Press Release No. 10 | March 31, 2021

Principles of Effective Career Support in Academia

DFG adopts recommendations on supporting researchers in early career phases / Creating better framework conditions for attractive careers in research

DFG adopts recommendations on supporting researchers in early career phases / Creating better framework conditions for attractive careers in research

As the largest research funding organisation and the central self-governing body for research in Germany, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) attaches great importance to promoting researchers at an early stage of their career and has established this as a statutory objective. At the recommendation of the Senate, the Joint Committee of the DFG has now adopted ten principles for the effective support of researchers in early career phases. The principles are intended as a guide for the DFG’s member institutions, as well as for all institutions and individuals that receive funding from the DFG to finance researchers in an early phase of their career. The principles form a supplement to the DFG’s Guidelines for Safeguarding Good Research Practice.

“The DFG aims to clearly convey to its members, applicants and reviewers how careers can be supported most effectively, providing them with guiding principles for this purpose,” said Vice President Professor Dr. Marlis Hochbruck, who was a key figure in the drafting of the principles. “In addition, the DFG seeks to use the recommendations as a way of helping to ensure that the appropriate measures and structures for supporting early career investigators are increasingly well established and ultimately become the norm.”

The ten principles of effective career support in research summarise what the framework conditions should be for early career investigators, in particular doctoral and postdoctoral researchers. By way of introduction, the DFG also outlines what measures it takes itself to support individuals who are at the start of their academic careers.

Hochbruck emphasised that there are already numerous institutions that offer excellent conditions for early career investigators in Germany. But he also said that there was a need for action. “The aim of the principles is to further improve the framework conditions and make research careers in Germany even more attractive,” says Hochbruck.

The principles are intended to serve as a guideline: the expectation is that addressees will consider them and take them on board in their areas of responsibility. The principles were developed with the participation of the DFG Senate, the Senate Committees for the Research Training Groups and the Collaborative Research Centres, and the DFG Head Office.

Further Information

Principles of effective career support in academia:

For detailed information on the topic of “Research Careers”, see:

The Code of Conduct “Guidelines on Safeguarding Good Research Practice” is available at:

Media contact:

Programme contact at the DFG Head Office:

  • Dr. Armin Krawisch
    Research Training Groups, Graduate Schools, Early Career Support
    Tel. +49 228 885-2424