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Information für die Wissenschaft Nr. 19 | 26. März 2009
NSFC/DFG-Joint programme "Land Use and Water Resources Management under Rapidly Changing Environmental Conditions"

The National Science Foundation of China (NSFC) and the German Research Foundation (DFG) announce a jointly funded programme: "Land Use and Water Resources Management under Rapidly Changing Environmental Conditions".

The experience of success in Sino-German research collaborations and their internationally recognised outcomes have demonstrated the potential that lies within integrated research and also highlighted the needs for more coordinated research.

This joint call creates a forum of Sino-German collaborative projects to foster research that allows quantification of water and nutrient cycling, including losses of N2O to the atmosphere, as well as soil erosion and sedimentation in a coupled system under changing climate and land use. The Hai He and the Poyang Lake basins have been selected as exemplary study areas. The targeted research projects shall aim at the development and application of novel coupled models that in-tegrate the atmosphere, vegetation, soil, groundwater and surface water components. These models should operate at scales appropriate for evaluating management strategies of the water resources and account for the principal feedback and interaction mechanisms.

Proposals from investigators from both countries are encouraged to focus on the following topics. (Note that investigators must clearly outline the way in which their proposed studies are linked to these major themes of the joint programme.)

  • Climate: Predicting future regional climate in the surroundings of Hai He River and Poyang Lake basins and how the climate is affected by the fast land cover and land use changes occurring in the basins.
  • Soils and Land Use: Predicting and modelling soil erosion in a future climate, particularly due to changes in extreme events, and non-point source pollution related to land use and erosion.
  • Aquatic Ecosystems: Responses of aquatic ecosystems to regional land use and resulting river morphology changes.
  • Groundwater Recharge and Subsurface Heterogeneity: Predicting groundwater recharge and the role of subsurface heterogeneity in subsurface hydrology.

Eligibility requirements for German applicants are similar to those of DFG's Priority Programmes, allowing proposals from researchers of all disciplines and at research institutions in Germany.

Joint proposals (in English) must be submitted to NSFC and DFG by Monday, 15 June 2009, with the keyword "Land Use and Water Management - Joint Sino-German Call." Chinese scientists applying for funding will follow the NSFC's guidelines for proposals, and German scientists follow the DFG's guidelines for proposals. Each application shall include the following components in the given sequence (in English):

  • joint application form
  • joint abstract (no more than one page in length)
  • joint research plan (no more than 15 pages), which shall also include
  • a description of the expected gain from the collaboration
  • a clear description of the planned research collaboration with responsibilities of both partners including questions of data access, data exchange and intellectual properties
  • a description of the project's significance to researcher training and to the development of the research environment
  • justification for requested costs shall be stated in the research plan
  • curriculum vita of principal investigators
  • a list of five most recent publications of the principal investigators of both countries relevant to the research proposed and five other recent publications.

It is anticipated that funding of the collaborative projects will be installed in January 2010. All proposals should be planned for three-year duration.

Weiterführende Informationen

More detailed information about the scientific aims, the four thematic issues and the study areas can be found at:

The application form is available for download on the DFG's website at:

To prepare the joint proposal with the Chinese counterpart, German scientists can employ the DFG instrument "Funding for the Initiation and Enhancement of Bilateral Cooperation":

For further information please contact:

  • Dr. Ute Weber,
    Tel. +49 228 885-2760,


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