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Information for Researchers No. 46 | 26 August 2014
German-African Cooperation Projects in Infectology - 2015

The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) again calls for proposals of joint research projects between scientists in Germany and Africa investigating infectious diseases and their social implications.

The scope of the call includes:

  • The investigation of neglected infectious diseases in humans and animals but also research on topics of their social and economical impact.
  • The establishment or consolidation of mutually beneficial equal partnerships that allow African researchers to investigate topics of local significance and that open up research opportunities in Africa to German scientists in the long term.
  • An additional central goal is to provide support and funding for the academic and professional careers of young African researchers in their home countries in order to contribute to building research capacities in Africa.
  • It is furthermore desirable to strengthen research networks within Africa, therefore several

African partners may participate in one project.

Planning and executing such projects will often require institutional coupling to strong international research centres in Africa. Therefore African project partners can also be located at such institutions.

The DFG primarily wants to encourage researchers in human and veterinary medicine as well as in related humanities fields to request funding for the investigation of neglected diseases. Projects on AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis research, which are already heavily funded by international programmes will only constitute a minor proportion of the funded projects and can only be considered if neglected issues of these diseases are addressed.

The scope of the call excludes:

  • Funding of research infrastructure
    (but necessary additions to the equipment can be applied for)
  • Clinical studies
  • Development of diagnostic procedures
  • Search for novel pharmacological substances without primarily investigating their mechanisms of action
  • Product development


The Principal Investigator submitting the proposal must be integrated into the German research system and is in charge of the project. Funding for the African partner/s has to be applied for within the full proposals later on. For grant eligibility on the German side, the usual DFG rules apply. For researchers at non-university institutions, the rules on mandatory cooperation apply as well.

More information can be found in the current version of Guidelines Research Grants Programme (DFG form 50.01 English version). Submissions exclusively by scientists not integrated into the German research system cannot be accepted for legal reasons. At least one partner must be a scientist working in Germany.

Format of Drafts

Project proposals should initially be submitted as drafts (up to 5 pages per proposal, plus curricula vitae of up to 2 pages and up to 10 publications per project participant).

Drafts have to include:

  • the scientific description of the project;
  • the cooperation scheme;
  • a strategy for early-career researcher training at the African location;
  • a brief description of the African project partner’s current infrastructure.

A detailed breakdown of expected costs is not needed at this stage.

Draft proposals must be written in English and submitted by the German project partners. African project partners cannot propose independently without German scientists.

German and African partners form a team and will each receive funding according to the project requirements. Due to the goal of strengthening research capacities at the African sites, it is highly desirable to allocate the majority of funding to the African partners. Proposals should initially be outlined for a project duration of three years. It will be possible to submit renewal proposals according to the established DFG procedures.


Draft proposals will be evaluated by an international review panel. Given a favourable review the German Principal Investigator will be invited to submit a full proposal.
Projects being funded from previous calls do not need to submit draft proposals. TheirPrincipal Investigators will be invited to submit renewal proposals at a later point in time.


Draft proposals must be sent digitally (e-mail with attachment and activated “read receipt confirmation”) and only to the e-mail address below by 23 January 2015.

Further Information

To ensure quick responses, queries should be submitted in writing to Link auf E-Mailinfectiology@dfg.deexclusively. Enquiries directed to other addresses cannot be processed.

Contact for scientific queries:

Contact for international cooperation queries:

DFG form 50.01 Guidelines Research Grants Programme [10/11] (English version) is available at: