... after PhD

German Thesis Award (Körber Foundation)

Every year, Körber-Stiftung presents the German Thesis Award to the best of young German researchers. We award prizes totalling more than € 100,000 for significant and innovative research, including three top prizes of € 25,000 each. This makes the German Thesis Award one of the most highly endowed prizes awarded to young scientists in the country. The competition is held under the auspices of Bundestag President Wolfgang Schäuble. In addition to academic excellence, the German Thesis Award particularly focuses on the broader social relevance of a particular piece of research. As such, the award encourages young scientists to underscore the value of their research to society and to discuss their work in public.


Knowledge of the German language is obligatory to apply for the German Thesis Award. The application essay as well as a presentation before the jury are in German. Additionally, participants need either to have German citizenship or to have earned their PhD from a German university.

Options for postdoctoral Fellowships in & outside Academia

Funding from DFG

Walter-Benjamin Postdoctoral fellowship (DFG)


By securing funding for their own research project, particularly qualified postdoctoral researchers pave the way for the next stages of their increasingly independent research career and exercise autonomy. The programme thus promotes early research careers with the aim of fostering the mobility and thematic development that are crucial in this career phase; therefore, the programme generally requires that the applicant change his or her research institution.

Individual Research Grants (DFG)


Research grants enable individuals who have completed their academic training (those holding a doctorate from all disciplines working at German research institutions) to conduct at any time research projects with clearly defined topics and durations, regardless of the subject.

Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Prize (DFG)


The Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Prize, named after the physicist and former president of the DFG, is a distinction for early career researchers and provides further incentive for excellent achievements in their research work. Ten prizes of €20,000 each. The prize is funded by the German Ministry of Education and Research.

All funding opportunities by the DFG


Other opportunities

Feodor-Lynen Fellowship (Alexander von Humboldt Foundation


If you missed the Life-after-PhD (LAP) seminar on 19 October 2021, you may request the recording. Please contact the coordinator.

For our students: Click here to access the ppt slides of the Feodor-Lynen Fellowship presentation

EMBO Long-term Postdoctoral fellowship (EMBO)


EMBO Postdoctoral Fellowships support excellent postdoctoral researchers throughout Europe and the world for a period of up to two years. International mobility is a key requirement.

Marie-Curie Postdoctoral fellowship in and outside academia (EU)


The objective of PFs is to support researchers’ careers and foster excellence in research. The Postdoctoral Fellowships action targets researchers holding a PhD who wish to carry out their research activities abroad, acquire new skills and develop their careers. PFs help researchers gain experience in other countries, disciplines and non-academic sectors. Interested researchers submit an application together with a host organisation, which can be a university, research institution, business, SME or other organisation based in an EU Member State or Horizon Europe Associated Country. All disciplines are eligible for Postdoctoral Fellowships, including research areas covered by the Euratom Research and Training Programme.

Human Frontiers Longterm or Cross-disciplinary Postdoctoral fellowship (HFSP)


The HFSP fellowship program supports proposals for frontier, potentially transformative research in the life sciences. Applications for high-risk projects are particularly encouraged. The projects should be interdisciplinary in nature and should challenge existing paradigms by using novel approaches and techniques. Scientifically, they should address an important problem or a barrier to progress in the field.


HFSP postdoctoral fellowships encourage early career scientists to broaden their research skills by moving into new areas of study while working in a new country.