Funded research as a result of internal competition was among the elements of the Institutional Strategy. The funds are granted primarily for research projects that open up new research fields and broaden the competence portfolio of the KIT. For this reason, the following instruments had been established:
New Field Groups (NFGs)
NFGs were instrumental in shaping the research profile of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and opening up novel fields of research. Only those proposals for NFGs were recommended for implementation that promised to enhance the profile of KIT. A NFG usually comprised a W3-professorship, several positions for scientific and technical personnel as well as consumables and small equipment.
Research Groups (RGs) and Shared Research Groups (SRGs)
RGs and SRGs offered young scientists independence in their research and first experiences in leadership. These instruments also served as a means of giving additional weight to the competence in research of KIT and to open up new fields of research. A RG or SRG comprised the group leader, additional positions for scientific and technical personnel as well as consumables and small equipment. Shared Research Groups had the additional advantage of close, institutionalized connections to an industry partner or a non-university research institution. The respective partner agreed to cover at least 50% of the costs of the SRG.
Shared Professorships (SPs)
SPs served the career advancement of young scientists, especially in the field of engineering. They offered the possibility to closely collaborate with industry and allow for transfer of knowledge from the field of science to industry. Through parallel or sequential activity at KIT and an industrial partner, scientists had the opportunity to reach a well-grounded decision on their future career paths. A SPs comprised the professorship as well as consumables and small equipment; the industry partner took over at least 50% of the costs.
Young Investigator Groups (YIGs)
YIGs served the career advancement of young scientists, fostered their early independence in doing research and enhanced the profile of KIT. A YIG was provided with a yearly budget for personnel and consumables. Necessary qualifications for the YIG-leader were exceptional accomplishments as a student and an outstanding doctoral dissertation.
Feasibility Studies (FYS)
FYS had the aim of allowing young scientists to work independently on promising topics that they came up with in the wake of their Master, Diploma, or doctoral thesis. Thus, they had the opportunity to apply their findings to other research areas not covered in their thesis or to develop technical apparatuses. FYS received funding for one year.
Network of Excellent Retired Scientists (NES)
Many retired scientists of KIT or scientists with close affiliation to this institution would like to remain active in research and to pass on their experiences and knowledge to young scientists. The network had been founded in order to assist them in this task in various ways.