of travel costs for a research stay abroad to the financing one-year or two-year research project before the habilitation scholarship is awarded.

Funding Programmes

Full-time Scholarships from Research Projects

Apart from the research scholarships without any restrictions concerning research topics, there are also a number of funding programmes for specific projects in the area of humanities:

Special research projects in the area of humanities, for instance, prehistory and early histoy, archaeology, art history and the historical Islamic studies, etc., will be particularly supported.

The thematic emphasis is on connections between work place and society.

The foundation supports scientific, literary and artistic projects, which explore the epoch of Romanticism (1770-1820) and/or its relation to the contemporary era.

The institute awards scholarships to German and foreign researchers, who investigate the nations in Eastern and Central Europe, with particular focus on the historical German Eastern territories and German residential areas in the Eastern Europe.

Funding Programmes at the University of Bonn

The project Pro-Motion-/Pro-Buddy-Programm, which was initiated by the University of Bonn, facilitates and enhances contact between German and foreign PhD candidates.

The programmes Doktorandinnen-Netzwerk and Mentoring-Programm, which are coordinated by the Equal Opportunity Officers of the University of Bonn, provide the PhD candidates with interactive networks and further mentoring. The initiatives, which enable an individual advisory relationship between an experienced researcher and a young scientist, consist of accompanying workshops and events for further training, and organise exchange among PhD candidates accross all faculties.

Scholarships for Research Stay Abroad

The DFG provides postdoctoral scholarships for those who plan to continue with their research projects. Within the framwork of the Emmy Noether Programme, the DFG leads a group of young scientists. Furthermore, there are also other opportunities for candidates to apply for a position as employee or postdoc fellow in coordinated research projects (research training groups , collaborative research centres, etc.). For more information on currently open positions, please visist the webpage of "academics - Das Karriereportal ".

Research scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)
The DAAD supports candidates, who have completed their doctoral studies, with further qualifying research stay abroad and provides foreign universities and research institutes with (frequently short-term) research grants.

Within the framework of the Feodor Lynen programme, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation provides young scholars and researchers with opportunities to carry out long-term research projects (from one to four years) in foreign institutes.

The Südosteuropa-Gesellschaft awards scholarships to young scientists whose researches focus on Southeast Europe and cover various topics in the areas of humanities, social sciences and economy.

The Fulbright Program awards travel grants to PhD candidates who plan for teaching assignments or a research stay in the USA, and finances (only to a limited extent) research projects with regard to American history, culture and civilisation.

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