The Cen­tral Re­se­arch Fund (ZFF)

The Central Research Fund (ZFF) was established with the decision of the Presidential Board P/129 of 16 July 2020. It comprises seven funding lines, each with its own target group and focus, including the promotion of young researchers or the development of new research areas. Scientists who are planning to apply for third-party funding are to receive targeted support in this way. Depending on the funding line, funding is provided for both material and personnel costs.

The dif­fe­rent fun­ding li­nes at a glan­ce:

Fun­ding of co­ope­ra­ti­on with the Kunst­hochschule

GoalThe "KOOP" funding line is intended to deepen the interdisciplinary cooperation between the University of Kassel and the Kunsthochschule.
FocusThe focus of the funded projects should be on working on a topic over a period of one year, from which opportunities for longer-term cooperation arise.
Target GroupAll researchers at the University of Kassel who are planning an interdisciplinary project in collaboration with the Kunsthochschule are eligible to apply.  At least one PI must be a member of the Kunsthochschule.
Scope of fundingThe maximum funding amount is 10,000 €, which can be used exclusively for material costs and to finance auxiliary staff. The maximum duration for projects is one year.
Application processApplications must be submitted via Converis.
Application deadlineThe deadline for applications is 1 November; if there are remaining funds, a further application is possible by 1 May.
Selection criteria 
  •  Scientific quality of the funding application
  • Promotion of young researchers
  • Contribution of the research project to further strengthening the focus of the University of Kassel
  • Potential of the project to establish long-term interdisciplinary cooperation with the art academy
  • Contribution of the proposal to the promotion of new research topics
 

 

Fun­ding of in­di­vi­du­al ap­p­li­ca­ti­ons for the pre­pa­ra­ti­on of third-par­ty fun­ding pro­jects

GoalThe project funding line is intended to support researchers in the preparation of individual applications to third-party funding bodies.
FocusThe focus of the funded projects should be on working on a topic over the course of a year, which will result in a promising individual proposal to a third-party funding body.
Target GroupResearchers at the University of Kassel in the second and third qualification phase (R2 + R3) are eligible to apply.
Scope of fundingThe maximum funding amount is 10,000 €, which can be used exclusively for material costs and to finance auxiliary staff. The maximum duration for projects is one year.
Application processApplications must be submitted via Converis.
Application deadline 1 May / 1 November
Selection criteria 
  • Scientific quality of the funding proposal
  • Potential for attracting further third-party funding to ensure permanent financing
  • Promotion of young researchers
  • Contribution of the research project to further strengthening the focus of the University of Kassel
  • Contribution of the proposal to the promotion of new research topics 
 

 

Fun­ding of col­la­bo­ra­ti­ve pro­jects

GoalThe "Nucleus" funding line supports collaborative projects that advance the thematic focus in accordance with the University of Kassel's development plan and thus contribute to medium-term excellence.
Focus


The focus of the funded projects should be on working on a topic within 18 to 36 months, with the aim of submitting an outline for funding for a collaborative project (e.g. SFB/TRR) in the last year of funding.

Target GroupProfessors at the University of Kassel are eligible to apply in consortia in which the University of Kassel is the lead institution.
Scope of fundingThe maximum funding amount is 70,000 € per year, which can be freely distributed between personnel and material costs.
Application processApplications are submitted via Converis.
Application deadline15 May / 15 October
Selection criteria 
  • Scientific quality of the funding proposal
  • Potential for attracting further third-party funding to ensure permanent financing
  • Promotion of young researchers
  • Contribution of the research project to further strengthening the focus of the University of Kassel
  • Contribution of the proposal to the promotion of new research topics 
 

 

Fun­ding for ex­cel­lence and young ta­lent pro­gram­mes

GoalThe "Individually qualified" funding line  aims to support promising proposals for individual excellence and junior researcher programmes (esp. DFG Emmy Noether, BMBF Junior Research Groups; Volkswagen Foundation Freigeist; ERC SG, ERC AG).
FocusThe focus of the funded projects should be on working on a topic within one year in order to submit a promising funding application in one of the above-mentioned programmes during the project period.
Target GroupResearchers (especially in the second and third qualification phase R2 + R3) who would like to locate their externally funded project at the University of Kassel are eligible to apply.  The preparatory first funding year can only be applied for by researchers at the University.
Scope of funding

A maximum of 20,000 € will be funded in the year of application, which can be used for material costs. If the external funding is successfully approved, additional funds of up to 200,000 € can be made available. These can be used flexibly, e.g. to finance material and personnel costs within the framework of the funded project or for the continued employment of the applicant after the end of the external funding. A decision on the use of the funds must be made in advance of the application.

Application processThe application is submitted via Converis; for external applicants, the application for the qualification position is submitted via the Research Service.
Application deadlineApplications for a preparatory funding year can be submitted by 15 May and 15 October. An application for the additional qualification position is submitted independently of this via the Research Service in advance of the submission of the application for third-party funding.
Selection criteria 
  • Scientific quality of the funding proposal
  • Potential for acquiring additional third-party funding to ensure permanent financing
  • Promotion of young researchers
  • Contribution of the research project to further strengthening the focus of the University of Kassel
  • Contribution of the proposal to the promotion of new research topics 
 

Pro­mo­ti­on of ex­plo­ra­to­ry ba­sic re­se­arch

GoalThe "Pilot" funding line supports projects and Blue Sky initiatives that aim to explore fundamentally new and under-researched areas that lie outside existing research directions or scientific paradigms.
FocusThe focus of the funded projects should be on working on fundamentally new and hitherto little-researched topics over a period of 6-18 months, with the aim of developing a promising funding proposal.
Target GroupAll professors at the University of Kassel are eligible to apply.
Scope of fundingThe maximum funding amount is 100,000 €. This can be freely divided between material and personnel costs.
Application processApplications must be submitted via Converis.
Application deadline15 May / 15 October
Selection criteria 
  • Scientific quality of the funding application
  • Potential for attracting further third-party funding to ensure permanent financing
  • Promotion of young researchers
  • Contribution of the research project to further strengthening the focus of the University of Kassel
  • Contribution of the proposal to the promotion of new research topics  
  • Originality and innovative content of the project
  • Scientific and technological contribution to a long-term research vision
  • Possible gain in knowledge of the project in case of failure
 

 

Fun­ding for ex­ter­nal coa­ching

GoalThe aim of this funding line is to focus the development of outlines for third-party funded collaborative projects in a targeted manner through external coaching and thus to promote coherence in the proposal.
FocusThe focus of the funding is on conducting proposal workshops with external coaching, involving the research service in the workshop and in the resulting funding proposal.
Target GroupProfessors in planned consortia led by the University of Kassel
Scope of fundingThe maximum funding amount is 5,000 € to finance a coach and conference and travel expenses.
Application processApplications must be submitted via the Research Service with reference to existing preliminary work.
Application deadline

Applications can be submitted at any time.

Selection criteria 
  • Scientific quality of the funding application
  • Potential for attracting further third-party funding to ensure permanent financing
  • Promotion of young researchers
  • Contribution of the research project to further strengthening the focus of the University of Kassel
  • Contribution of the proposal to the promotion of new research topics 
 

 

Fun­ding for col­la­bo­ra­ti­ve sket­ches

GoalThe aim of the funding is to support pre-proposals (SFB/TRR/GRK) in the full proposal phase in order to ensure a promising review and - in the case of approval - a rapid project start.
FocusThe focus of the funding is on the intensive work on a topic to develop a promising full proposal for the planned funding line up to the start of the funded project.
Target Group

Professors in consortia led by the University of Kassel

Scope of fundingThe maximum funding amount is 150,000 € per project. This can be used to (further) finance personnel and material costs.
Application processApplications must be submitted via the Research Service and include the outline recommended for full proposals and corresponding proof from the funding body.
Application deadlineApplications can be submitted at any time.
Selection criteria 
  • Scientific quality of the funding proposal
  • Potential for acquiring further third-party funding to ensure permanent financing
  • Promotion of young researchers
  • Contribution of the research project to further strengthening the focus of the University of Kassel
  • Contribution of the proposal to the promotion of new research topics 
 

Information events on the Cen­­tral Re­­se­­arch Fund (ZFF)

The Central Research Fund, the programme lines and the awarding procedure are regularly presented in information events by the Research Service.

The next events will take place in mid-July and mid-August 2021. Details and registration links for the Zoom sessions will be posted here in due course.

De­ci­si­on pro­ce­du­re

The Research Commission deliberates on all funding applications - with the exception of the program lines Bridge and Focus. For some projects (e.g. Nucleus, Pilot), a personal presentation of the proposal by the PIs to the commission is necessary in order to ensure a good presentation of the project and to give the commission members the opportunity to ask questions. Following the review, the commission submits a funding recommendations for each program line to the University's Presidential Board. Once the Presidential Board has taken a formal decision to award the grant, the project may commence.


For all procedures advised by the commission, the research service prepares short reports, which are made available to the applicants via the research information portal Converis.

Re­porting re­qui­re­ment

Funding from the ZFF is associated with a reporting obligation. For one-year projects, a report must be submitted on the research information portal Converis after the end of the funding period. For projects with a duration beyond 12 months, there is also an obligation to submit annual interim reports with further funds only to be released once the report on the previous year has been received. A reminder to submit the annual or final report is automatically released via Converis.

FAQ's

Over­view of ques­ti­ons and an­s­wers re­la­ted to the Cen­tral Re­se­arch Fund (ZFF)

For further questions regarding the individual program lines, please contact the Research Service team.