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Information for Researchers No. 25 | 26 March 2021
Extension of Financial Support for DFG-Funded Research during the Coronavirus Pandemic

Extension of funding period and additional measures for certain programme areas

In view of the continuing adverse effects of the coronavirus pandemic, the DFG Joint Committee has approved an extension of financial support for DFG-funded research projects approved last year in addition to an expansion of measures in certain programme areas.

Project Funding

As in the past, the DFG will provide additional personnel and material funds (including funds for temporary positions for principal investigators) for a period of up to three months. The prerequisite for this is that the precautionary and protective measures to combat the coronavirus pandemic have caused delays in a DFG-funded project and that additional funding is required for the proper completion of the project. The funds can be requested for projects whose funding period has ended or is due to end between 1 April 2020 and 31 December 2021 (previously: 30 June 2021). This means that the period for corona emergency measures is now extended by six months. As before, the regulations apply to research grants and numerous other procedures under so-called project funding and therefore to the majority of DFG-funded projects. Funding under the Excellence Strategy of the federal and state governments, research centres, research support institutions and major research instrumentation are excluded. Applications should be submitted using DFG form 41.47 to the central mailbox Link auf E-MailFin2.corona-sofortmassnahmen@dfg.de.

Research Groups and Priority Programmes

Research Groups (incl. Clinical Research Groups and Centres for Advanced Studies) and Priority Programmes (excluding infrastructure SPP) whose last funding period ends on 30 June 2022 may apply for additional final funding providing containment measures have caused delays that have impaired achievement of the overall consortium’s project objectives. Funding of up to 80 percent of the previous amount is granted on a pro rata basis for six months. Here, previously approved corona emergency aid is deducted. Coordinators and spokespersons of eligible consortia will be contacted by the DFG Head Office with further information on how to submit a proposal. After consultation within the consortium, the proposal for final funding is to be submitted by the respective project management via elan through the ongoing project (via Proposal Submission – Proposal Overview/Subsequent Proposal – Form for Notifications, Requests and Supplements to the Head Office). DFG form 41.48 must be uploaded as a proposal in the correspondence form.

Emmy Noether and Heisenberg-Programme

Funding recipients under the Emmy Noether Programme and holders of positions under the Heisenberg Programme whose last funding period is due to end on 30 June 2022 will also, on request, be granted additional final funding of up to 80 percent of the calculated original funding amount for six months. Here, previously approved corona emergency aid is deducted. A proposal for final funding can be submitted via elan through the current Emmy Noether or Heisenberg project (via Proposal Submission – Proposal Overview/Subsequent Proposal – Form for Notifications, Requests and Supplements to the Head Office); DFG form 41.48 must be uploaded as a proposal in the correspondence form.

Collaborative Research Centres

Up until now, all Collaborative Research Centres whose funding was due to end on 30 June 2020, 31 December 2020 or 30 June 2021 without the option of a renewal proposal received a lump sum of additional funding for three months from the respective funding end date by submitting an informal proposal. This measure is now extended. All Collaborative Research Centres whose funding is due to end on 31 December 2021 or 30 June 2022 may apply for additional funding for six months. For the period of the additional funding, 80 percent of the previous pro rata funding will continue to be granted. The proposal for additional funding must briefly justify the causal connection with the coronavirus pandemic containment measures.

Research Training Groups

Due to a modification of the Research Training Group programme, which the DFG Joint Committee decided on at its December 2020 meeting, all Research Training Groups can, in principle, extend their contract period for doctoral researchers financed through Research Training Group funds – beyond the standard period of 36 months – by up to twelve months to up to 48 months without incurring additional costs. The Research Training Group itself decides in which cases an extension is granted and for how long (up to 48 months; max. twelve months). If the approved funds are insufficient for this purpose – even after reallocation within the budget year – and provided that the coronavirus containment measures have had an adverse impact on research, the DFG will provide the following additional funds for contract extensions:

  • Three position/fellowship months for all doctoral researchers whose contract ended in 2020 or began in 2021.
  • Six job/fellowship months for all doctoral researchers whose contract began before or during 2020 and is due to continue in 2021.

In justified individual cases, additional funding for up to three position/scholarship months may also be granted for other personnel categories. The funds must be requested from the DFG by 30 September of the year in which they are needed for the contract extensions. A form is provided for this purpose.


For fellowships outside of the Research Training Groups and Collaborative Research Centres, the regulations published in the letters dated 20 March 2020 and 17 July 2020 (see “Further Information”) will continue to apply and are extended as follows (providing research work is possible, even if only to a limited extent):

  • A fellowship that cannot be taken up in the host country due to the pandemic can
    • be converted into a domestic fellowship by the DFG if the remaining period of the fellowship is less than six months. An extension is possible beyond the existing arrangement for a further three months;
    • conversion into a domestic position is possible if the remaining period is longer than six months. An extension of the position by three months is possible.
  • Fellowships that are taken up abroad and return fellowships with a remaining term of less than six months can be extended beyond the existing regulations by a further three months.
  • In the context of combined proposals under the Walter Benjamin Programme, domestic and foreign phases can be flexibly adjusted.
  • Fellowships under the Heisenberg Programme can be shortened and converted into positions on application.
  • Fellowship holders who are unable to start their project due to a current lack of work facilities (closure of laboratories, archives, etc.) can still claim the fellowship after consultation with the host institution.

All applications are to be submitted informally to the Fellowship Office.

Cancellation expenses and academic events

Cancellation expenses for events that have had to be cancelled due to the containment measures can be recognised as project expenses in all programmes. The deadline for holding approved but postponed academic events is extended from 30 September 2021 to 30 June 2022. For these events, the original approval remains in place and the approved amount is supplemented with any cancellation expenses as needed. The funds can also be applied for using DFG form 41.47.

Further Information

DFG form 41.47 is to be found at:

Proposals are to be submitted to the mailbox:

DFG form 41.48 is to be found at:

Proposals are to be submitted via the elan portal in the correspondence form:

For questions regarding Collaborative Research Centres, Research Training Groups, Priority Programmes, Emmy Noether and Heisenberg funding, please contact the person responsible for the respective programme.

If you have any questions about fellowships, please get in touch with your contact at the Fellowship Office.

Letter to fellowship holders dated 20 March 2020:

Letter to fellowship holders dated 17 July 2020:

Please direct any further questions, in particular regarding three-month emergency aid for research grants and other procedures under so-called project funding to the central mailbox by e-mail:

This and further information on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the work of the DFG is continuously up-dated at:


This text is available at
Externer Linkwww.dfg.de/en/research_funding/announcements_proposals/2021/info_wissenschaft_21_25
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