Must I also submit interim progress reports during the course of the project?

Yes, but these are only short reports (one-page) submitted on a yearly basis (exceptions: SFB, NFN, DK, doc.funds), which are included with the annual accounts at the end of each calendar year and serve as proof of the expenditures.

Can the deadline for submitting the final report be extended?

If the deadline specified by the FWF for submitting the final report cannot be met, the principal investigator must send a free-form request for an extension within a reasonable amount of time before the end of the deadline. In this case, please contact the FWF and give a brief explanation (martina.kunzmann(at)

When must I prepare the documents for the project evaluation?

The only requirement is a report at the end of the project (exceptions: SFB, NFN, DK), which must contain comprehensive information about the project’s progress and outcomes throughout the entire duration of the project.

What happens if the final project report is not submitted?

If a final project report is not submitted, the FWF will send a one-time reminder by registered mail. If the project report is not submitted within 30 days of this reminder, the FWF will stop payment of all FWF-funded research projects of the principal investigator, as well as the processing of any new research proposals submitted to the FWF. This ban shall be lifted once the missing final report has been submitted.

How is the final report to be submitted?

In January 2019, the FWF launched an online system from Researchfish. Therefore, all projects that will end on or after 2 February 2019 are to be submitted electronically using this system. This applies for all the following FWF programmes:

How can I get the access link?

The principal investigators receive an email from the FWF when a final project report is supposed to be submitted via the system. After that, Researchfish will send the principal investigator the link and the login details (the sender is admin(at) If the principal investigator does not yet have a Researchfish account, one must be created via the link. Once an account has been created, it is also valid for future projects.

I did not receive an access link to the system. Who should I contact about this?

Please be aware that the access link is sent via an automatically generated email from admin(at) and thus might have accidentally landed in your spam folder. If you also cannot find the email there, you can contact the FWF (martina.kunzmann(at) about this manner at any time. You also have the option to have the link sent to you personally. Go to, select the funding agency and enter your name. After that, you can search for the project and request an access link, which will be sent to you via email.

What information am I supposed to enter in the research documentation system?

In general, we would ask you to report on all the key outcomes of the project that have already been published. On our website, you can find a list of the common outcomes which are of particular interest in each FWF programme and the mandatory additional questions that have to be addressed:

What sections must be included in the final report?

The final report consists of the “Common Outcomes” and the “Mandatory Additional Questions” sections. Relevant information is to be provided in both sections as part of the final project report. In addition, a narrative report is requested, which can be uploaded as a PDF in the FWF Final Report section. The requirements are available for download on the page of the respective FWF programme:


I cannot report any project outcomes (yet), or the “common outcomes” do not apply for my project. What should I do?

In this case, we would ask you to answer all the questions in the “Mandatory Additional Questions” section. The required contents are the “FWF Final Report” and the “FWF Summaries for Public Relations”. You must at least respond to the yes/no question about whether you want to/can report or provide feedback here on the other questions, even if they do not apply to your project, so you can successfully submit the final report via the system.

Is there an overview of the possible inputs and subtypes in the “Common Outcomes” section?

Yes. It can be found here.

Can I add staff members to my account?

Yes. Please watch this short video to learn how to add staff members.

What is the difference between a “Delegate” and a “Research Team Member”?

The differences in editing rights between a “Delegate” and a “Research Team Member” are as follows:

Delegate: The Delegate can edit all reports, but the information entered is not added to the Delegate’s own portfolio.

Research Team Member: The Research Team Member can edit the “Common Outcomes” section, but not the “Mandatory Additional Questions” section. The information entered is added to the Research Team Member’s portfolio and can be reused.

How can I add project outcomes in Researchfish?

Please watch this video to learn how to add project outcomes.

How can I send the final report to the FWF?

Please watch this video to learn how to send a final report.

Must I send the FWF a hard copy of the final report?


Where can conferences be entered?

  • Publications on conferences (proceedings and abstracts) can be entered under “Publications” in the “Common Outcomes” section.
  • “Personal invitation as keynote or other named speaker to a conference” and “Poster/abstracts prize” can be entered under “Awards & Recognition” in the “Common Outcomes” section.
  • Conference attendances and other matters pertaining to conferences can be included in the FWF Final Report in Section 4 “Other important aspects”.

Where can I enter relevant project outcomes that have not been published yet?

The research documentation system only collects outcomes that have already been published. However, project outcomes can be collected up to five years after the end of the project. Unpublished outcomes can be included in the narrative FWF Final Report in Section 4 “Other important aspects”.

Must I enter information about “Collaborations & Partnerships” in both the “Common Outcomes” as well as the “Mandatory Additional Questions” sections?

No, all the FWF needs for its statistics is the information in the “Mandatory Additional Questions” section. If you would like to provide additional information, or report not only on individual people, but also networks, consortia, initiatives, etc., you can do so in the “Common Outcomes” section.

I have linked my Researchfish account to my ORCID ID, but the system cannot find any publications. What is the reason for this?

In order to import publications successfully, these must first be set to visible in ORCID. Please note: Currently, publications must have a persistent identifier (DOI) in order to be imported.

I have deposited publications in the preprint server arXiv. Must I still enter these manually?

No. Although arXiv itself is not available as an import function, you can still use the persistent identifier of NASA/ADS or Inspire/HEP to speed up the uploading process.

Does the open access requirement apply for all publications?

No, this only applies for peer-reviewed publications. Further information on this can be found here.

Schrödinger Programme: Are there any requirements for the “Confirmation of host institution”?

No, there are no specific requirements. It is a free-form confirmation of the research institution about the duration of the stay. Please send it by ordinary post or email to martina.kunzmann(at) You can also attach it to the PDF of the “FWF Final Report”.

What is the purpose of the portfolio?

The portfolio contains all the entries ever made in the “Common Outcomes” section, which can then be reassigned at will to other projects. The portfolio can be viewed only by the principal investigator and the added Team Members/Delegates.

Can I simply view my final project report online without having to download it?

No, all entries can be downloaded as a single document by means of “Download Award and Outcome Data” and are then available as a doc.x file in “My Downloads”.  Here, you can choose between downloading the final report you submitted or individual sections under “Live data”.

Can project outcomes be collected even after the final project report has been submitted?

Additional project outcomes can be collected up to five years after the end of the project. An annual reminder will be sent to the principal investigators.

What evaluation guidelines are there for reviewers?

Since the introduction of the global budget, the FWF not only conducts an ex-ante evaluation of funding proposals, but also an ex-post review of the projects. Reviewers who had been entrusted with the original application are requested to give a final evaluation of how the project progressed and its ultimate success.

The launch of the new system has now also made it possible to submit online reviews. Reviewers receive access and read permission to the respective project and can write their respective reviews on the final report there. Afterwards, these will be made available to the PI to view and print. Only the principal investigator, the reviewers, and the FWF have access to these reviews; project staff members do not automatically receive access.

Reviewers are requested to comment on the following items:  

  • Scientific/scholarly success of the project
  • Development of human resources in the course of the project
  • Effects of the project beyond the research field (in the sense of applications in or impacts on social, cultural, ecological, medical, economic and/or technological areas)
  • Project performance (in the sense of efficient use of available resources)
  • Future perspectives of the research work

Reviewers are requested to provide a numerical rating regarding the overall assessment of the project. This rating will be passed on to the principal investigator if the project has been approved after May 2015.

You can download the guidelines for reviewers via the following link: Review Guidelines

What happens with my project report?

The summaries and previously published publications are released to the public. If the summaries cannot be made available to the public for specific reasons, you can indicate this in the system and provide an explanation.

Key data from the report (publications, scientific and scholarly studies, collaborations, and other outcomes such as patents, licenses, etc.) are reviewed on a regular basis.

The report is reviewed by one of the independent reviewers who had also reviewed the project during the submission stage. The principal investigator can examine the review in its entirety and has the opportunity to comment on it. The reviews and comments remain with the FWF.

What purpose does the review of my project report serve?

The review of the project report is intended to provide applicants with feedback to help them assess their work in an international context and to offer them some tips for their future plans. The review also provides the FWF with information so it can continue to adapt its procedures and rules. The reviews of previously completed projects can be drawn on to help make decisions concerning any future projects submitted by the applicant. The data collected enables detailed impact analyses and programme analyses to be conducted, with which the effectiveness of the FWF’s work can be evaluated.

Are all final project reports reviewed?

No, the following FWF programmes no longer have a final review:

  • Schrödinger Programme
  • Meitner Programme
  • Firnberg Programme
  • Richter Programme (incl. Richter PEEK)
  • Joint Seminars
  • Joint Projects/ERA NET Calls, whose lead agency was NOT the FWF
  • Top Citizen Science Funding Initiative
  • Science Communication Programme
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