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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 post-doctoral candidates 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
  • International marketing and PR initiatives
  • International alumni activities

Application process

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

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.

Please submit the application form along with further explanatory documents to Hans-Martin Meis, hans-martin.meis@fu-berlin.de 

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.


Members of Freie Universität going abroad: For an estimation of daily and accommodation allowances that can be applied for, please consult the standards of the German Travel Expenses Act. In case of approval, the exact sum of the funding will be calculated by the department for travel expenses.

Invitations of international scholars to Freie Unversität: In case of approval, the CIC can cover accommodcation costs of up to 80€ per person and night. Please note that daily allowances and salaries/fees will not be covered.

Restrictions and instructions

Please note that the Center for International Cooperation will evaluate your application thoroughly. In case of approval, you will receive the agreed upon funding; however, the CIC cannot partake in the organization or execution of the approved project.

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
  • Expenses for participating scientists from other German universities or research institutions (participation is possible, however, expenses must be covered at own charge) 
  • Initiatives for which there are distinct CIC funding lines. This includes international workshops, test scholarships for prospective international PhD students, and research projects with strategic partners.


  • Catering can only be covered to a limited extent (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.