The Terra Viva Grants Directory develops and manages information about grants for agriculture, energy, environment, and natural resources in the world's developing countries.

Volkswagen Foundation

VolkswagenFnd2Grants for research and international professional collaboration between Germany and partners in Sub-Saharan Africa and Central Asia

Principal Office: Germany



The Volkswagen Foundation is among the major foundations in Germany. Its mission is to establish forward-looking fields of knowledge.

Grant Programs for Agriculture, Energy, Environment, Natural Resources

The Foundation supports collaborative partnerships between German and international researchers in program areas defined by the Foundation. The program areas of main relevance in the Terra Viva Grants Directory are identified below.

1 — Cooperative Research Projects in Sub-Saharan Africa (“Knowledge for Tomorrow”). This program funds cooperative projects developed and carried out by both junior and senior African scholars and scientists in cooperation with German partners. The Foundation emphasizes academic networks inside Africa beyond existing language barriers.

Some calls for proposals define specific thematic priorities. Past funding rounds have included environmental conservation, agriculture, water resources, and climate change (among others). Other calls for proposals are open to all disciplines.

Additionally, the Foundation funds workshops, symposia, and summer schools in Africa.

About the program

APPLICATION: Open calls for proposals are published on the web pages of “Knowledge for Tomorrow”. Each call defines the aims, criteria, and process to apply for funding.

Additionally, funds can be requested for workshops, symposia, summer schools, and initiatives to communicate science to the public. Applicants send their draft proposals to the appropriate individual on the Foundation’s staff, who will invite full proposals if warranted.

About how to apply


2 — Research and Higher Education in Central Asia and the Caucasus (“Between Europe and the Orient”). This program supports collaborative research in defined themes relevant for Central Asia and the Caucasus. Additionally, the Foundation funds capacity building, academic infrastructure, workshops and other events, and integration of scientists in the region.

Thematic areas have included environment, energy, and natural resources (among others). Funding is directed to academic institutions.

About the program

APPLICATION: From time to time, the program convenes workshops of researchers from Germany, Central Asia, and the Caucasus to plan thematic calls for proposals.

In addition to the thematic calls, the Foundation accepts applications for capacity building of young researchers; re-integration of returning researchers; improvement of academic infrastructure in the region; and workshops, symposia, and summer schools.

About how to apply


Geographical Distribution of Grant Activities in Developing Countries

Eurasia and Central Asia

Sub-Saharan Africa

Note: In its program for Central Asia and the Caucasus, Volkswagen focuses on the countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus that became independent after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, as well as Afghanistan and sub-regions of Russia and China. Bordering countries (e.g., Turkey and Iran) may also be eligible under certain circumstances. Grant seekers should consult the Foundation’s website for details.



The Foundation’s website is available in German and English.

In its more than 50 years of existence, the Volkswagen Foundation has funded approximately 30 thousand projects for a total expenditure of over €4 billion.

Grant seekers should consult the Foundation’s general information on applying for support.

The Foundation posts current funding opportunities in all fields.

Last Profile Review

September 2021