With the #ConnectingMinds program, the Austrian Science Fund FWF encourages researchers to involve non-academic stakeholders in their research projects. Funding is available to teams that combine both academic and social knowledge and are applying them to help tackle social, technological, ecological, and economic challenges. The focus is on transdisciplinarity, innovative research approaches, and support for community engagement and collective learning spaces.

Target group

The program is aimed at consortia of 2 to 5 internationally outstanding researchers at one or more Austrian research institutions.

Funding goals

The goal of the program is to give researchers the opportunity to initiate cooperative research projects that combine academic and social knowledge (transdisciplinary research). Funding is available for projects focusing on highly relevant current and future social topics, which will generate new research findings while also possibly identifying solutions to complex challenges. As a result, knowledge from different groups of people in society is interlinked with research activities, strengthening the dialog between science and society. Funding researchers’ capacity-building in transdisciplinary research is intended to support the application of a methodologically sound transdisciplinary research process.

Additional program-specific information

The program is divided into two phases:

In the first phase, 2 to 5 researchers can apply to conduct a #ConnectingMinds workshop. If their proposal is approved, the researchers can use this workshop to work together with the other project participants (including non-academic participants) to develop and advance their project idea and their planned research process for a #ConnectingMinds project.

The second phase is to submit the proposal for a #ConnectingMinds project based on the results of the workshop and to further elaborate the research project.

Information on the current call for proposals

For the current call, the FWF is supporting innovative #ConnectingMinds workshops and #ConnectingMinds projects with funding provided by the Fonds Zukunft Österreich as part of the thematic groups EU Missions, Sustainable Food Systems, and Building(s) Tomorrow. Research questions for this call must focus on the following topics:

For more information and examples of possible subject areas, please see the application guidelines. Proposals on topics other than those listed above will not be accepted for this call.

The thematic group Sustainable Food Systems is a joint initiative with aws. More detailed information on the "aws Sustainable Food Systems Initiative" can be found here. To be notified of future programs in the aws Food Systems Initiative, please sign up here.

Funding period and funding amount

  • #ConnectingMinds workshop: 1–3 days
  • #ConnectingMinds workshop: maximum €12,000
  • #ConnectingMinds project: maximum 60 months
  • #ConnectingMinds project: maximum €1.25 million


  • Consortium of 2 to 5 researchers or arts-based researchers with research qualifications that meet FWF standards
  • High scientific quality by international standards
  • Innovative research approach that addresses a social issue as well as one or more specific challenges and develops possible solutions
  • Application of a transdisciplinary research process with the possibility of involving non-academic participants
  • Proposals must demonstrate a thematic relevance to one or more of the thematic groups named above
  • For further details, please see the application guidelines.


  • #ConnectingMinds workshops: written peer review by an international jury
  • #Connecting Minds projects: by the Scientific Board based on the recommendation of the international jury; recommendations are made based on international peer review as well as hearings

Funding institution

Austrian Science Fund (FWF)


Currently no submissions

Inquiries and contact

Mag. phil. Petra Biberhofer PhD
+43 676 83487 8839

Application portal

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