Our topics

With its funding, the Carl Zeiss Foundation addresses current scientific, economic and social challenges within the application spectrum of the so-called STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).

By providing funding, the Foundation aims to give researchers the space they need to develop scientific solutions to overcome these challenges. Basic research and applied research as well as the practical application of research results are equally important in this regard. Particular emphasis is placed on funding multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research approaches.

Main topics

The funding strategy of the Carl Zeiss Foundation, which was adopted in 2021, provides funding which is open in terms of topic as well as targeted funding formats for certain topics. The focus on specific topics enables challenges which the Foundation believes are of particular relevance to be mastered in a sustainable manner. These topics are developed together with experts from the fields of science and business and represent the contemporary design of the Foundation’s mission. They provide a range of links for the profiles and specialisms of universities and research institutions in Baden-Württemberg, Rhineland-Palatinate and Thuringia. All the main topics stay on the agenda for a period of at least five years.
The first main topic to which the Carl Zeiss Foundation is dedicating its efforts for several years from 2021 is
Artificial intelligence.
Artifical Intelligence

Artifical Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a key future technology of the 21st century. It refers to efforts to develop digital systems which can solve complex problems independently. It is the driving force behind many scientific disciplines, is of great importance for companies and has wide-reaching effects on society.
Further topics will be developed and published over the coming months and years.

Annual topics

Between 2018 and 2020, the major funding programmes run by the Carl Zeiss Foundation had a different topic each year. In 2021, the topics of the year were replaced by main topics with a longer-term focus.