Volkswagen Foundation: 60 years of science funding

Since the start of its activities 60 years ago, the Foundation has made a total of EUR 5.5 billion available for its purpose of promoting “the advancement of the sciences and technology in research and higher education” (Section 2 of the Statutes). This has enabled future-oriented research projects and other scientific ventures to be realized: in Germany and around the world. The Volkswagen Foundation stands for innovation and risk-taking; it places particular emphasis on interdisciplinarity and internationality. The realigned funding strategy comprises three profile areas: "Exploration", "Knowledge about Knowledge - Reflection and Practice of Science" and "Social Transformations".

At the Festival of Science ten of the more than 33,000 projects funded over 60 years presented their work: Among other things, there were a moon rover, a cow toilet, dinosaur fossils from the Harz Mountains and the Costa Rican rainforest in virtual reality. The enthusiasm of the researchers for their topics was transmitted to the audience of all ages, so that their stands were always densely crowded. The talks by professors and science communicators in the large auditorium also attracted many interested listeners, who were happy to take the opportunity to ask questions in smaller groups afterwards. 

Video: Scenes of the Festival of Science

Video Titel