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Information for Researchers No. 67 | 23 October 2019
RSF-DFG Cooperation: Possibility for Joint German-Russian Project Proposals in all Fields of Science

To facilitate the support of collaborative work between German and Russian research groups, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) and the Russian Science Foundation (RSF) have opened the possibility for joint German-Russian project proposals for the funding period 2021–2023 in all fields of science. Collaborations of research teams from both countries are invited to submit joint proposals.

At the DFG these proposals are submitted in the funding scheme „Sachbeihilfe/Research Grants“ and will be reviewed in competition with all other proposals in this scheme. It is important to note that there are no separate funds available for these efforts, proposals must succeed on the strengths of their intellectual merit and teams in competition with all other proposals in the funding scheme “Sachbeihilfe/Research Grants”. At the RSF the proposals will be part of an open public competition for the activity “Basic Scientific Research and Exploratory Scientific Research, Conducted by International Research Teams”.

All proposals will be reviewed by both organisations separately. The results of the review process will be shared between the agencies. Support will be granted for those proposals where both DFG and RSF recommend funding.

Proposal preparation and submission

The eligibility to submit a proposal follows the regulations for the programmes for “Basic Scientific Research and Exploratory Scientific Research, Conducted by International Research Teams” at RSF side and for the funding scheme „Sachbeihilfe/Research Grants“ at DFG side (DFG form 50.01). This includes the duty to cooperate (“Kooperationspflicht”) within Germany for members of non-university institutions with permanent positions.

Proposals must be submitted to both organisations in parallel in accordance with the proposal preparation requirements of each side, respectively. For German groups this means submission via DFG’s elan system according to the guidelines for the Research Grants Programme (form 50.01).

All German applicants are requested to use the “Joint Project Description Template” (see link below) instead of form 53/01-05/18. For the RSF, the competition documentation for an open public competition to receive grants from the RSF should be consulted.

For submission via the elan system German partners should select under “Call for Proposals” “RSF-DFG 2019”. In the elan system please go via Proposal Submission – New Project – Individual Grants Programme. In the field “Proposal for a Research Grant” click the button “Start online form” – “Continue”. There you will find the call.

The proposal must include a description of the full proposed research programme and research team and describe the total resources for the joint project (that is, the funds requested for both the Russian and German groups). However, the budget forms submitted to the DFG should only indicate the amount requested from the DFG. For the project description please use the “Joint Project Description Template”. This document will be the basis for the review process at DFG as well as at RSF to ensure that both sides will judge the project on the same fundament.

Additional documents as CV of the principal investigators (PI) from both sides must be uploaded following the rules of each organisation respectively. Please note that the reviewers on both sides will need the full information on the PI from Germany as well as from Russia.

For German partners – please note, that if you are using the elan system for the first time, you need to register prior submitting your application with your complete personal and address details via elan by 2 December 2019 at the latest.

German applicants should notice, that the RSF expects a letter signed by the Russian and German institutions (preferably by the dean of the faculty or the director of the institute) where the project will be conducted, that the institutions agree with the realisation of the project in case of funding, that the project will be supported with the necessary infrastructure and that the partners agree on the property rights. The German groups will receive the template for the letter from their Russian partners.

In accordance with the full proposal target date of the RSF proposals to the DFG should be submitted not later than 9 December 2019.

Will my personal data be transferred to third countries?

Please note that your personal data contained in your proposal or the proposal submitted by your institution/organisation will be transferred if necessary during the decision-making process to the Russian Science Foundation which is involved in making a decision on the funding of the project and to reviewers and that this funding organisation is not based in or the place where they process the data is not located in a member state of the European Union or another signatory country to the Agreement on the European Economic Area. This transfer is permitted as an exception because it is necessary

  • for the performance of the funding contract between you and the DFG and for the implementation of pre-contractual measures relating to your proposal (Art. 49 (1) (b) GDPR),
  • for the performance of the (employment) contract between you and your employer or the applicant institution/organisation (Art. 49 (1) (b), (c) GDPR) or
  • for the conclusion and/or performance of the funding contract concluded in your interest between a third party and/or your institution/organisation and the DFG (Art. 49 (1) (c) GDPR).

Further Information

Joint Project Description Template:

Guidelines for the DFG Research Grants Programme (DFG form 50.01):

DFG’s Electronic Proposal Processing System for Applicants – elan:

Contact persons at the DFG:


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