Germany: Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS) Fellowship Programme - Senior Fellowships for the Academic Year 2021/22

The University of Freiburg offers a fellowship programme, the “FRIAS COFUND Fellowship Programme” (FCFP).

About 20 fellows (juniors and seniors) from all disciplines are given the opportunity of spending 3 to 12 months working on their own research project at the university’s research college, the Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS).

The current call invites applications for fellowships for the academic year 2021/22.

Deadline is 1 October 2020.

Application and details

The FCFP is intended for current or future leaders in their fields. Applications are invited from academics of all nationalities who may not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies etc.) in Germany for more than 12 months in the three years immediately preceding the call deadline.

The programme offers outstanding research opportunities, not only in the research environment of an internationally highly competitive university, but also with the advantage of being part of an interdisciplinary community of fellows at FRIAS.


Fellowships of 3 to 10 months in the Senior scheme may be applied for. They will allow researchers to conduct their own research projects.

Successful applicants will become FRIAS fellows with all the corresponding rights and obligations for the requested funding period.

Fellows in the senior scheme (without a work contract at their home institution) are typically employed as guest professors. The guest professorship is a formal employment contract with the University of Freiburg, valid for the duration of the fellowship. By signing an employment contract with the University of Freiburg, all fellows are covered by national insurance (unemployment, pension, health and accident insurance). Fellows will obtain an internationally attractive salary. Senior fellows who stay on paid leave of absence from their home institution during the time of the fellowship will receive an additional contract as a guest professor at the University of Freiburg to compensate them for the extra costs of their stay in Freiburg.

Fellows accompanied by at least one child receive an additional monthly family allowance.

Each fellow will receive a research cost contribution. All fellows will have at their disposal a budget for individual training, a travel allowance to cover the costs of the inbound and outbound journey and a mobility allowance to cover relocation costs.

Eligibility criteria

1. Formal eligibility criteria

Doctoral degree plus a minimum of 6 years post-doctoral research experience or a tenured professorship or equivalent permanent position at the time of the application deadline.

Mobility rule: Researchers from all countries are eligible; however, applicants may not have resided or have carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc) in Germany for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately preceding the call deadline. Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.

Applicants must submit the complete application dossier by the specified deadline. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered. Formatting rules have to be observed. Page limits may not be exceeded.

The proposal must meet the standards of academic English in international research. Applicants must propose a research project that can be supported at the University of Freiburg (refers to infrastructural, technical and laboratory requirements, especially in the experimental sciences). Prior to submission of the application, experimental scientists are required to identify a host laboratory in Freiburg where their research project can be carried out.

The research project must not be engaged with topics that are excluded from EU funding due to ethical issues.

2. Basic academic quality criteria (minimum requirements)

Publication record:

Natural sciences/medicine/engineering: 10 publications since 1 January 2015 listed in Web of Knowledge (Thomson Reuters).

Humanities and social sciences: 10 publications since 1 January 2015 in peer-reviewed, internationally recognised journals, or chapters in peer-reviewed edited volumes, or peer- reviewed monographs (counted as three publications).

International mobility:

Depending on the length of career, the applicant’s development should meet today’s standards of international mobility or indicate some other sign of international involvement.

The applicant must have spent at least two international research stays (each of at least two months duration) at international institutions during or after the doctoral phase.

Internationality of the project:

The project should not be of local interest only, but should have sufficient potential for international transfer.

Further details at: https://www.frias.uni-freiburg.de/de/foerderprogramme/cofund/requirements-and-applications

Selection process

The selection of fellows under the Marie S. Curie FCFP is highly competitive and strictly merit- based. Fellowships will be awarded to individuals with challenging and innovative research projects of top academic quality. The all-important selection criteria are the academic excellence of both the applicant and the project proposal. Personal qualifications with regard to experience and capability to conduct the research project will also be taken into account during the evaluation of the applications. A thematic proximity between the project and the research profile of the University of Freiburg is expected to guarantee an added value for conducting research within the FCFP.

The FCFP selection process involves three steps:

  1. Eligibility check

  2. Peer review by external experts

  3. Final selection by the external FRIAS Scientific Advisory Board