Our Guiding Principles
Science is our passion.
The Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds (BIF) is a public foundation - an independent, non-profit organization for the exclusive and direct promotion of basic research in biomedicine. We support up-and-coming junior scientists whose research projects experimentally elucidate the basic phenomena of human life, and organize two International Titisee Conferences per year. We are convinced that great scientific ideas and developments need a stimulating context, freedom and a sound financial fundament. At BIF, we do our best to provide all these for our fellows in our programmes.
The Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds awards PhD fellowships to outstanding junior scientists who wish to pursue an ambitious PhD project of approximately 3 years in basic biomedical research in an internationally leading laboratory. For further details please refer to “Who can apply?”. The peer-review-based selection process is highly competitive. Applicants should therefore be outstanding in all three selection criteria.
To promote basic research in biomedicine by providing the best young, up-and-coming scientists with comprehensive support during their PhD phase.
More than a monthly stipend
The fellowship comprises a competitive monthly stipend that is initially granted for 2 years and that can be extended for up to another 12 months. Participation in international scientific conferences is also supported. In addition, fellowship holders are offered personal support, seminars to discuss their projects, communication training and alumni meetings, and thus can become part of a worldwide network.
Conditions for PhD Fellowships
The Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds must be notified if an application is submitted to any other research-sponsoring institution. Should an applicant take up an award from another institution prior to the decision of the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds, the application to the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds is considered withdrawn, and the foundation must be notified immediately.
Please note that only written notification is legally binding and that the decisions of the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds are incontestable. The fellowship expires if not taken up within 6 months of notification.
On accepting the PhD fellowship, the fellowship holder agrees to the following conditions:
The Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds does not intervene in the work of fellows who, in turn, are obligated to make proper use of the allocated funds. Each fellow must devote his/her whole energy to his/her particular PhD project. In the laboratory, fellows should only be assigned to tasks directly connected to their PhD projects.
If a fellow decides to change the topic of the PhD project or the laboratory, he/she must inform the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds without delay. In the event of the project being successfully completed prior to expiry of the fellowship, payment will be discontinued.
The basic monthly stipend amounts to 1,550 euros. In the United Kingdom, a further 1,000 euros, in the USA and Denmark, a further 800 euros, in Australia, Israel, and Canada, a further 500 euros, in Switzerland, a further 1,700 euros, and in Austria, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden, a further 200 euros are added as a country-related premium. Depending on the cost of living, all other countries are grouped into one of these categories. In most countries, fellows are paid an additional flat rate of 150 euros per month to cover premiums for personal insurance and minor project-related costs (books, travel expenses, etc.). For example, the monthly stipend for an unmarried fellow working in Germany amounts to 1,900 euros, in the USA to 2,500 euros, in the United Kingdom to 2,700 euros, and in Switzerland to 3,400 euros. A spouse allowance, child allowance and/or childcare allowance may be added. The stipend is transferred to the fellow's personal bank account by the middle of each month.
Tuition, bench fees and overheads are not reimbursed by the foundation.
The fellowship is intended to cover the living expenses of the recipient. A Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds stipend may therefore not be held while receiving a regular personal income from any other institution or research institute. Any employment or other contracts yielding a regular income must be cancelled upon accepting the PhD fellowship. However, an additional fellowship from another institution to cover exclusively tuition fees may be accepted. Please contact the foundation under these circumstances.
The initially awarded stipend sum is based on the information provided in the application. The fellowship holder is obligated to inform the foundation about any changes in his/her personal or financial circumstances (change of marital status, income of spouse, etc.) so that the foundation can adjust the size of the stipend.
Fellowships awarded by the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds do not constitute any form of employment. In Germany (EstG §3 No. 44) and in countries that maintain a double-taxation agreement with Germany, fellowships are exempt from tax. A fellowship is not considered to be remuneration as defined by Article 14 of the German Social Law IV and is therefore not liable to social insurance. Provision of laws governing formation of capital, saving premiums and residential building premiums do not apply. The Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds does not provide any kind of insurance for its fellowship holders. They must insure themselves and their families against any possible costs and consequences caused by illness, accident, personal liability, etc.
In the event of illness, the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds continues payments for 2 months, after which time assistance would cease. Upon recovery, the fellowship may be extended by the period of absence due to illness.
Fellowship holders are expected to supply reprints of all publications prepared with the foundation's assistance. Furthermore, they must present a project report for publication in FUTURA, the foundation's international journal, at the beginning of the fellowship and a final report no later than 2 months after the PhD examination (defence).
The Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds reserves the right to reclaim any surplus payment or money paid in error. Furthermore, the foundation may cancel the fellowship and demand repayment if the fellowship was obtained under false pretences or not used for its intended purpose, if the obligation to submit the final report is not fulfilled, or for any other sound reason.
To process the fellowship holders' applications and to provide continuous support, the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds gathers and electronically stores the data submitted by applicants. These data include personal information (name, address, date of birth, nationality, phone numbers and e-mail addresses of the fellowship holders) as well as information on the PhD project and the support granted.
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