Berliner Startup Stipendium

Our startup support units help teams come together and startup their idea. They advise about funding and networking opportunities and assist you in applying for the Berliner Startup Stipendium scholarship.

The funding program:

  • What: Technology-based ideas that have not yet been founded
  • Who: Teams consisting of 2-4 members
  • How much: 2,000 euros per person per month
  • How long: For a period of six months with the option to renew for a further six months

What the Science & Startups network offers you on top of that:

  • Supervision at one of the startup support units at FU, HU, TU, or Charité
  • Intensive coaching and training based on your needs
  • Workshops, events and networking platforms at all four institutions
  • Mentoring provided by leaders in science and business
  • Contact to potential clients and investors
  • On-campus coworking spaces and work stations

Which requirements do you need to fulfill to apply?

The idea for your startup / the product / the service must be:
• Tech-based
• Clearly innovative or represent an improvement on competitor projects / the status quo (for example, in terms of customer benefits or sustainable unique features)

The road to getting you started
• Participate in an initial advisory session at one of the startup centers at FU, HU, TU or Charité
• Provide a proof of principle - such as a lab prototype with sufficient data, a mock-up, etc.
• Demonstrate that their idea is at a stage where it can be further developed into a finished prototype within the funding period
• Provide proof of first considerations regarding a potential market, potential competitors and customer benefits
• Agree on milestones and objectives: Participating teams are required to achieve designated milestones, such as a considerable development of expertise, complete a prototype, and to develop their project to a point where it is possible to launch the startup or apply for additional funding.

Who and what is the funding for?

• Graduates with specialist technical knowledge and who are resident in Berlin
• Teams have to consist of two to four members
• Startup team members must demonstrate commitment to the realization of their idea (at least 24 hours per week) and be present at the work station assigned to them
• Teams may not have already submitted their idea to another university
• Parallel funding from other programs, whether currently or in the past, is not possible (EXIST business startup grants or in combination with startup grants provided by employment agencies)
• The project may not already be functioning as a business and may not be commercially active


• The startup project must be supervised by a science mentor from FU, HU, TU or Charité to ensure that the project receives the necessary specialist support as well as access to the required technical infrastructure throughout the period of funding.
• Mentors need to have completed a doctorate (minimum requirement) and be employed at the respective university throughout the funding period of the project.

Multi-step application procedure

Please note that while the application process is essentially identical at all universities, the timing may vary slightly.
The deadline for applications is January 31 2020. The funding period commences April 1, 2021.

  1. Initial advising session
    Once the basic funding conditions are fulfilled, an initial discussion or orientation discussion will then be held at the university where the application is to be submitted. Please arrange an appointment with the specified contact person before the 9 August deadline.
  2. Written application
    You will be provided with the application papers once you have successfully completed the initial discussion. Once preselection has been completed, you will either be invited to present your project to our jury or receive a letter informing you that your application has not been successful.
  3. Jury pitch
    You and your team will then pitch your project to our jury. The jury consists of representatives of the universities as well as experts from the Berlin and national startup scenes. The jury decides on the suitability of your project for funding.
  4. Funding of successful teams
    Funding will initially be for a period of six months.
  5. Interim presentation (optional)
    Before the first six-month funding period expires, teams will be invited to make an interim presentation. An internal jury will decide whether to extend the funding period for a further six months on the basis of the progress made and additional funding requirements.