Doctoral scholarships at Universität Hamburg
Are you seeking doctoral funding? The University of Hamburg offers doctoral scholarships and grants of up to € 1.200 to (prospective) doctoral candidates studying at the University of Hamburg.
We are happy to assist you with any questions regarding our scholarship!
The application period for the scholarships according to the HmbNFG starting April 2023 runs from 21.11. - 02.12.2022.
For more information, please refer to the current call for applications (PDF).
You can apply in either April or October, funding will start six months later.
You must have graduated with above-average grades and intend to pursue your doctoral project at Universität Hamburg.
Please note: Do not apply for funding prior to having completed your master's degree (or Magister). Applications without transcripts will not be considered at the time of the conference of the election committee ZANF (central committee for the promotion of young scientists), which usually confers in June/July for October-scholarships and in January for April-scholarships.
HmbNFG-scholarships are open to all Hamburg students who meet the requirements. However, students of medicine (UKE) can only apply if their main topic for the doctoral study lies mainly within another faculty, such as medical psychology, pharmacy, biology, chemistry or physics. The standard procedure for students of medicine at the UKE is to write course-related doctoral theses.
Basic scholarship: Your university graduation should not date back more than one year. If your final exam is longer ago, chaces of receiving a scholarship are reduced. In special cases we may also consider applicants who graduated up to three years back (absolute max!), for instance, when family-related or health reasons have prevented you from continuing sooner.
Completion scholarship (alternative): You are a university graduate employed as a research associate at a University or research institution in Hamburg. Your employment period must not exceed 4 years (absolute max!).
Scholarship funding, generally granted for a year, should succeed employment immediately. Exceptions will be made for special cases. You may be allowed 4 years of employment plus 3 more years of work (absolute max!) if family-related reasons prevented you from continuing sooner.
In some faculties successful applicants will become members of the Graduate Schools of their faculties resp. have to apply for this membership. More information on this subject for you find in their doctoral regulations:
Funding cannot be granted if the applicant
- holds a doctorate
- receives or received funding for his doctoral project from a public or private source
- is still enrolled in a training or study course, e.g. teacher training course.
Important note! Your University graduation ought not date back more than one year from the beginning of the funding period.
Fellowship amount and funding period
The monthly fellowship amount is EUR 1200. Parenting fellows may be eligible for an additional EUR 154 for childcare. Verification for the latter has to be provided by the applicant.
Fellowships are granted for one year. Stipends maybe extended for an additional year. Completion fellowships cannot be extended!
If your spouse or husband is fully employed please inquire with the office about funding opportunities.
All revenues defined as income by German tax law will be set off against the fellowship sum; i.e. if your
- marital status is single and your annual after income taxt deduction exceeds EUR 7,669
- you are married and your annual income after income tax deduction exceeds EUR 12,271.
The above amounts increase by EUR 1,023 per year with each supported child. This calculation is based on the total income as defined by § 2 (1) and (2) of the Income Tax Act. (Compare: § 5 of the Hamburg Act for the Promotion of Young Researchers and Artists (HmbNFG).
Please use the forms under "Downloads" to apply; it is very important that you follow the above instructions on application procedure specifics.
You can only apply for extensions of stipends during the application period. Your application must comprise a research report and two expert reviews.
Before applying, please read the act und die bylaws (pdf, in German only). In special cases, do not hesitate to ask us!
Applicants should not apply without having taken all their exams. One working day before the awarding conference of ZANF (central commission for the promotion of young scientists-usually in January and Juni/July) all grades have to be handed in latest for being considered for the scholarships.
Applicants are responsible for the timely and complete submission of all requested documents! For formal reasons late applications will not be accepted. The date of online submission applies. Certificates and diplomas may be submitted within a one-week extended deadline - please enquire after the exact date!
Please address applications to:
Your application will be examined by the responsible departmental committees for young researchers' funding. All committees state their assessments of the individual candidates and their projects in a priority list. The final decision lies with the University's central committee for young researchers' funding (Zentraler Ausschuss für die Nachwuchsförderung, ZANF).
Chances of success
Twice a year we receive 60 applications; approximately 15 candidates are accepted. About 30 extensions are granted.
Extension requests are tied to the deadlines established in the call for applications. As a rule theses cover the complete months April and October.
The application deadline for extensions starting in October 2013 has expired.
The next call for fellowship extensions concerning April 2014 will be posted this October.
Fellows are permitted supplementary jobs that comprise 4 hours per week. Income from the4-hour outside activity will not be set off against the fellowship sum.
Material and travel costs
Per funding period material and travel costs up to EUR 1,023 can be reimbursed. This does not include expenses for books. Travel costs are granted according to the lowest level of the Hamburg Travel Cost Act (HmbRkG). The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) provides supplementary grants for periods abroad - covering 31 days to 12 months.
Please make sure to apply at least 4 weeks prior to your trip. Travel costs can only be reimbursed if you apply for support well in advance of your journey.
Requests for reimbursement of material and travel costs can be submitted at any time. If approved the University conducts reimbursements 4 times per annum (August; November; February; May). In urgent cases advance payments may be possible.
Supplementary grants for periods abroad from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)
Graduates and postdocs with German citizenship can apply for supplementary DAAD funding for research projects abroad. Funding can be granted for a maximum of 12 months aboad within the framework of the States' Graduate Funding program. More information can be obtained during our office hours.
Coaching for young researchers
You'll find helpful coaching, lectures and training here:
For scholarship holders in the humanities the Graduate School of Humanities offers doctoral candidates opportunities for academic exchance. More information at www.gwiss.uni-hamburg.de/einrichtungen/graduiertenschule.html
Universität Hamburg offers doctoral scholarships and grants pursuant to the Hamburg Act for the Promotion of Young Researchers and Artists (Hamburgisches Gesetz zur Förderung des wissenschaftlichen und künstlerischen Nachwuchses, HmbNFG, in German only).