A competitive program for excellent women researchers from the entire spectrum of Austrian basic research: The Elise Richter program is aimed at women in the senior postdoc phase of their careers and helps them gain the qualifications needed for top academic positions at national and international research institutions. As part of the reform of its career development programs, the FWF has been offering a new funding program for advanced postdocs from July 2024: the FWF ASTRA Awards replaced Elise Richter. For more information, please see the FWF ASTRA Awards program page.

Target group

The funding program is aimed at highly qualified women researchers* in all disciplines who aspire to an academic career (for Arts-Based Research, please see Elise Richter PEEK).

* Individuals with a registered civil status of diverse, intersex, or open are also eligible to apply.

Funding goals

The Elise Richter program supports the professional development of outstandingly qualified women researchers interested in pursuing an academic career. After completion of the program, funding recipients should have reached a level of qualification allowing them to apply for a senior faculty-level position in Austria or abroad (venia docendi, habilitation, or the equivalent).

Funding period and funding amount

  • 12 to 48 months
  • Principal investigator’s salary (extent of employment: at least 50%; current senior postdoc rate)
  • Project-specific costs of up to €30,000 per year


  • The applicant must have the academic qualifications needed to lead the proposed research project
  • Completed doctoral degree and at least two years of relevant postdoctoral experience in Austria or abroad
  • Preliminary work for the planned research project/thesis project
  • For further details, please see the application guidelines.


  • Decision by the Scientific Board on the basis of an international review process, generally at the Board’s March, June or November/December meeting
  • Co-financing option with the Matching Funds initiative

Application information

Rolling submissions using the online application portal elane

Funding institution

Austrian Science Fund (FWF) and, if applicable, other funding agencies

Further information

The principal investigators of all Elise Richter projects approved in the previous year are introduced and honored at an annual networking event.

New Funding Program: ASTRA Awards replaced Elise Richter

In July 2024, the FWF launched a new career funding program: the FWF ASTRA Awards. This funding will help advanced postdocs in Austria make the leap to the top of their research field. For more information, please see the FWF ASTRA Awards program page.


Currently no submissions

Please note:

Applications can be submitted until July 16, 2024 (2:00 pm local time Vienna). The application must also be approved for submission by the research institution by this deadline.

Inquiries and contact

Staff members of the specialist department Strategy - Career development

Application portal

Program-specific FAQ

Can I apply for a START project at the same time? 

Yes, applicants can submit a parallel application for START. This is the only situation where it is also possible to submit substantively identical proposals, as long as they comply with the respective application guidelines.

I have already held a Hertha Firnberg position; can I apply for an Elise Richter position afterwards? 

Yes, but only for a maximum of three years (= six years of total funding from both the Firnberg and Richter programs).

Does the chosen research institution have to be at a university or does the research institution have to be in Austria? 

Elise Richter positions can also be applied for at non-academic research institutions in Austria.

Can I take a leave of absence from a (contractual) university assistant position to apply for an Elise Richter position, or can I apply for an Elise Richter position in addition to working in a 50% part-time position? 

In principle, both options are possible; if you apply for a part-time employment contract, the funding for your own personnel costs will be reduced to reflect the extent of employment.

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