Visual Universitätsmedizin Mainz

Key Funding Agencies explained briefly

You can find current tenders for these and other funding agencies in our "Current Funding Options" section. Guidelines and important documents pertaining to the application process as well as to project implementation under individual programs may be found in the "Downloads/Forms/Links" section.

Note: To have enough time to support you with your proposal and provide sound feedback, please submit the complete documents to the  Department of Research at least 14 days before the submission deadline.


Alexander von Humboldt Foundation

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation promotes scientific cooperation between excellent foreign and German scientists, making it possible for foreign scientists to conduct research in Germany. Whether as a young postdoctoral fellow at the beginning of their scientific career, or as an already experienced and more established scientist, or even as one of the world's leading experts in their field, the funding providided under the foundation's research awards and fellowships supports scientists at all career levels.

Further information on the various opportunities available can be found on the homepage of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.


The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports innovative research ideas and projects through targeted funding programs. General information on the funding options available from the BMBF as well as the "Förderdatenbank (Funding Database) des Bundes, der Länder und der EU" here (GER).

Internal Procedure at UMC

In order to submit a proposal for funding to the Federal Ministries, applicants must complete an AZAP application. A corresponding application template from the University Medical Center Mainz can be found in the Downloads section. The personnel positions listed there are to be understood as examples. For the calculation of personnel and other costs, please contact the Department for Third-Party Funding as soon as possible in advance. Please note that all forms must be signed by the Management of the Research and Teaching Department. To ensure sufficient time for a well-founded feedback, check of the cost calculation and the signature by the Management, please submit your application including all attachments at least 14 days before the deadline. If you have questions regarding submitting a proposal or completing an AZAP application in easy-Online, please contact  the Department of Research for assistance.

Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds

The Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds is an independent, non-profit organization for the exclusive and direct promotion of basic research in biomedicine. A central focus of the funding available is the promotion of outstanding young researchers and their work, in particular through a maximum three years of support for ambitious dissertation projects developed in internationally renowned laboratories. A similar funding program will be offered to medical students willing to put their studies on hold for at least 10 months in order to pursue an experimental biomedical research project in a laboratory outside their home university.

Further information on the application modalities for these funding programs is available here.

Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation

The Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation is an independent, non-profit foundation whose purpose is to promote the medical, biological, chemical, and pharmaceutical sciences. The foundation is committed to excellent natural and life sciences basic research, which it supports through its initiatives, funding programs and scientific awards. One of its central goals is to provide scientists with the necessary scope to conduct outstanding research.

Details on the foundation's opportunities can be found here.

Carl Zeiss Foundation

The Carl Zeiss Foundation is an active supporter of excellent and visionary research in the field of natural and engineering sciences in the federal states of Baden-Wurttemberg, Rhineland-Palatinate and Thuringia. At the same time, the promotion of basic research and application-oriented science is equally important to the foundation. Their goal is to create scope for scientific breakthroughs in both disciplines.

For further information on the funding lines offered by the foundation, please refer to their website.

Deutsche Krebshilfe

As the largest private third-party donor, Deutsche Krebshilfe supports innovative projects and measures with a model character and which directly benefit patients.

An overview of the individual support programs offered by Deutsche Krebshilfe can be found here (GER).


The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is an association of German institutions of higher education and their student bodies. The organization supports the internationalization of science and research both in Germany and abroad. Through scholarships, it provides students, educators and researchers access to the best research and study opportunities and promotes transnational cooperations and partnerships between universities. The DAAD also serve as the National Agency for European university cooperations.

An overview of the funding opportunities available from the DAAD is available here.

German Research Foundation

The German Research Foundation (DFG) is the central self-governing research organization in Germany. The core task of the DFG is the competitive selection and financing of of the best research projects by scientists at universities and research institutes in Germany. Both individual and joint projects can be funded. As a rule, funding topics are open and submission is possible on a rolling basis. Further information on DFG funding can be found here.

If you have any questions about the application, please contact Dr. med. Angela Clement, Tel. 17-9948.


The DFG Liaison Officer serves as an on-site point of contact for researchers who are considering applying to the DFG for funding. Contact details for the liaison officer of the JGU can be found here.


Procedure for Large Equipment Applications

On 1 April 2018, the DFG amended the procedure for the submission of applications for large research equipment pursuant to Article 91b of the Grundgesetz (Germany). Effective immediately, applications will be submitted electronically by the applicant (researcher) via the ELAN portal of the DFG. The subsequent authorization of the application by the executive board is made after he researcher submits the receipt document provided in the portal to the executive board for signature. Only after the receipt document has been submitted to the DFG will the application be processed. Since the application must include confirmation of 50% co-financing of the equipment requested through the Executive Board, all researchers must contact the Research Office at UMC-Mainz prior to submitting an application in the ELAN portal of the DFG to clarify any open questions regarding co-financing.

Else-Kröner-Fresnius-Stiftung (EKFS)

The Else Kröner-Fresenius-Stiftung (EKFS) is a non-profitable charitable organization dedicated to the promotion of medical research and supports medical-humanitarian projects. The two leitmotifs of the support offered by the foundation for medical-scientific research are scientific excellence and the promotion of young medical scientists, especially clinician scientists. Most of the funding allocated to individual projects that can be applied for at any time and to the annually changing calls for young researchers.

Details about the specific funding opportunities offered by EKFS can be found on the homepage of the foundation.

EU Funding

EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation - Horizon 2020


The current funding program of the EU is the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation - Horizon 2020, which has been in place since 2014 and will run through 2020.

Past, current and future calls can be found on the Funding & Tenders Portal of the EU. On this page you will find important information and relevant documents for submitting a proposal.

The first step towards a research project involves finding the right funding instrument. You will find current Horizon 2020 calls under the three major program lines:


1. Excellent Science

2. Industrial Leadership

3. Societal Challenges


and under the following minor funding lines:


4. Spreading Excellence and Widening Participation

5. Science with and for Society

6. European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT)

7. Euratom


If you have questions regarding the calls and tenders available and their suitability for your project, the  Department of Research will be glad to offer their advice and support.


Other European Funding Programs

G-BA Innovationsfonds

The Gemeinsame Bundesausschuss (G-BA; Federal Joint Committee) has the mandate to promote new forms of care, that go beyond the previous standard care of statutory health insurance, and care research projects, that are aimed at gaining knowledge to improve existing care.

For this purpose, the Federal German Government has launched an innovation fund. The innovation committee established at the G-BA decides on the applications. Further information and funding announcements can be found here (GER).

Internal Procedure at UMC

The complete application consists of two documents - an application form and a cost specification form. The  Department of Research will gladly provide you with a cost specification form already pre-filled with all administrative data of the University Medical Center. For the calculation of personnel and other costs, please contact the Department for Third-Party Funding as soon as possible in advance. Please note that all forms must be signed by the Management of the Research and Teaching Department. To ensure sufficient time for a well-founded feedback, check of the cost calculation and the signature by the Management, please submit your application including all attachments at least 14 days before the deadline. If you have any questions about the application, please contact the  Department of Research.

International Funding Options

There is a wide variety of funding options available for international cooperations and for the internationalization of research. An initial introduction to and an overview of the possibilities to form international cooperations in education and research can be found on the website of the BMBF "Kooperation International." The website offers not only a chance to orient yourself on the subject, but also the opportunity to establish first international contacts and to start work on concrete projects. You can also conduct a region-specific search for funding opportunities for international cooperations on the homepage of the BMBF's International Bureau.

Country-specific funding opportunities can be found on the website of the German Research Foundation (DFG).


BMBF Portal "Kooperation International" / BMBF International Bureau

DFG Information on "International Cooperation"

German-Israeli Foundation

Novartis Foundation

The Novartis Foundation for therapeutic research promotes medical-scientific research projects at German universities and institutions whose research is characterized by an innovative approach and its special emphasis on therapeutic relevance. In addition to funding projects, the foundation also runs a scholarship program for highly qualified junior researchers.

Information on submitting an application for funding can be found on the homepage of the Novartis Foundation (GER).

US Funding

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

National Science Foundation (NSF)


Conflicts of interest in US-funded projects

Funding institutions attach great importance to ensuring that project managers and staff have no financial interests that could influence the projects, in particular for those funded using US taxpayer money (i.e. NSF, NIH). For this reason, all institutions receiving funding from these funding agencies are required to adhere to the following Financial Conflict of Interest directives:

The Regulations on Financial Conflict of Interest on US Funded Projects of the University Medical Center of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz was created according to these guidelines. Further information as well as relevant regulations and accompanying documents can be found in our Downloads/Forms/Links section.

Fritz Thyssen Foundation

The Fritz Thyssen Foundation was founded to promote science and research. According to its statutes, the exclusive purpose of the foundation is the direct promotion of science and research at scientific universities and research centers, primarily in Germany and with special consideration of young scientists.

You may find information on the various funding opportunities offered by the foundation on their homepage.

Volkswagen Foundation

The Volkswagen Foundation promotes science and technology in research and teaching. It facilitates research projects in promising areas and helps scientific institutions improve structural conditions for their work. The foundation devotes special attention to young researchers and to the collaboration of researchers across disciplinary and national boundaries.

More information on the ooportunities for funding offered by the Volkswagen Foundation is available on their website.

Wilhelm Sander-Stiftung

The foundation's purpose is the promotion of medical research, in particular of cancer treatment and disease control. The Focus of this funding option is increasingly on cancer research. For this purpose, the foundation has approved over 190 million euros for clinical and clinical-experimental research projects since its founding, placing it as an important source non-state funding for innovative research in Germany.

Further information on the Wilhelm Sander-Stiftung may be found here (GER).

Further Funding Options and Programs

Further information on current funding programs can be found on the ELFI - Electronic Research Funding Information System website. The Information service Forschung, Internationales, Transfer - FIT für die Wissenschaft also offers a wide variety of funding options. 

A good overview of the foundations registered in Germany is available on the homepage of the Stifterverband.


Dr. Angela Clement
Deputy Head of the Department / Research Advisor
Tel.: 06131 39-29403

Janina Preuß
Research Advisor
Tel.: 06131 39-29404

Dr. Claudia Hackenberg
Research Advisor
Tel.: 06131 39-29386