Individual DFG Research funding

09-Dec-18, 09:50
Avatar for smailik007
posted about 1 month ago
At this moment I am a postdoc at the synchrotron in Germany. The main aim of the postdocs here is to help users to conduct their experiments and also to conduct their own research. My boss have said that it is hard to get the money for a research from the synchrotron unless they are not used for the beamline development. In this case I would like to get the Individual DFG Research funding. During my PhD studies I usually did theoretical work and performed experimental studies using analytical equipment. The materials we got from our collaborators. Now I would like to do synthesis of the similar materials by myself and analyse produced products by the synchrotron radiation. But I am little bit afraid of being unsuccessful in material synthesis because this area is new for me. What could I do in my case? Is it a good idea to get a funding for a risky area?
09-Dec-18, 20:57
edited about 7 seconds later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 1 month ago
Can you write the application to say that you know it is risky but you can address it? So that it sounds less risky and draws the attention to what you want to achieve. A lot of applications are risky but if you can address them appropriately it should be fine.

Though it would be better to ask other people who know that funding body better. There should be someone in your department who has applied before and has some experince with what they expect. As every funding body is different and we can only give generic advice.
10-Dec-18, 09:03
Avatar for Walter_Opera
posted about 1 month ago
I had a DFG postdoc fellowship. (This was, however, about 10 years ago.) Back then the expectation was that one had approx. a 50% chance of obtaining funding for an individual postdoc fellowship. As usual in academia, much of your success will be determined by your literary prowess. If you have a good story to tell in the application and your field is deemed somewhat worthy, you have a good chance of getting funded. At the end of the fellowship, you will be expected to write a final report summarizing your results. Once again, this is primarily a literary exercise - virtually any outome of a research effort can be presented as a useful result, unless all you did was burn down the lab. Of course, the final report will look a lot better if you can cite a few additional publications which were produced during your postdoc. At the end, you get a one-line letter telling you whether your project results were deemed "worthy of funding". Of course, your application and final report will be assessed by external reviewers, i.e., important professors in your field (and/or their grad students).

Evidently you are trying to become a professor (why else would one pursue a postdoc). In this context, there is a lot more that could be said about your approach here for obtaining funding. I can elaborate if you are interested.
10-Dec-18, 11:20
Avatar for smailik007
posted about 1 month ago
Dear rewt and Walter_Opera,
Thank you for your answers. So you suppose that it's common to ask the money for "new" things? In that case, at least, I can try to apply for a funding. Yes, I am absolutely interested about all information about the funding.


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