Research Scholarships: "Islam, the Modern Nation State and Transnational Movements"

Applications for research scholarships can be made directly by Postdocs or scholars with Post Doctoral Lecture Qualification. A research scholarship is usually applied for by one scholar who will work on a specific project on his own. PhD scholarships are only granted in connection with a research project. The simultaneous receipt of salary or retirement pension and a research scholarship is not possible. The period of support for Foundation stipend holders working on Ph.D. or research projects can be extended by up to 12 months if the holder becomes a parent during the period covered by the stipend and has an entitlement to maternity or parental leave. Individual arrangements must be discussed with the Foundation’s administrative office.

The funding period is generally between one and 24 months.

It is possible to apply for:

  • basic scholarship sum

if appropriate 

  • supplement for travel abroad (monthly endowment for stays of for weeks or more)
  • family grant award (for children who have not yet turned 18 under presentation of the child’s birth certificate)

and if required

  • travel expenses 
  • material expenses

Islam, the Modern Nation State and Transnational Movements

The special programme "Islam, the Modern Nation State and Transnational Movements" is aimed at researchers who, with an eye to current developments, are examining the emergence of political movements in the Islamic world at the national and/or transnational level. Historical studies are encouraged and supported, together with projects in the areas of religious, cultural or political science: What emancipatory, what modern elements does political Islam promise and integrate? What developments, what connections, what similarities in the key categories, interpretations and claims are to be drawn between pan-Arabism and pan-Islamism at the close of the 19th century and the movements of today? What historical self-descriptions are recognizable in the concepts? Via what specific ideas of communalisation can social radicalisation and mobilisation for violence be legitimised?

The special programme takes a look at the dynamics between Islamic teachings, Islamism, nationalism and transnational orientations and environments. Scientific discussion of the countries and regions of the Islamic world should bring together expertise possessing regional and thematic focus in order to allow the problems associated with areas of conflict to be expounded upon, particularly with regard to global influences and processes of cultural exchange.

Proposals will be supported that address the particularities and contexts of cultural and historical environments and relationships. The projects' deliverables should be able to make a contribution to diverse and expert discussions in public and political circles.

Applications are invited for funding research scholarships and research projects. PhD scholarships are only granted in connection with a research project.

The individual research areas

  • Historical and present day Islamic systems of society and state
  • The concept of nation, national movements and nationalism in Islamic civilisation
  • Islamic fundamentalism or Islamic emancipation?
  • Transnational civil society movements in the Islamic world
  • Islamic states in the international world system


The next application deadline is 16 May 2018.

Application documents

From now on, it is only possible to apply electronically for the Special Programme Islam. The necessary application documents can be uploaded in the electronic application form.

The following documents must be included in an application for a research scholarship (in German or English):

  • description of the research proposal (max. 8 pages)
    • plus bibliography if necessary (in addition to the max. 8 pages)
    • at least font size 11 and line spacing 1.5
  • time schedule and working plan with information about the necessary travel to archives, libraries and museums or other destinations
  • detailed cost calculation
    • description of the journeys to archives, museums or other destinations which are closely related to the subject of the project and detailed calculation of the costs (travel and lodging). No flat-rate daily allowance or flat-rates for hotel expenses shall be paid
    • calculation of material costs (e.g. for photocopies or film versions of archive material, photographs, etc., not a lump sum for books)
    • the Foundation can’t cover any college or tuition fees.
  • tabular curriculum vitae with list of publications
  • academic certificates (Masters, PhD, professorship, etc.; please do not send Bachelor certificates)
  • one letter of recommendation. References have to be signed personally by the author and sent to the Gerda Henkel Foundation. A signed version by email or fax is accepted. It is possible to submit more than one letter of recommendation.
Application date
1-24 months
Humanities : Anthropology & Ethnology, Archaeology, Arts and Art history, Digital humanities and big data, History, Linguistics, Literature, Philosophy, Theology and religion
Social sciences : Information and Communication Sciences, Demography, Economy, Gender studies, Identities, gender and sexuality, Geography, International Relations, Law, Pedagogic & Education Research, Political science, Sociology