10. January 2020

Press release: DNRF Chair – A new instrument to strengthen universities’ ability to recruit

The DNRF Chair is a new instrument aimed at strengthening Danish research environments by recruiting top international researchers from abroad. The Danish National Research Foundation has just launched the DNRF Chair grant, which Danish universities can apply for three times a year.

The Danish National Research Foundation (DNRF) has just launched a new instrument called the DNRF Chair, with the overall purpose of enriching and strengthening Danish research environments.

The instrument aims to help Danish universities to attract and recruit outstanding researchers from abroad, including Danes wishing to return from an international position. A DNRF Chair grant can be used to support and strengthen the start-up of research activities in connection with the recruitment.

“Grants for start-up of research activities are used extensively to make positions attractive abroad. Hence, in order to be competitive, Danish universities have a need to also be able to offer flexible funding for the start-up of research activities when they want to recruit top researchers from abroad. Therefore, we are pleased that with the DNRF Chair grant, the foundation can strengthen the Danish universities’ ability to attract the most talented researchers,” said Jens Kehlet Nørskov, chair of the board of the Danish National Research Foundation.

All Danish universities may apply for a DNRF Chair grant to support the start-up activities of faculty who are in the process of being recruited from abroad as tenured professors at their respective institutions, and the foundation welcomes applications within and/or across all research areas. Each call consists of three application rounds distributed over the year, and normally one or two grants will be awarded per each of the three annual rounds. In 2020, only one application will be accepted per university for each of the three annual rounds.

As of now, the foundation plans to run the DNRF Chair instrument until December 2024, and the foundation has allocated a total of DKK 200 million, equaling an average of DKK 40 million per year. The average grant will be about DKK 5-10 million. Only in very exceptional cases, the grant may amount up to DKK 20 million.

With the establishment of the DNRF Chair instrument, a re-prioritization of the foundation’s allocations will take place, which means that, in the future, it will no longer be possible to apply for Niels Bohr Professorships. The professorships were launched in 2013, and the current Niels Bohr Professorships will run until 2021/2022.

More information about the DNRF chair can be found here

The current call and application form can be found here

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