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BMBF’s Budget for 2008

VeKNI 2010.03.16 05:34 Views : 30637

BMBF’s Budget for 2008 

The budget for 2008 takes full advantage of the economic upsurge and the opportunities it provides for research and development. In addition to the resources earmarked for the Six Billion Euro Programs, a further 220 million Euros will be available for research and development (R&D). With the increase in funds set out in the budget, the Federal Government is making a major contribution towards its goal of spending 3% of GDP on R&D by 2010. The BMBF alone will raise its spending on research and development by 580 million Euros compared with 2007. 

This increase means that the BMBF can set new thematic priorities:

  • Over 336 million Euros are available for climate, ecological and energy research as part of the High-Tech Strategy for Climate Protection. This is an increase of 47.2 million Euros (or 16%) compared with 2007. The key areas of funding will be environmental technologies and the "Research on Climate Change" initiative, an energy research programs focusing on basic research.
  • In 2008, over 400 million Euros will be available for life sciences, with special emphasis on pharmaceutical research and medical technology - 46 million Euros (or 13%) more than in 2007.
  • According to the draft, 76 million Euros will be available in 2008 for new instruments for the transfer of knowledge and technology, including the Research Bonus, the top-class cluster competition, and the planned Research Bonus II for research institutions that serve the public good. This amount will increase to 120 million Euros by 2011.

Outside the BMBF's budget (Departmental Budget 30), funds are available for the all-day school programs (518 million Euros) and the BAföG grants provided by the KfW (Bank for Reconstruction and Development) (527 million Euros). 

The budget available to the BMBF for the basic funding of institutions will be around 3.6 billion Euros; this includes funds for the Joint Initiative for Research and Innovation. The amount earmarked for basic research in the natural sciences has been raised to 178.4 million Euros - 16.3% more than in 2007. This budget area includes the Federal Government's share of funding for the XFEL and FAIR projects. 

In addition, a new funding programs will be created to promote equal opportunities for female engineers and natural scientists, among other new programs. A total of 8.5 million Euros will be available for this purpose in 2008. An additional 11 million Euros will be made available for interdisciplinary measures in the field of international cooperation, especially in the research sector. 


According to the agreement reached by the heads of the Federal and countries governments on 20 August 2007, the Higher Education Pact 2020 includes a program for the admission of new university entrants and a program for funding one-off payments for research projects supported by the German Research Association (DFG). As agreed, 242 million Euros will be available for this purpose in 2008; the resources needed for the higher education pact are also taken into account in the financial planning period beyond 2008. Approximately 1,294 million Euros will be available up to 2010. 


Expenditure for BAföG will increase by about 167 million Euros in 2008, to 1.297 million Euros. This will enable a significant increase in the grant parameters - which have not been changed since 2001 - starting during the winter semester of the 2008/2009 academic year. 

The BMBF and its financing tasks 

The BMBF finances numerous institutions and projects in education and research, either alone or in conjunction with the Länder. 

According to the latest available statistics from the Federal Statistical office for 2005, the Federal Government and the Länder spent a total of approximately 17.2 billion Euros on research and development (R&D), whereas companies spent 38.2 billion Euros. The state thus financed a total of 31% of all R&D expenditure in Germany. In 2005, a total of 5.8 billion Euros of state research expenditure went to the institutional funding of research organizations which are jointly financed by the Federal Government and the Länder. The German Research Association, which predominantly finances research at universities, received additional funds. According to the Federal Statistical Office, in 2005: 

  • The German Research Association (DFG) received 1.4 billion Euros;
  • The centers of the Hermann von Helmholtz Association (HGF) received 2.5 billion Euros;
  • The Max Planck Society (MPG) received 1.2 billion Euros;
  • The Fraunhofer Society (FhG) received 1.3 billion Euros;
  • The Leibniz Association's institutions received 0.8 billion Euros, and
  • The Academies received 0.1 billion Euros

With 0.9 billion Euros, the public research institutions of the Federal Government, the Länder, and the local governments received a share of 11.1% of total expenditure on non-university research and development institutions. 

The BMBF alone finances more than two thirds of this sum, with the share of federal and Länder funding varying from institution to institution. Depending on the type of institution, the share of funding provided by the Länder is either divided up between the participating Länder alone or between all the Länder according to an established formula (the Königstein formula). (Source: Research and Innovation in Germany 2005)