Fit for a career in academia

Argelander Grant Starter-Kit (B) “Research Funds“

As part of the „Argelander Program for Early-Career Researchers - Reaching for the Stars“, the University of Bonn awards Argelander Grants for the start of the postdoc phase in the funding line "Starter-Kit B - Research Funds“. The aim of the funding is to prepare postdocs at the University of Bonn for the start of an academic career in the transitional phase after the doctorate and to support them in the acquisition of third-party funding. The funding includes material resources for research activities in preparation of a third-party funding proposal as well as a comprehensive consultation program.

Annual Deadlines:

March 15, June 15 and October 15

The earliest possible funding start date is six weeks after the respective deadline.

Funding conditions

Any postdoctoral researcher employed at the University of Bonn on a temporary basis can apply for this grant[1], except for members or affiliates of the Faculty of Medicine/UKB.[2]

Applicants must have completed their doctorate within the last three years; the date of last exam applies here.[3]

During the funding period, applicants should prepare a third-party funding proposal that, in case of approval, will be carried out at the University of Bonn.

Female postdocs are explicitly encouraged to apply under this funding line. 

[1] The applicant should be able to present an employment contract at the University of Bonn for the entire funding period applied for or, alternatively, the institute's binding confirmation of an intended extension of the employment relationship. 
[2] Postdoctoral fellows in medicine are funded through the School of Medicine's BONFOR program.
[3] Justified exceptional cases such as family responsibilities, parental leave, illness etc., will of course be taken into account. Likewise, up to 12 months can be recognized for pandemic-related delays or interruptions in previous research projects (see, for instance, DFG-Guidelines).  Please explain any delays or interruptions in your application. If the oral exam has not been taken yet, please include proof of when the exam is scheduled. Start of funding is only possible afterwards.

For a maximum period of two years, material resources can be requested for research activities related to the planned third-party funding proposal and the preparation of the proposal itself.

The funding also includes an accompanying consultation program in preparation of an academic career and third-party funding proposal. The program offers:

  • Workshop on writing third-party funding proposals (participation is strongly recommended)
  • Coaching on proposal writing, consisting of three modules (participation in at least one module is mandatory)
  • Optional individual coaching 

Depending on requirements, up to €25.000 may be awarded to cover:

  • Student Assistants (SHK) oder Graduate Student Assistants (WHF) - calculation tool is available here.
  • Material costs/disposables
  • Travel expenses
  • Further material costs 

Please note that funds intended to cover core support (Grundausstattung) common for the respective research area will not be approved.

In case of approval of the third-party funding application, additional material funds of up to €10.000 can be requested for a further 12 months, provided that the position resulting from the third-party funding application is taken up at the University of Bonn and no corresponding material funds are made available by the third-party funding provider.

Applicants with child(ren) up to 12 years of age or family members in need of care may, in justified cases, apply for funds – in addition to the funding amount applied for of a maximum of 25,000€ - for hiring a student assistant (SHK or WHF) with up to 15 hours per week for a maximum of one year. The aim is to create free space for your own research by supporting the preparation and implementation of (online) teaching or other scientific work (regardless of the project applied for under this call).

Please explain your specific situation in your application and list funds requested for this purpose separately in your budget.

  • Relevance of the grant for the applicant's academic career
  • Quality and relevance of the research project with regard to the planned application for third-party funding
  • Academic CV

Applications will be reviewed by an interdisciplinary selection committee consisting of representatives from all faculties involved, chaired by Prof. Dr. Andreas Zimmer, Vice Rector for Research and Early-Career Researchers.

Applications must be submitted electronically to the Bonn Graduate Centre (BGC) using the application form linked on this page.

The application should include:

  • Letter of motivation including the bullet points listed in the template provided (max. 2 pages):
    • Career goals and career development plan for the time during and after the Argelander Starter-Kit Grant, including achievements to date,
    • Relevance of the proposed research project for the third-party funding application,
    • Reason for choosing the funding organization and the funding measure as well as relevance of the third-party funding application for the academic career of the applicant. 
  • Financial plan for the planned expenditure of the requested funds, including time schedule and justification of the volume with regard to the planned third-party funding application and the research project (max. 1 page).
  • Tabular overview of milestones
  • Scientific outline of your research project (max. 3 pages, incl. figures and excl. references) with the bullet points listed below, using the template provided:
    • Scientific and societal relevance,
    • Research question/hypothesis,
    • Methodology and work plan,
    • Open science strategy

Please note that the project outline should be comprehensible to reviewers without expertise in your field.

  • Academic CV, including publications.
  • Employment contract with the University of Bonn (valid for the whole funding period); alternatively, applicants may provide binding commitment to extend employment.

Please notice the above mentioned earliest possible funding start date.


Avatar Radu

Dr. Robert Radu

Bonn Graduate Center (BGC)

Funded by the Federal and State Governments as part of the German Excellence Strategy
© …

Read also


Learn more about our diverse offerings, from good scientific practice to our Doctorate plus and Postdoc plus qualification programmes.

Good Research Practice

Learn more about scientific integrity and responsibility in research.

News and Events

Find out what's new and what events are coming up.

Wird geladen