Innovative research as a new field of opportunity

We support high-risk, application-oriented research at the interfaces between engineering and the natural sciences. Multiple crises from climate change to energy and resource shortages to inflation and pandemics constitute our present. New technologies can help create solutions. We have made it our new task to play a targeted role in this.

Zu sehen sind Windräder, Solarzellen, einen Staudamm und starke Sonnenstrahlen.

Interdisciplinary research in the natural, material and engineering sciences can help develop concrete solutions to urgent societal challenges such as energy and water supply for cities, landscapes and industry. For example, through smart materials used for surfaces or the use of artificial intelligence and supercomputers to better assess and respond to the consequences of climate change. However, in order to enable social change processes, questions about legal and economic foundations must also be clarified and debates initiated both within and outside the scientific community.

From science to application

By funding application-oriented projects, we support researchers from the natural and engineering sciences, medicine, economics and law in jointly developing innovative solutions to societal problems.

In doing so, we focus on particularly urgent challenges of our future, as they arise especially in dealing with climate change and following the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations: From questions of spatial, natural and urban design to regenerative energy generation and developments in materials science, we promote the emergence and implementation of practical, application-oriented solutions. But we are also interested in the jurisprudential study of social transformation processes and their practical implications. For this purpose, we provide not only financial resources, but also support in entrepreneurial issues and transfer aspects, if required, so that research results can be translated into concrete applications or even business models and start-ups.

We promote what comes after basic research and before market maturity

In particular, we identify projects that can no longer be located in basic research, but are also not yet developed enough to be implemented directly by for-profit companies - because this is precisely where we believe there is great potential for the emergence of innovations that often remains untapped.

We see an important key to the development of new approaches in the interaction of different disciplines. Our funding therefore focuses in particular on interdisciplinary projects and strengthens the creative interaction between different disciplines. However, we also consider it important to address transformation issues in society and to promote understanding of research findings. We therefore focus on dialog formats and support scientists in communicating their findings in a way that can be understood by the general public.

Who can apply for funding?

The regional funding focus is on northern Germany, in the Hamburg metropolitan region, but also beyond. Specific funding lines are currently being developed and will be gradually established in the course of 2023. There will be regular application opportunities for individuals, especially junior researchers, in selected thematic areas. Funding will be provided to individuals and interdisciplinary groups who can provide evidence of their cutting-edge research in Germany or abroad.

At present, there is no possibility to apply for funding for research projects beyond this. However, we would be happy to discuss with you where you see a particular need for funding or what exciting ideas you have for implementation.

Current tender

Eine Chemikerin führt im Labor ein Experiment durch.

Innovation Academy for Applied Infection Research

For the current call for proposals, we are looking for scientists who conduct research at the interface of medicine, engineering and the natural sciences and who want to bring novel developments into practical application. The funding is aimed at doctoral students in the advanced stage of their doctorate, post-doctoral students and junior professors and scientific employees who belong to a research institution in northern Germany or who have a position in prospect there.

To the tender.




Dr. Marion Helen Stagars
Project Manager Dr. Marion Helen Stagars +49 40 533295-645
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