Make Our Planet Great Again – German Research Initiative (MOPGA-GRI): Franco-German Fellowship Programme on Climate, Energy and Earth System Research
It’s five minutes past midnight. The Paris Climate Agreement has made it clear that something urgently needs to change. In signing the agreement, nearly every country in the world has committed to introducing measures to protect the global climate. But climate change involves many complex relationships that still remain unexplored. A new programme has been launched, bringing together thirteen international researchers to investigate relevant issues from the fields of climate, energy and earth systems research.
The Franco-German Fellowship Programme MOPGA-GRI
- facilitates cutting-edge research at German universities and research institutions on topics relating to the Paris climate targets.
- makes a lasting contribution to building networks between scientists by means of regular German-French conferences and working meetings, thereby strengthening international research.
- supports policy makers in their climate-related decisions by publishing recommendations for action together with their application-oriented and innovative research results.
- provides international impetus to assume responsibility for global developments.
- strengthens German and French institutions of higher education and research centres and intensifies cooperation between the two countries in the field of science.
MAIN RESEARCH INTERESTS OF THE 13 FELLOWS
HISTORY OF THE INITIATIVE
Funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and implemented by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the programme has its origins in the „Make Our Planet Great Again" initiative launched by French president, Emmanuel Macron. Both countries want to use this programme to contribute to the achievement of the climate goals set out in the Paris Agreement, thus assuming responsibility for urgent climate issues. The BMBF has agreed to provide the initiative with a budget of €15 million (plus additional contributions from German institutions) in order to support suitable international research projects in close cooperation with the French initiative. In total, each of the research groups has a budget of up to €1 million (junior researchers) or €1.5 million (senior researchers). The projects will run for four years and are to be carried out from mid-2018 to the end of 2022. The initiative aims to encourage international scientists in the three core fields of climate, energy and earth systems research to carry out fundamental research projects at German universities and research institutions and to establish research groups.
The programme was first announced in mid-2017 and the results of the two-stage selection procedure were published in May 2018. The funding call was primarily aimed at early-career researchers, but was also open to applications from more senior scientists. Both foreign and German researchers were invited to apply, provided that they had been working at a foreign university or research institution for at least two years at the time of their application. In the end, 13 out of a total of 287 proposals were selected by an independent commission.