Scholarship in Europe

Branco Weiss Fellowship (postdocs worldwide – all disciplines)

Eligibility, Duration, and Funding

Courageous postdocs aiming to go further

You are eligible for the 2023 intake if:

  • You officially hold a PhD on January 15, 2023
  • You have obtained your PhD a maximum of five years prior to January 15, 2023
  • You do not hold/have not held a faculty-equivalent position (e.g. assistant professor or lecturer)
  • Your project departs from the mainstream of research in your discipline
  • You have a record of outstanding scientific achievement
  • You demonstrate in the proposal a willingness to engage in a dialog on relevant social, cultural, political or economic issues beyond the frontiers of your particular discipline

Please note that we typically do not fund mainstream research projects that could also be funded by other scientific organizations.

If you have applied before and were not selected, you are welcome to apply again.

The following reasons for delays after attaining your PhD are acceptable:

  • parental leave (max. one year per child)
  • inability to work due to illness or accident

Applicants must explain their reasons for applying for an extension and provide the relevant documents. The number of weeks that the research work was interrupted is accepted as an extension.


Research projects should be conceived to last five years.

The first two years of a project are called the pioneer phase. At the end of the pioneer phase, a review and a site visit will be conducted. At this point, the project, its continued originality, and the productivity of the fellow will be evaluated. If the results of the evaluation and site visit are satisfactory, the fellow enters the exploitation phase for the remaining three years of the fellowship.

Branco Weiss Fellows are encouraged to seek faculty positions during their exploitation phase. Assuming an academic position will not result in termination of the fellowship.


A Branco Weiss Fellowship comes to CHF 100,000 per year. It may be used to cover all legitimate costs of research (i.e. salary and/or equipment, travel expenses, consumables, personnel, etc.).


Applications for the 2023 fellowship intake are now open. Apply here.

Please have the following documents (pdf files) ready for uploading:

  • Letter of motivation including a statement explaining why your research differs from the mainstream (max. 1 page)
  • Your proposed research project (max. 4 pages, including abstract, timelines and tentative milestones, references extra)
  • Your CV (max. 4 pages)
  • An invitation letter by your prospective host, stating why you are invited to the host group and why your research project is supported
  • Copies of your three best publications (no doctoral theses, no books, only peer-reviewed journal articles or individual book chapters))

Please note that a letter of support does not have to be submitted upon application. Budgets do not have to be submitted.

The steps required to submit an application in the web-based ETH Zurich grant application system ‘eResearch’ are outlined here.

In preparing the description of your intended research, you may wish to give emphasis to the idea or concept forming the heart of the work, the methods you are planning to use, and the potential impact of the outcome both for your own subject and for other disciplines. In your proposal, you should also seek to present links between society and science that you wish to explore and promote.

All documents must be submitted as PDF files (max. 15 MB in total). Please use the following naming conventions for your documents, and do not forget to add your family name:

  • FamilyName_ResearchProposal
  • FamilyName _CV
  • FamilyName _MotivationLetter
  • FamilyName _HostLetter
  • FamilyName _Publication1
  • FamilyName _Publication2
  • FamilyName _Publication3

Before applying, please read the Frequently Asked Questions on this website carefully.

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