Apply for Doctoral scholarships in applied environmental research (Germany)

Some senior researchers at the Federal Foundation for the Environment (DBU) in Germany

Apply for Doctoral scholarships in applied environmental research (Germany)

Deadline: January 15, 2017


Are you a highly-qualified young researcher? Is your research related to the environmental situation in Germany? And will your work also contribute to solving international environmental and conservation problems? Then apply to the Federal Foundation for the Environment (DBU) for a doctoral scholarship. Every year, the DBU awards up to 60 doctoral scholarships to young researchers in all disciplines and of all nationalities who are working on a doctoral thesis that will advance research in the area of environmental protection and conservation.

Who can apply?

Requirements for applicants include the following:

  • doctoral thesis not yet started
  • above-average university degree
  • good command of German
  • highly topical doctoral thesis of considerable relevance to environmental protection and conservation

What form does funding take?

The doctoral scholarships are provided for a maximum period of three years. The scholarship provides for a monthly stipend of 1,500 euros. In addition to this stipend, a monthly sum of 210 euros is paid to cover any material and travel costs. Scholarship holders with children can receive a child allowance.


Dissertation Fellowships

The DBU grants

  • 60 dissertation fellowships per year,
  • for young scientists of all disciplines,
  • for advanced research work in the field of environmental protection.

A selection committee, composed of professors of different disciplines,
decides on successful candidates twice a year.


Basic Conditions for a DBU dissertation fellowship are:

  • You have not yet started your doctoral thesis.
  • An institutional support is excluded as also a concentration on a larger range of topics (pooling of individual applications) without prior reconciliation with DBU.
  • Incomplete and late applications (received after the deadline) cannot be considered.
  • We clearly welcome subjects of international importance. The work, however, has to be done mainly in Germany, with a clear reference to the German environmental situation.
  • The application must be written in German.
  • We expect good skills of German from foreign applicants to allow their integration into the DBU scholars’ network.
  • Besides an above-average degree, the chosen topic is expected to be of high relevance and should contribute to solving problems in environmental and conservation efforts.
  • Generally, all environmental issues are welcome who meet the above-mentioned criteria, i.e. in addition to the natural sciences and engineering, also applications from the social sciences, humanities, economics and law. Interdisciplinary topics that support sustainable development are especially welcome.
  • The complexity of environmental problems requires interdisciplinary collaboration between different scientific disciplines. Therefore, DBU would like to support young researchers with its scholarship programme with as many different environmental issues and in various fields. In terms of this target range of themes, DBU expects that each workgroup and/or scientific supervisor submits not more than one application per selection round.
  • The DBU attaches great importance to a transparent work plan and timetable, which, together with the tutor’s statement, clearly show that the work can be completed in a period of up to three years.
  • The refusal of an application excludes from further attempts.

Apply for a DBU dissertation fellowship!

The procedure is done in 3 steps:

  1. Check the basic conditions
    Please note first the basic conditions on the page Förderleitlinien for a DBU fellowship.
    You can save a lot of time and work!
  2. Register
    Follow the online registration process
    (only available in German)
  3. Complete all required fields
    Make sure that you submit your written documents (including diplomas, certificates ,…) and your consent form, INDICATING YOUR REFERENCE NUMBER, after the online application by regular mail!


Contact the Scholarship Programme


An der Bornau 2
49090 Osnabrück

T: ++49 541 9633 0
F: ++49 541 9633 193


Kunlere Idowu

Kunlere is an environment and sustainable development strategist with years of active experience in environmental compliance monitoring and enforcement. You may follow him on Twitter via @kunlere_idowu


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