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Fellowship Program

Returning Fellow Scholarship

The Leopoldina fellowship program’s returning fellow scholarship gives former Leopoldina scholarship recipients the opportunity to plan their future scientific careers.

Through project preparation, application, fundraising and job search, scholarship holders should work on pursuing their own careers during this interim period. The scholarship can be used to provide returnees with financial and professional support for a period of up to 12 months. However, the desired habilitation during this period is not a reason for funding.

Application requirements

  • This program is aimed exclusively at scientists who have previously received Leopoldina postdoc scholarships.
  • Applications may be submitted at any time, at the latest two years after expiry of the Leopoldina postdoc scholarship.
  • Applications are submitted jointly by the interested researchers and the host institution.
  • The selected scientific institution in Germany confirms its willingness to accept funding on the following conditions.
  • Applicants must return to Germany from abroad in order to be granted funding.
  • The funded postdoctoral project must be successfully completed and a final report must be prepared. This report and any first publications shall be submitted in order to document the outstanding results of the research activities during the postdoctoral project.
  • The submitted application must be brief and contain information concerning the field of work and a basic work schedule for the period requested.

Other application requirements

  • The host institution agrees to provide the necessary infrastructure for the realization of the project outlined in the application.
  • The host institution will not entrust the fellows with any other official tasks during the returning fellowship period.
  • Returnees must be entitled to submit applications to the German funding organizations for their own research projects (DFG, Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, etc.).


  • The returnee scholarship is awarded as a domestic scholarship. The amount corresponds to the age-related basic scholarship of the postdoctoral scholarship.
  • For children up to the age of 18, an additional child allowance is paid in form of a monthly lump sum. For the first child €400 per month and for each additional child €100 per month are granted.
  • To cover travel expenses and project-related material expenses (consumables), a monthly payment of €250 is made in addition to the scholarship.
  • The amount of the scholarships and surcharges is based on the applicable rates for postdoctoral/research scholarships of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation). The respective funding amounts will be changed if the DFG or the Federal Foreign Office redefines the funding rates used.




PD Dr. Andreas Clausing

Coordinator of the Fellowship Programme

Phone 0345 47 239 - 150
Fax 0345 47 239 - 139
E-Mail andreas.clausing (at)leopoldina.org