Ensuring an inclusive funding process that creates a level playing field for people with different backgrounds is very important to the Austrian Science Fund (FWF). The FWF’s funding programs are designed to provide the best possible support for researchers whose careers do not follow traditional paths.

In line with the FWF’s FWF Strategy for Gender Equality and Diversity of Researchers, breaks or delays in applicants’ research careers that have led to publication gaps, unorthodox career paths, or limited international research experience (e.g. due to pregnancy, childcare, caregiving obligations, military or civilian service, flight, and asylum) can be taken into account, as can exceptions to and interruptions of typical career paths due to disability and/or long-term illness. 

The general application requirements for each funding program apply to all proposals submitted. To create equal opportunities for everyone in the competitive field of research funding, career breaks or interruptions due to disabilities, chronic illnesses, or other reasons can be detailed when submitting a proposal. Researchers are given the option to explain justified career breaks in their academic CV, making these explanations available to international reviewers. This allows reviewers to evaluate the applicant’s publication record fairly and within the overall context of their previous research career. In cases of doubt, the appropriate decision-making bodies of the FWF shall decide whether an applicant’s research qualifications are adequate. For further details on accounting for career breaks, please refer to the information sheet on career interruptions (PDF). 

The FWF also offers special consulting services for the disabled, chronically ill, and people with challenging life circumstances on applying for funding. Please don’t hesitate to contact the FWF if you have any questions regarding the application process due to your individual situation.

Data protection notice

When assessing eligibility, all personal data provided to the FWF by an applicant on a voluntary basis that relates to the information provided above shall be taken into consideration exclusively to the applicant’s benefit (compensation of disadvantages). Relevant information (without sensitive or personal data) can be included in an individual’s academic CV, making it available to the reviewers. A general explanation, including the duration of the interruption or delay, is sufficient. Please complete the required form (docx) and give your explicit consent to data processing on the last page. If you wish to submit further supporting documents in addition to those listed in the form, please submit them directly to the FWF office. These will not be visible to your research institution. This information is only used to check the application requirements and is not made available to reviewers.

Equal Opportunities in Research Funding unit

Dr. Sabine Haubenwallner
+43 676 83487 8603

Marlene Hock MSc
+43 676 83487 8610

Gleichstellung und Diversität im FWF

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