DFG loosens eligibility requirements for the Emmy Noether Programme


Final funding period for the 'Action Plan in Computer Science'

Five years after the establishment of the Emmy Noether Programme to promote outstanding young researchers, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation, DFG) has made the eligibility requirements more flexible. In this way it aims to ensure that outstanding young researchers' individual career paths can be better taken into consideration. The Action Plan in Computer Science (Aktionsplan Informatik), which is part of the Emmy Noether Programme, intended to enable young researchers to qualify for a professorship rapidly after completing their doctorate, entered its final funding period with the meeting of the Grants Committee responsible for it, which took place in December 2004.

The measures for modernisation of the Emmy Noether Programme decided upon by the DFG's Joint Committee include greater flexibility in the interpretation of the eligibility requirements for all applications. At least twelve months of substantial research experience abroad and scientific independence, generally demonstrated by two years of postdoctoral experience, are required. In addition to this, personal selection interviews are being introduced and the age limit is being replaced by a regulation that allows approval for the programme with up to four years of postdoctoral experience. The funding period of the Emmy Noether Programme usually lasts for five years. This period no longer includes the two-year research visit abroad, which has so far been "Phase I" of the programme, but rather applies purely to work within the Independent Junior Research Group. Phase I has now been merged with the funding instrument "Research Fellowship".

The DFG is once again establishing five Independent Junior Research Groups in the Action Plan in Computer Science. The programme, launched in 2002, aims to counter the current lack of junior scientists to fill future university lecturer positions in computer science by providing particularly qualified young computer scientists with an attractive route to attaining academic independence soon after finishing their doctorate. The Steering Committee and reviewers have confirmed the programme's success. Three leaders of Independent Junior Research Groups funded since the beginning of 2003 have already been appointed as professors (Andreas Butz from Saarbrücken to Munich, Rolf Niedermeier from Tübingen to Jena and Mareike Schoop from Aachen to Hohenheim). Negotiations on further appointments are currently underway.

The Grants Committee for the Emmy Noether Programme decided to establish nine new Independent Junior Research Groups. The DFG is currently funding more than 200 researchers in Independent Junior Research Groups as part of the Emmy Noether Programme.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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