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Career in research

Regardless of whether you work in the research department of a company, are part of a research project team or have been teaching at a university for many years, Germany offers numerous opportunities for advancing your career in research.

Visiting professorship at a university

As a visiting professor, you have the opportunity of teaching and doing research at a German university for a limited span of time. A visiting professorship is advantageous for all those involved: the university students get the benefit of your specialist knowledge and your intercultural perspective. At a German university, you yourself can gain new experience and acquire new knowledge and methods that provide impetus for your own work, while at the same time helping research institutes and international qualified professionals to work more closely together. The Research in Germany Web site explains the different forms a visiting professorship at a German university may take.

Applying for a permanent teaching post at a university

Of course, you can also apply for a vacant post at a German university. Many universities are looking for more international staff. In 2013, more than 38,000 foreign research staff were employed by German universities. Why don’t you seize the opportunity and apply?

You can also combine a post of research assistant with a doctoral thesis. You will find information about doing a doctorate in Germany here. If you already have a doctorate, you can apply for a professorship in Germany. You can find out more on the Research in Germany platform.

Applying for a post in the R&D department of a company

How important research and development are for German businesses can be seen from the rising number of employees in these departments: in 2012, there were 367,000 full-time posts in corporate research & development – 10,000 more posts than in 2011. And this trend is set to continue. This is why international scientists have good prospects of finding a post in a German company.

There is demand for qualified professionals particularly in fields where there are insufficient numbers of qualified applicants in Germany. These include engineers and IT specialists. We explain how to find a job in R&D in German industry and what you need to know about visas and finances here.

If you are interested in a research activity in the German industry do also visit the Research in Germany portal.

International research and partnership projects

Numerous international research and partnership projects are based in Germany. In Europe, there are a number of programmes that fund this kind of partnership. One of these is the Eureka initiative, which supports cross-border, application-focused research projects in industry and academia in the European Union. With 1,277 projects either completed or in progress, Germany is involved in over one-quarter of all Eureka programmes. You can find out about current international projects in Germany on the Kooperation International platform.

Information on the internet

Research in Germany

Information on doctoral studies and research in Germany (i.a. German, English, Spanish, French)

Guide for international postdocs and experienced researchers (PDF) (English)


Germany’s universities of Excellence

Information about the Excellence Initiative and top-level research (German, English)

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