Information for Researchers, No. 12 | February 11, 2022

DKN Establishes New Working Groups

The DKN (Deutsches Komitee für Nachhaltigkeitsforschung in Future Earth – German Committee Future Earth) is an advisory board mandated by the Executive Committee of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation). The DKN’s mandate includes furtherance of the scientific sustainability agenda by identifying and composing strategically significant topics in sustainability research and integrating them into the international Future Earth and World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) platforms. The DKN acts as the national contact point for international developments and activities implemented in the context of these international platforms/research programmes. The DKN also assumes the task of helping shape Future Earth’s development process in a substantive and structural manner.

The DKN is setting up new working groups to strengthen the sustainability research in Germany and to support scientists in the development of relevant research activities within sustainability science. Working groups receive funding for two meetings of the working group members (nine people, incl. spokesperson) and for organising a DFG round table (max. 30 people) within a period of 1.5 to maximum of two years. Applications may be sent to by 1 April 2022.

By establishing working groups, the DKN promotes the development of research topics that are in the international context of sustainability research. Working groups based at DKN

  • are closely related to one of the topics of the DKN position paper (Jacob, D. et al., 2022: Research priorities for sustainability science. German Committee Future Earth, Hamburg, Germany), or
  • contribute to another innovative research field which is described in the proposal concerning its scientific relevance,
  • contribute to a significant impact of German research in the international research landscape and pursue both content-related and research-strategic goals,
  • can develop strategies for inter- and transdisciplinary joint projects.

At the end of the working group’s term, a concrete product should emerge, which must be named in the proposal and agreed on at the first working group meeting. Examples for working group products are:

  • elaboration of a research agenda with open research questions (addressed to science and research funding), or
  • prospects for a German research project in an international context, or
  • position paper or policy paper with the main results and conclusions of the working group aimed at defined addressees.

Further Information

For more information about DKN and the working groups, please refer to:


Please find the full call for proposals in English and German here:

Download of the DKN position paper:

Jacob, D., Birkmann, J., Bollig, M., Bonn, A., Nöthlings, U., Ott, K., Quaas, M., Reichstein, M., Scholz, I., Malburg-Graf, B., Sonntag, S. (2022): Research priorities for sustainability science. German Committee Future Earth, Hamburg, Germany.

Please send your working group application in “pdf-format” to the DKN secretariat by 1 April 2022 via e-mail:

Please also take the opportunity to get advice from the secretariat in advance.

Contact DKN secretariat:

Contact at DFG: