Third-party funding at an all-time high

Goethe University raises around 233 million euros in additional funding / Increase in international fundraising particularly high

Goethe University increased its third-party funding by 17 percent in 2022. EU-funded projects saw the strongest growth: Their volume rose by 50% to 27.2 million.

Third-party funds, i.e. the funds a university acquires above and beyond its basic funding from the state and federal governments, are an important component of a university’s budget. Last year, Goethe University’s third-party funding saw across-the-board increases and came in at a total of €232.8 million, €33.9 million more than in 2021.

At €71.4 million, the largest single source of public third-party research funding was the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG). Projects funded by the federal and state governments rose from €45.2 million to €52.2 million in 2022, representing a year-on-year increase of 15 percent. Funding for cutting-edge research projects by the state of Hesse alone amounted to €18.5 million. That figure also includes funding for three cluster projects supported by the state of Hesse ahead of the application for the German federal and state governments’ Excellence Strategy.  

Particularly gratifying within the international context is the fact that the projects funded by the European Union (EU) increased by almost half to a volume of €27.2 million. All disciplines were able to attract new EU funding: Three ERC grants – highly competitive individual funding from the European Research Council – and three new European collaborative projects under Goethe University’s leadership resulted in a substantial increase in acquisitions.

Third-party funding from private sources totaled almost €60 million, up 22 percent. Of these, donations alone increased by 10 percent and came in at €10.3 million. Industry and legally independent foundations increased their funding by 35 percent to €25.6 million.

“The new record level of third-party funding is a testimony to Goethe University’s research strength and innovative power, as well as its increasing internationality. After all, the largest increase in third-party funding in 2022 came in against strong international competition in EU projects,” says Goethe University President Prof. Dr. Enrico Schleiff. “I would like to congratulate not only all our university researchers on this success, but also all employees who contribute to these scientific achievements.”

The general increase in third-party funding at Goethe University can be attributed to a large number of newly acquired small and large projects. Examples include the two newly launched DFG Collaborative Research Centers (Sonderforschungsbereich, SFB) in the life sciences – “Membrane-associated protein assemblies, machineries and supercomplexes ” (SFB 1507) and “Damage control by the stroma-vascular compartment” (SFB 1531) – as well as the newly established research unit (Forschungsgruppe 5417) on: “Translational polytrauma research to provide diagnostic and therapeutic tools for improving outcome”. In the humanities and social sciences, the Academy for Islam in Research and Society (AIWG) was able to successfully commence its second funding period.

Goethe University’s total budget came in at about €764.5 million in 2022.

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