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Flexible Funds

The Center for International Cooperation funds the internationalization of research at Freie Universität Berlin through a set of measures tailor-made to the needs of FUB scientists and scholars. As part of these measures, the “Flexible Funds” program makes available funds for international research and teaching stays.

Goals of the Funding

The funding provided by this program serves to further the internationalization of Freie Universität Berlin, especially in the context of soliciting and establishing collaborative research with universities and non-university research institutes worldwide. Initiatives that serve the greater goals of the internationalization Freie Universität Berlin can include:

  • Proposing collaborative research projects with international partners
  • Preparation of joint applications for third-party funds for research or teaching projects with international partners
  • Establishing cooperative relationships with partners abroad
  • Travel with the goal of preparing joint publications
  • Liaison with Freie Universität alumni
  • Recruiting of international doctoral and post-doctoral candidates and scientists
  • Improvement of services for international students and scientists
  • Development of joint Master and PhD programs with international partner institutions

Fundable Initiatives

Initiatives eligible for funding are:

  • Research and teaching stays abroad for Freie Universität Berlin scientists with the goal of research proposals and establishment of collaborative relationships
  • Short-term stipends for foreign doctoral and post-doctoral candidates and scientists who are part of a long-term research cooperation
  • Meetings, conferences and summer schools of international renown that serve to develop new possibilities for cooperation (not full funding; co-financing)
  • International marketing and PR initiatives
  • International alumni activities
  • Efforts to support the internationalization of faculties and administration (e.g. translation services for examination regulations)
  • Test scholarships for prospective doctoral candidates of up to three months within which the candidate’s aptitude for doctoral studies will be tested. If the candidate is successful, an application for joint funding can be prepared


The application deadline for the flexible funding scheme is the 15th of every month. Project proposals should be submitted at least two months prior to the start of the planned project; we cannot guarantee a response to rushed funding applications.

Funding applications may be submitted by Freie Universität Berlin professors as well as heads of the central departments, university administration and libraries.

Please submit the application form along with further explanatory documents to Judith Winkler, 

Applicants are required to submit a project report to the Center for International Cooperation within six weeks of project completion. This report must clearly address the results of the goals set out in the application.

Restrictions and instructions

Ineligible for funding are:

  • Participation of individual scientists at international conferences and meetings that are not related to a concrete cooperative project can, as a general rule, not be funded.
  • Translation of scientific publications
  • Conference subsidies for doctoral candidates
  • Honoraria for scientists
  • Initiatives for which there are distinct CIC funding channels. This includes international workshops, travel abroad opportunities for scientific employees, establishing joint study programs and research projects with strategic partners (see links below).


  • In principle, the hosting of international conferences and meetings can only be subsidized, not fully funded. An appropriate contribution from external partners and attendees, for example in the form of attendance fees, is expected. The involvement of German participants (travel costs within Germany) cannot be financed. Touristic expenses are generally not eligible expenditures.
  • Catering can only be covered to a limited extent and only if it occurs within the framework of the conference (e.g. during breaks). When applying for funding of catering costs, please explain explicitly why cost coverage is necessary. Please note that the guidelines of Freie Universität Berlin regarding catering must be adhered to, the maximum rates may not be exceeded. The percentage of catering costs may not exceed 30% of the total funding of the Center for International Cooperation.
  • Stays abroad for doctoral candidates may only be funded if the stay is related to the establishment or support of a specific, faculty-supported, non-individual research project. Individual research trips cannot be funded.


Further funding possibilities for projects to support internationalization