Information for Researchers, No. 9 | March 11, 2019

National Research Data Infrastructure (NFDI)

NFDI Expert Committee decides at inaugural meeting to hold NFDI conference for all potential applicants

NFDI Expert Committee decides at inaugural meeting to hold NFDI conference for all potential applicants

In adopting the initial selection process for the establishment of a national research data infrastructure, for which Germany’s federal and state governments will provide up to €90 million in funding from 2019 to 2028, the Joint Committee of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) also appointed an NFDI Expert Committee and selected its members. The committee consists of 19 academic researchers and representatives of infrastructure facilities, a chairperson and four permanent guests.

The NFDI Expert Committee will design and coordinate the establishment of the NFDI by assuming the central role in the selection of consortia and supporting their consolidation. Consortia are groups of users and providers of research data that come together for the purpose of long-term cooperation. They make up the essential constituent of the NFDI. The NFDI Expert Committee makes recommendations to the Joint Science Conference (GWK) as to which consortia should be included in the NFDI on the basis of a scientific and infrastructure review. On 25 January 2019, the NFDI Expert Committee held its inaugural meeting, discussed the key points of proposal submission stipulated in the federal-state agreement, and decided on the establishment and selection process.

The NFDI will be established as a cooperative network of consortia in three stages, over a period of three years (2019 to 2021). At each of the three stages, new consortia can be added to the NFDI in a research-driven process. The Key Points on the Submission of Proposals defines the eligibility requirements and funding available in accordance with the underlying administrative agreement by Germany’s federal and state governments. Groups of institutions that may include universities, non-university research institutions, ministerial research agencies, academies and other publicly funded information infrastructure facilities or other appropriate entities are eligible for funding as consortia.

As a central component in the lead-up to proposal submission, the Expert Committee decided to organise NFDI conferences. These conferences will be centred on the sharing of information on all planned consortia, regardless of their stage of planning, and networking between consortia. In addition, the DFG will provide information about the NFDI, and there will be an opportunity for discussions with relevant experts from the international research system. The first NFDI conference will be held on 13 and 14 May 2019. All representatives of planned consortia, regardless of their anticipated proposal submission date, are asked to submit an extended abstract by 29 March 2019. This is a prerequisite for participation in this year’s conference. Extended abstracts must be submitted by e-mail to

In addition to providing formal details, the extended abstract should contain information about user requirements and the objectives of the intended consortium. Further information on the conference and a template for the extended abstract will be published on the DFG’s NFDI webpage. The extended abstract serves the sole purpose of preparation for the NFDI conference. It is non-binding with regard to any later proposal and review, and should reflect the status of discussions and planning immediately prior to the conference. The extended abstracts will be made available to conference participants in advance for preparation purposes.

Following the NFDI conference, the Expert Committee will meet to discuss the first call for proposals for NFDI consortia. This call will be published on the DFG’s NFDI webpage in June 2019.

Further Information

For more information about the programme, visit:

DFG contacts:

Fundamental inquiries about the NFDI:

Inquiries about the NFDI Expert Committee:

Information and advice for applicants:

  • Dr. Raphael Birke
  • Dr. Thomas Rahlf
  • Dr. Patricia Schmitz-Möller
  • Dr. Stefan Winkler-Nees

    phone + 49 228 885-3500