The Villum Foundation


In recent years, the Foundation has chiefly supported research activities in science and technology. The Foundation does not support research areas in health science, medicine and biomedicine. Grants are made for pioneering research to cover salaries, running costs and the purchase of major equipment of particular importance for the research.

The Foundation makes large grants to research centres without walls – the VKR Centres of Excellence. The process of inviting proposals for VKR Centres of Excellence is performed in dialogue with science and technology research environments. The Foundation investigates potential themes for centre formations on its own initiative, while the research environments are also welcome to submit proposals to the Foundation.

The Foundation has established a visiting professor programme, which offers Danish research institutions a means of attracting foreign researchers for periods of 2-6 months’ duration. Grants made under the programme are awarded following the Foundation’s invitation to the research institutions.

Since 2001, the Foundation has funded a postdoctoral programme in science and technology. This programme comprises individual scholarships, which are awarded to junior Danish researchers after PhD level, and so-called block scholarships, which are awarded to research managers at Danish universities for recruitment of postdoctoral scholars in Denmark and from abroad. The programme is administrated by a committee of deans from faculties of science and technology.

The Foundation also supports the dissemination of scientific and technical research. Among the projects supported, the focus is on projects to promote an interest among young people in science and technology.

The Foundation makes donations for large-scale social programmes and cultural projects. These donations are made both in Denmark and abroard. Accordingly, from 2007, the Foundation has focused especially on increasing its donations to social projects in Eastern and Central Europe (in Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, Rumania, Czech Republic and Slovakia ) and projects in Greenland. In these countries, the Foundation gives priority to innovative projects aimed at improving conditions of life and prospects in adulthood for socially at-risk children and adolescents. The Foundation’s donations are made on the basis of local experiences, priorities and traditions.

The VILLUM FOUNDATION's Young Investigator Programme
Support for the talents ahead.
The aim of the Young Investigator Programme is to support especially talented, young Danish researchers in science and technology with ambitions of establishing their own, independent research profiles. The programme is aimed at both young researchers at postdoctoral level who are not currently in permanent employment, but who have the potential for gaining tenure, and young, relatively newly and permanently appointed associate professors.

Research projects - science and technology
The Foundation supports research activities, especially within science and technology. For this programme, the Foundation awards grants only for major research projects with a budget on more than 0.5 mio. DKK. A typical project budget is 2-6 mio. DKK. over 3 years. The grants are made to cover salaries for Ph.D., postdocs, technical assistance (not permanently employed staff), operating expenses and procurement of major equipment for research purposes, especially in the case of pioneering research. To a limited extent, and based on a transparent budget, the Foundation will be ready to cover overhead costs directly related to the project concerned. Applicants must have a permanent position at a university or research institution. Financial support to research projects does not include research areas in health science, medicine and biomedicine.

Grants for Environement and Sustainability - effect and positive change
Environment and sustainability are new support areas for both foundations.
The vision and mission is to support healthy and balanced societies, based on sustainability and a fair exploitation of the limited resources on Earth. We want to make an impact and create positive change. We assume that prevention is better than cure. However, from time to time, cure can be necessary.
The foundations support environmental projects based in Denmark. Partly to strengthen the Danish position as a pioneering country within the field of sustainable development. Partly based on a long tradition to collaborate and involve different parties in society, providing a solid platform for dealing with the complex challenges and to create better societal models. Projects with European or international
focus are supported by the VILLUM FOUNDATION.

The grants are focused on three related main topics:
Sustainable societies – to bring about debate and awareness – and on the long perspective; sustainable changes.
Utilisation and management of resources - to bring about change, less consumption of resources and reduction of the environmental consequences in the producing countries.
Biodiversity – to protect nature and avoid loss of biodiversity.

You can read more about how to apply to the foundation here.

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