Key Issues for Academia and Society (completed)

area of research: Humanities / Social Sciences
type of funding: research project
Academic of Legal History, Prof. Dr. Peter Oestmann, investigates torture as a signature of violence in cooperation with other scientists of different science areas (Photo: Lewandowski).


This funding initiative focusses on complex research issues which have the quality, significance, and relevance to make them “key issues” for research and society. More often than not, such issues call for cooperation between researchers with different expertise. The initiative thus aims at encouraging research groups from the humanities, cultural studies, and the social sciences to adopt new approaches to tackle such “key issues”.

The Foundation does not predefine key issues. It is up to the research groups applying for funding to make the case for their proposed research topics. An additional criterion is an integrative project design. The initiative is open to all disciplines and topics. Proposals will be selected in a comparative review process.

Scope of Funding (terminated)

The initiative addresses research groups in the humanities, cultural studies, and the social sciences. Partners from the areas of science and engineering are welcome. Funding will be made available to groups comprising two to max. five researchers at tone or more research institutions.

Details of conditions can be found under Information for Applicants (pdf).


The funding initiative was started in 1998 under the title “Key Issues for the Humanities”. In 2011 the initiative was modified to “Key Issues for Research and Society”.