DFG and WR welcome decisions by the federal and state governments on the further development of the Excellence Strategy
"A powerful signal for cutting-edge research"
The DFG and the WR have welcomed the decisions taken by the Joint Science Conference on the further development of the Excellence Strategy. The increase in funding from 2026 onwards and the possibility of funding up to 70 Clusters of Excellence and four additional Universities or University Consortia of Excellence send out a powerful signal in favour of strengthening top-level research, said DFG President Katja Becker and WR Chair Dorothea Wagner. The second round of the competition starts on 15 December with the call for proposals for Clusters of Excellence.
Commenting on today’s decisions taken by the Joint Science Conference (GWK) on the further development of the federal and state initiative to promote top-level research at universities (“Excellence Strategy”), the President of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation), Professor Dr. Katja Becker, and the Chair of the Wissenschaftsrat (WR, German Science and Humanities Council), Professor Dr. Dorothea Wagner, as Chairs of the Committee of Experts and the Excellence Commission, issue the following statement:
The DFG and the Wissenschaftsrat welcome today’s decisions by the Joint Science Conference (GWK) on the further development of the Excellence Strategy. The framework conditions for the second competition phase have now been established, and the tender and review procedures for both funding lines can start as planned.
Above all, the funding increase now agreed upon from 2026 onwards and the possibility of being able to fund up to 70 Clusters of Excellence in the future will mean that the momentum of competition provided by the Excellence Strategy can be maintained even in challenging times. It is also to be welcomed that the plan to fund up to four more Universities or University Consortia of Excellence in the next round is to remain in place. This is a clear signal in favour of science and the humanities and the further strengthening of top-level research at universities in Germany.
Following today’s meeting of the GWK, the Committee of Experts for the Excellence Strategy will now discuss the further elaboration of the resolutions on 30 November and 1 December. The call for proposals for the second competition phase of the Cluster of Excellence funding line is scheduled to be issued on 15 December. On the same day, a virtual information event to which eligible universities have already been invited will take place.
Head of Press and Public Relations at the DFG
Tel. +49 228 885-2233
Dr. Christiane Kling-Mathey
Head of Communications and Public Relations at the German Science
and Humanities Council (WR)
Tel. +49 221 3776-243
Contact persons at the DFG and WR Head Offices for the funding lines
Clusters of Excellence
Dr. Christine Petry
Head of the Excellence Strategy and Research Impulses Group
Tel. +49 228 885-235
Universities of Excellence
Dr. Inka Spang-Grau
Head of the Excellence Strategy Department
Tel. +49 221 3776-281
For detailed information on the Excellence Strategy, see also: