Academy Kursus
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DZIF Academy

Educating and training the next generation of researchers in infectious diseases is the aim of the DZIF Academy. Highly attractive educational programs for students and postgraduates are fundamental for excellent basic, translational and clinican scientists.

Using a multidisciplinary training approach, the Academy programs are designed to promote career opportunities for young scientists in the fields of clinical infectious diseases, microbiology, virology, immunology and molecular medicine. It also supports female scientists and young parents during critical phases of their career.

„All DZIF Academy stipendiaries who have received funding so far have gained a permanent foothold in infection research.“
Jan Rupp
Jan Rupp
Coordinator DZIF Academy, Lübeck

At the same time, Academy programs allow trained clinicians to sharpen their scientific profile in parallel to specializing in infectious diseases and to qualify for an academic career. For this, the DZIF Academy closely collaborates with the German Societies for Infectious Diseases (DGI) and Pediatric Infectious Diseases (DGPI) and will award the DZIF certificates “Excellence in Infectious Diseases” and “PhD in Infection Research”.

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Clinical Leave Stipends

The overall goal of the DZIF Academy is to close the gap of multidisciplinary training approaches within infection research in order to master the biological complexities associated with infectious diseases. The DZIF Academy will fund up one-year clinical leave stipends for physicians in their clinical training. Stipend recipients from last year’s allocation period may also apply for a one-time six-month extension. Also, stipend recipients from former years who have not received an extension may apply for a six-month “follow-up” stipend in order to gain part-time or full-time release from duties to publish project results and/or apply for additional grants (e.g. DFG).

Call for Clinical Leave Stipends

MD/PhD Stipends

Reflecting its dedication to training next-generation Clinician Scientists, the DZIF Academy will allocate each year one full-time MD/PhD stipend for three years (in exceptional cases as part time with a longer duration) in order to enable MDs the opportunity to obtain an additional doctoral degree at one of the DZIF partner sites.

Call for MD/PhD Stipends

Maternity Leave Stipends

To encourage and facilitate the reintegration of women scientists after maternity leave or extended parental leave (Elternzeit), the DZIF Academy offers maternity leave stipends that allow part-time or full-time reintegration of DZIF PIs or employees in DZIF-funded projects.

Call for Maternity Leave Stipends

Stipends for medical students

The DZIF Academy supports the overall DZIF objective of attracting young students into infection research by granting up to six MD stipends to all DZIF focus sites per year. The purpose of the DZIF MD Stipend is to support medical students interested in performing an experimental study and joining a structured doctoral program to obtain their MD. Because of the individuality of their programs, all DZIF sites have established their own structured doctoral programs that enable medical students to complete a doctoral thesis in infection research.

The DZIF MD Stipend grants recipients twelve to eighteen months of release from the routine medical curriculum in order to achieve full-time dedication to thesis-related research. Interested candidates should please contact their local DZIF site manager or the DZIF Academy in order to receive more information.

Stipends for Advanced Clinician Scientists

This program will grant 50 % protected research time to a limited number of excellent physicians, who already are in a responsible clinical position (MDs after borard certification). During a two-year time span, stipends can be partly released from clinical duties, while they continue to increase their clinical qualification and competence. The program shall prepare candidates to apply for a leadership position or professorship in the area of infectious diseases.

Call for Advanced Clinician Scientists

Laboratory Rotations

High quality research in infectious diseases requires the combination of classical (protein chemistry, molecular genetics and medical microbiology) and advanced state-of-the-art technologies (imaging methods, proteomics, structural biology, next generation sequencing, RNAi based high throughput approaches, systems biology, bioinformatics etc.). The DZIF Academy will fund laboratory rotations in order to foster a deeper understanding of these methods and help master targeted applications. 

Call for Laboratory Rotations


The DZIF annually awards two prizes of 5.000 Euro for exceptional translational infection research: the DZIF Prize for Fundamental Translational Infection Research and the DZIF Prize for Clinical Translational Infection Research. Candidates who significantly contributed to infection research in Germany can either be nominated by their mentors or apply directly to the DZIF Academy. Besides the DZIF awards Dissertation Prizes, together with German Societies in the field of infection research; worth up to 1,500 euros: with the German Society of Infectious Diseases (DGI), the "Deutsche Gesellschaft für Hygiene und Mikrobiologie (DGHM)" and the "Gesellschaft für Virologie" (GfV).

DZIF Prize for Translational Infection Research

Prize winners

2021: Ulrike Protzer, Technical University of Munich and Helmholtz Munich

2020: Stephan Becker, Universität Marburg, and Gerd Sutter, LMU München

2019:  Gülşah Gabriel, Heinrich Pette Institute, Hamburg, and Stefan Niemann, Research Center Borstel

2018: Volker Lohmann, Heidelberg University Hospital, and Marylyn Addo, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf

2017: Andreas Peschel, Interfaculty Institute of Microbiology and Infection Medicine Tübingen (IMIT)

2016: Florian Klein, University Hospital Cologne

2015: Markus Gerhard, Technische Universität München

2014: Stephan Urban, Heidelberg University Hospital

DZIF/DGI Dissertation Prize

The German Society for Infectiology e. V. (DGI), together with the DZIF, is offering three dissertation prizes. The prizes are endowed with 500 € each and are awarded once a year.

Prize winners

2021: Jenny Lam, Sebastian Theobald, Melanie Wittner

2020: Felix Köhler, Elena Muscolino, Yassir Adam Shuaib

2019: Ramona Businger, Juan Ruiz-Moreno, Till Omansen

2018: Daniel Todt, Surabhi Goyal, Florian Lempp

2017: Johanna Galaski, Steffen Wiegand, Shuting Xu

2016: Stephanie Pfänder, Jan Naujoks, Angelique Hölzemer

2015: Jara Joedicke, Stephanie Jung and Zuguang Wu

2014: Jan-Moritz Doehn

DZIF/DGHM Dissertation Prize

Prize winners

2021: Manuela Tietgen

2020: Jennifer Rebecca Richardson

2019: Tom Zortel

2018: Tobias Dietsche

2017: Sandrine Brugiroux, Angela Kling and Viktoria Liss

2016: Wiebke Behrens and Alexander Westermann

2015: Anna Müller, Irma Haben and Matthias Merker

2014: Ivo Finsel

DZIF/GfV Dissertation Prize

Prize winners

2021: Kevin Ciminski und Alexander Lercher

2020: Boris Bogdanow

2019: Manuel Albanese

2018: Étori Aguiar Moreira

2017: Florian Lempp

2016: Stephanie Pfänder

2015: Michaela Gerlach

2014: Yuchen Xia


The Academy additionally supports scientific progress and the training of next-generation scientists by enhancing scientific exchange and collaboration between partner sites through workshops, schools and coaching.

Schools and Workshops

  • Summer Schools with a theoretical focus
  • Autumn Schools with a translational and clinical focus: This year's Academy Autumn School will take place in Lübeck from 28-30 September 2022.
  • Workshops of Infrastructures (see events)

Excellence in international scientific communication

A “Masterclass” coaching programme to enhance the preparation, delivery, Q&A management & professional moderation skills for scientific presentations (e.g. conferences, grants & interviews). Guest lecturer: Paul Charlton.

Please note! Due to the current travel and group meeting restrictions imposed as a result of the current Coronavirus pandemic, Paul offers a Zoom-based “Masterclass” programme to develop and enhance the skills for outstanding competency & confidence in professional public speaking.

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