DFG makes Presentation to State Funding Agencies in Brazil

(17.09.19) The third general meeting of the National Council of State Funding Organisations (CONFAP) was held in São Paulo on 22 and 23 August. As part of the programme, the presidents of the state funding agencies (FAPs), currently 26 in number, meet regularly to exchange ideas and experiences with each other as well as with representatives of ministries, international agencies and funding organisations at federal level. The programme covered topics including strategic aspects of funding, science communication, innovation and digital transformation. Discussion focused in particular on growing opportunities for international cooperation, which CONFAP President Evaldo Ferreira Vilela considers to be of fundamental importance to the research sector.

Participants of the CONFAP Forum


CONFAP has focused on accelerating its internationalisation in recent years and has entered into numerous agreements. The objective now is to consolidate and expand these cooperation agreements. According to Vilela, along with mobility funding, this should also pave the way for increasing numbers of bilateral projects with lead participation by Brazilian researchers. To that end, a day for a discussion with CONFAP’s international partners was scheduled for 21 August, ahead of the meeting in São Paulo. Representatives of the DAAD and the DFG were invited, as well as funding institutions from Great Britain, the USA, Spain and the European Union.

Dr. Kathrin Winkler, Director of the DFG’s Latin America office, outlined the DFG's activities in Brazil. In her presentation, she spoke about important aspects of the design of international funding programmes and the harmonisation of funding processes between the DFG and Brazilian partner organisations. The DFG has already entered into agreements with three of the 26 state funding institutions in Brazil over recent years. The longest-standing agreement – with the FAPESP in the State of São Paulo – dates from 2006. As part of cooperation arrangements, it is possible for both sides to apply for almost all the DFG's funding instruments in an ongoing process – from the creation of international collaborations and bilateral research projects right through to larger research consortia, such as those funded via the DFG’s Coordinated Programmes. A cooperation agreement with FAPEMIG has existed in the State of Minas Gerais since 2009, while the DFG has been working with FAPERJ in Rio de Janeiro since 2014.

Cooperation via the CONFAP association is already enabling a number of funders of international research – such as the Newton Fund, the ERC, the Joint Programming Initiative (JPI) of the European Commission or the Italian Network comprising 18 universities – to directly fund projects or mobility across Brazil on the basis of the budgets of the respective FAPs, which are administered centrally through CONFAP.

Further information on the meeting (in Portuguese):