Research institutions in NRW sharpen profiles and strengthen networks
The funding offered is attractive and coveted. For universities and non-university research institutions in particular, it represents an important resource that supports the institutions in fulfilling their scientific mission. In order to position the universities and research institutions in North Rhine-Westphalia in the best possible way in competing for further funding, the Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia (MKW NRW) assists them in developing new research profiles and focal points and in establishing strong research networks. To this end, the MKW NRW is gearing its research funding towards science-driven, thematically open funding with new funding instruments.
The funding instrument: “Profilbildung”
The funding instrument newly developed in 2020 and entering a second round in 2022 is "profile building". It is intended to provide creative scope for universities and research institutions to develop forward-looking topics with great potential and establish new research priorities. Applications can be submitted by individual or by several institutions together from NRW. An overview (in German) of the projects funded in Profilbildung 2020 can be viewed here. A brief description (in German) of the projects funded in Profiling 2022 can be viewed here.
The funding instrument: “Netzwerke 2021”
The aim of the second funding instrument, "Networks", is to sustainably strengthen existing thematically focused networks of universities, universities of applied sciences and non-university research institutions, possibly with other partners. The funding is intended to increase the national and international visibility and competitiveness of the research networks and enable high-level follow-up funding. In this way, the participating institutions lay the foundation for the establishment of new structures or institutions in NRW that are jointly funded by the Federal and State Governments. An overview (in German) of the projects funded in "Netzwerke 2021" can be found here.
The funding instrument: „Kooperationsplattformen 2022“
The goal of the third funding instrument, "Kooperationsplattformen", is to sustainably strengthen and expand existing, thematically focused and cross-location networks of universities, universities of applied sciences and non-university research institutions with external cooperation partners. In essence, it aims to give universities and non-university research institutions the opportunity to build strategic cooperation platforms at eye level in networks with companies and other social actors. An overview (in German) of the projects funded in "Kooperationsplattformen 2022" can be found here.
In the four funding instruments, applications can come from the entire spectrum of humanities and social sciences, life sciences, natural sciences and engineering sciences.
The tasks of the DLR Projektträger
DLR Projektträger supports the MKW NRW in the development and implementation of the funding announcements. As the only project management organisation in Germany, DLR Projektträger has scientific expertise and research funding experience in all fields of science and is well networked in the research scene. It can therefore assess the various project ideas in a qualified manner and advise the MKW on the selection of the best projects. To this end, it will organise selection processes with external reviewers and a respected selection jury. DLR Projektträger provides targeted support to the NRW research institutions in implementing the funding by advising those interested in funding and applicants, reviewing the projects, providing technical support for the selected projects and monitoring them.