Crossing Borders Research Grants

Through our program „Crossing Borders“ we support international research trips for authors, filmmakers and photographers from German-speaking countries as well as China (including Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao), India, Indonesia, Japan and Vietnam. Depending on the country of destination, applicants can request research grants up to 15,000 Euro. Applications are accepted between March 1st and April 30th as well as between September 1st and October 31st via the online application portal of the Robert Bosch Stiftung. Decisions over the grant requests will be communicated to applicants in mid-July or late January, respectively.

Who receives funding?
Authors, filmmakers and photographers working on literary and essay prose works, poetry, photo-text volumes, children’s and young adults’ literature, scripts for documentary and feature films, radio programs and multimedia productions.

Is there an age limit for applicants?
There is no age limit for applicants.

Can several people apply for a grant for a project together?
In principle, this is possible. However, one project leader (m/f) should be named who will be the contact person for the Robert Bosch Foundation and Literarisches Colloquium Berlin and responsible for the project. In such cases, too, only one application form needs to be completed. Please indicate all persons having provided an idea among the participants in the project; résumés and details of the other participants should be attached along with the application. Only one person may apply for the research grant.

How often is it possible to apply?
Following a rejection, it is always possible to attempt an application again.

Are multiple applications possible?
Applicants, who have already received a Crossing Borders grant are welcome to apply again once the research for the first project has been completed, i.e. once the research report and the billing for the used grant has been completed; first time applicants would, however, be preferred.

The funding is available for research projects leading to publications within the following categories: literary and essayistic prose, poetry, photo-text volumes, literature for children and young adults, scripts for documentary and feature films, radio programmes, as well as digital publications (for example, e-books – provided they are to be published by an e-book publisher –, contributions published on websites with editorial supervision and with relevant reach, apps for mobile end devices). A multimedia combination of digital and non-digital formats is also possible.
Funding is not available for exhibitions and theatre productions.
Can I finance my entire project with Crossing Borders funding?
The Crossing Borders funding is set up as a grant. Depending on the destination country, it is possible to apply for a maximum of €10,000, which must be used exclusively for research purposes. Production and distribution costs must be covered by the applicant’s own means, or applications must be made to other funding bodies to cover these costs.

What type of publication is a prerequisite for the application?
The grant is subject to a proposal for publication and distribution in the form of either a book, a film, a radio program or a multimedia production. The publication should reach the broadest possible audience.

How long should the proposal be?
The proposal should be as long as necessary and as short as possible. A length of three to ten pages is generally sufficient.

What should the proposal contain?
The proposal should give information about the content, style and target group of the project in a concise form. It should explain why the project is suitable for a grant from the Crossing Borders program.

How is the Crossing Borders research funding calculated?
It is possible to apply for:

  1. A grant for the travel costs for the trip to Germany, the onward journey within Germany and the return trip, up to a maximum of € 2500.
  2. A grant for accommodation and extra expenditures on food for a maximum of 31 days (up to € 8000), which will be calculated as a lump sum daily allowance.
  3. A research grant for the preparation, execution and post-processing of the research trip up to a maximum of € 1500 per month, for a total of 3 months.

Should I provide details of my own resources or third-party funds?

Details about third-party funds and proof of the applicant’s own resources will have a positive effect on the evaluation of the application. In terms of applicants’ own resources, they should state the costs of practical requirements which would be incurred but which could be covered by their own financial means, e.g. technical equipment, rooms, office resources.

Third-party funds come from further institutions besides the applicant and the Robert Bosch Foundation. The acquisition of further monetary support is welcome. If the proportion of funding by third-party institutions or the applicant’s own resources is not confirmed at the time of application, efforts to secure such funding should be mentioned in the application.

Members of the Jury

Deputy Director of the Literarisches Colloquium and Managing Director of the “Deutscher Übersetzerfonds” (German Translators’ Fund)

Consultant and director of the Frankfurt Book Fair’s Book Information Centre (BIZ) in Beijing

Managing editor of the BR regional studios

Screenwriter and film director

Managing editor of the literature department at SWR2

Political and islam scientist, journalist and author of non-fiction books

Curator of the Helmut Newton Foundation

Lecturer at the Department for Southeast Asian Studies at Humboldt University of Berlin


Head of Department Program Coordination and Multimedia of ARTE TV Deutschland television network

Head of radio plays at Südwestrundfunk (SWR2)

Art historian, author and coordinator of intercultural projects