06A Exploration Projects on New Topics

Call of the Central Research Development Fund (CRDF)

Exploration projects are projects of individual professors: Innovative projects with high risk are generously provided with resources, can be processed without strict specifications and with sufficient time. The goal is to explore new areas of research.

This individual funding shall enable professors to persue issues that do not fit easily into the joint research programs of collaborative research.

WHO CAN APPLY? Professors conducting full-time research at the University of Bremen. The Rectorate expressly encourages female professors in particular to apply.

WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS? Exploration projects serve the purpose of tackling an innovative question, explore new research areas or develop new methods. Because of their explorative character, extensive preliminary work is not required. The aim is to create international publications in high-ranking journals with an original approach to topics not previously covered by the applicant and – in subjects in which monographs continue to be the standard – among renowned publishers.

FUNDING CONDITIONS: Each exploration project will be granted up to 90,000 Euro per year for a period of two years (option 1) or with a fulltime Postdoc position and up to 30,000 Euro in total for a period of two years (option 2). The funds can be used freely, for example for devices, guests from abroad, and student assistants or for the financing of a replacement for a research sebattacal (one semester during the project only). Any previously approved exploration project has to be completed before applying for a new one.

PROCEDURE: Within the framework of the Central Research Development Fund two exploration projects can be funded. Projects in funding line 06 A “Exploration Projects on New Topics” as well as “Interdisciplinary Exploration Projects” of funding line 06 B are considered together. An Interdisciplinary Commission makes the selection in a competitive process. The Commission is made up of members of the University‘s Research Funding Committees for the Natural Sciences and Engineering and for Social Sciences and Humanities. Based of external reviews the Interdisciplinary Commission recommends suitable projects to the Rectorate of the University for decision. Calls for this funding line are planned every two years.

Deadline for Application

No call in 2023


Guidelines for Applicants


Application Form

The University of Bremen supports the Open Researcher and Contributor ID (ORCID). ORCID is a free, not-for-profit service offering each researcher a unique digital identifier. This helps researchers to distinguish their work and helps funders link researcher output to funding.  If you apply for CRDF funding, we will ask for your ORCID identifier. 
If you have no ID yet, please visit ORCID.


Natural Sciences and Engineering

Corinna Volkmann
Phone +49 421 218-60321 E-Mail
Building SFG, Room 3130

Social Sciences and Humanities

Petra Schreiber
Phone +49 421 218-60319 E-Mail
Building SFG, Room 3230

Criteria for the assessment of applications

The Interdisziplinary Commission and the Rectorate of the University of Bremen decide on applications based on the following criteria:

  •  Originality in the sense of a risk project
  •  Potential for “scientific breakthrough” with regard to the state of research
  •  Coherent outline of the approach
  •  Potential gain in knowledge and relevance of the findings
  •  Recognizable differentiation to previous own work
  •  Previous scientific achievements of the applicant