New agreement with Spain’s Agencia Estatal des Investigación (AEI)

(22.09.21) In mid-September, a new cooperation agreement between the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) and the Agencia Estatal de Investigación (AEI) was formally signed at the Spanish Embassy in Berlin by the presidents of the two organisations, Professor Katja Becker and Dr. Raquel Yotti. In addition to Ambassador Ricardo Martinez, the German Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research were also represented at the event.

The new Memorandum of Understanding seeks to strengthen cooperation between scholars and research institutions in Germany and Spain in all areas of basic research. The agreement is a first step towards establishing close cooperation between the two partner organisations, also with the aim of developing joint topics for research funding in the future and enabling joint research projects.

DFG President Prof. Dr. Katja Becker

DFG President Prof. Dr. Katja Becker

© Jörg Schneider

DFG President Katja Becker said she was delighted to have the AEI as a new Spanish partner organisation. Numerous Spanish and German academics traditionally maintain close links and work together in bilateral research collaborations, and this significant mutual interest now has the potential to be raised to a new institutional level.

Spain’s Agencia Estatal de Investigación was founded in 2015 by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation. It is the largest research funding organisation in Spain, providing funding for projects in all areas of science and the humanities. In addition to the competitive funding of research projects and their evaluation, the internationalisation of Spanish research is a key element of the AEI’s strategy. The AEI funds more than 3,500 projects pursued by doctoral and post-doctoral students every year.

The cooperation with the Agencia Estatal de Investigación is part of a more marked commitment on the part of the Spanish government in the field of education and research, which is reflected in a 60% increase in the budget for 2021 as compared to 2020. Public funding of the research and innovation system is to be increased regularly to reach 0.75 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) by 2024 and 1.25 percent by 2030.

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