TWAS-DFG Cooperation Visits Programme - MENA

Postdoctoral researchers from the MENA region can go on a ‘Cooperation Visit’ lasting three months to an institute in Germany.
The call is closed
Partner Organizations
Host countries
Eligible applicants
Eligible nationality
Minimum degree held
3 months
All academic fields
Age limit


The TWAS-DFG Cooperation Visits Programme provides postdoctoral researchers from the MENA region with the opportunity to make a three-month ‘Cooperation Visit’ to a research institute in Germany. Such visits must be undertaken within 12 months of the award.

The aim of the visit is to initiate research collaboration between the scientists from the MENA region and the German scientists with the ultimate goal of developing longer-term links, perhaps through other Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, or German Research Foundation) programmes. DFG will cover travel expenses and provide subsistence costs for the stay in Germany. The administration and financial operation of TWAS is undertaken by UNESCO in accordance with an agreement signed by the two organizations.

Deadline: 5 June 2024 Extended deadline: 12 June 2024


  • Applicants need to hold a PhD obtained not earlier than 2019; however, for female applicants the year limit for the PhD can be extended by two years per child, i.e. for a woman with one child the PhD year would be 2017 or later. This exception for female applicants has a limit of three children which equals a maximum of six years. Therefore, the PhD of a female applicant with three or more children should not have been obtained before 2013.
  • Applicants must be nationals of a MENA country and hold a research position in a MENA country.
  • Applicants already on site in Germany are not eligible.
  • Applicants with an established collaboration with the intended host are not eligible. Examples of established collaboration include one common publication with the host Professor; a previous visit to the host laboratory; interactions between applicant and supervisor as a result of meeting at a conference; the host Professor was previously the applicant's MSc or PhD supervisor.
  • Previous recipients of a TWAS-DFG Cooperation Visit cannot reapply. For a second visit, the German host can apply for funding under the DFG Initiation of International Collaboration Programme.
  • Women scientists are especially encouraged to apply.
  • All academic fields will be considered.

Finding a German host

Please click here for useful information on how to identify the best German host in your field.TWAS and DFG cannot provide any assistance in identifying a German host.

Information sheet for the host institution in Germany:


Informationsblatt für die gastgebende Einrichtung in Deutschland:


Submitting your application

Applicants must complete the online application form by clicking on the 'Apply now' button at the bottom of this page. While filling in the online application, applicants also need to upload the following documentation:

  • scanned copy of your passport, even if expired (page with your name and surname);
  • a recent invitation letter from a German host:
  1. - maximum two pages on the host institution’s letterhead paper,
  2. - it should contain the proposed time of the visit (up to 3 months) and should refer to the proposed cooperation.
  3. - It should be made evident that the applicant and the proposed host have mutually agreed on the research proposal that will be submitted; the results of the selection will be available in January 2025.
  4. - confirmation that the necessary research facilities are available;
  • two reference letters from senior scientists familiar with your work. The letters need to be on headed paper and signed;
  • copy of the PhD certificate;
  • evidence of proficiency in either English or German;
  • supporting statement from the Head/Director of the applicant's home institute: it must confirm that the Head/Director is favourable to the application and that the applicant will be granted leave to take up the cooperation visit in Germany if awarded.

Other information

  • TWAS-DFG Cooperation Visits do not include provisions for accompanying family members.
  • Applications for part-time visits will be considered ineligible.
  • Successful applicants must not take up other assignments during the period of their Cooperation Visits.
  • DFG shall be entitled to a repayment of all or part of any funds paid to an applicant hereunder, in the event that the applicant intentionally or negligently fails to fulfil any or all of the above conditions. The applicant agrees to pay any reasonable legal and/or collection costs incurred by DFG to obtain the repayment.

Please be advised that applicants may apply for only one programme per calendar year in the TWAS and OWSD portfolio. Applicants will not be eligible to visit another institution in that year under the TWAS Visiting Professor programmes. One exception: the head of an institution who invites an external scholar to share his/her expertise under the TWAS Visiting Professor programmes may still apply for another programme.

Please note that a detailed research proposal should be mutually agreed between the German host and the applicant before submitting it.

Contact email: