START Programme

Target group
Outstanding young researchers of any discipline with two or more years research experience as Postdoc.

Researchers should be given the long-term and extensive financial security to plan their research and either build up or consolidate their own research groups thereby qualifying themselves for a leading position in the academic system (especially as university professors within Austria or abroad). 


  • the doctoral degree must have been completed (award of certificate) no less than two years and no longer than eight years before the deadline for submission of applications (20th September 2021). Extensions to this period may be allowed in case of eligible career breaks (see guidelines).
  • excellent research proposal and exceptional international track record
  • scholarly/scientific independence must be proven, applicants should already have acquired competitive third-party funds independently since earning their doctorate 
  • in addition it is desirable that candidates have completed a research stay abroad of at least one year

6 years, an interim review after 3 years decides on continuation

Minimum €800.000 up to maximum €1.2 Mio. 


Via the FWF’s electronic application portal (elane)

  • Start: expected 1 July 2022
  • End: expected 20 September 2022; the possibility to submit via Elane ends at 14.00 pm CEST.
  • in English


  • decisions are taken by the FWF Board based on recommendations of the International START-/Wittgenstein-Jury; recommendations are based on an international review process and a hearing
  • expected to be 17-18 June 2022 
  • awarded by the Federal Minister for Science

about 6 grants


Electronic application portal