The Carlsberg Foundation supports basic research

The Carlsberg Foundation supports basic research and champions the power of science

The Carlsberg Foundation supports visionary and innovative basic scientific research. Research that makes us smarter, addresses global challenges, produces growth and welfare, and is universally beneficial. That is how it has been ever since 1876, when the Foundation was established by J.C. Jacobsen.

One of the Carlsberg Foundation’s most important objectives is to provide support for basic research. The far-sighted Carlsberg brewer, J.C. Jacobsen, was fascinated by science, because the latest research enabled him to achieve his ambition of always producing beer of the highest possible quality. But not just that. J.C. Jacobsen also viewed science in a broader perspective, understanding that scientific progress is a precondition for the continuous positive development of people and society. In his deed of gift to the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters, in which he transferred the brewery to the Carlsberg Foundation, J.C. Jacobsen wrote that he simply enjoyed the spirit and light that he encountered in science. In his own words, science was “a source of joy and well-being”.

Basic research is vital for society

Today, the Carlsberg Foundation is nurturing and developing science through its extensive support for outstanding basic research within the natural sciences, social sciences and humanities. In full accordance with J.C. Jacobsen’s original vision, the Carlsberg Foundation is working purposefully based on the view that basic research is the source of future growth and value creation in society.

The Carlsberg Foundation prioritises basic research in the knowledge that it often produces ground-breaking results that, in time, pave the way for innovation and product development, the establishment of new companies, growth, jobs, and social value and prosperity.

Young researchers tackle global challenges

The Carlsberg Foundation asks all applicants for research funding to reflect on scientific social responsibility (SSR), i.e. how their research can contribute to social development and help overcome, at both local and global level, the Grand Challenges that society is facing: climate change, future energy supplies, the shortage of clean water, new materials, new medicines, population growth, massive refugee flows, conflicts and terrorism, and others. Challenges that only the best researchers with the best projects can help address.

The research that the Carlsberg Foundation supports is conducted by Danish researchers and international researchers connected to Danish research environments, generally universities. In particular, the Foundation wants to promote internationalisation and strengthen the growth layer in Danish research by supporting the most talented young – and not quite so young – researchers. The Carlsberg Foundation therefore sends new PhD graduates to the best universities in the world to give them an international experience and network. The intention is to create a solid growth layer and optimal conditions for implementing continuous generational change in the Danish universities.

The Carlsberg Foundation also prioritises research across scientific disciplines. It is often in cross-over areas and unconventional research collaborations that ground-breaking results are achieved. The Carlsberg Foundation supports the best researchers with the most visionary, promising projects. The individual researchers are given considerable freedom to push the boundaries and are not tied to a specific agenda.

How does the Carlsberg Foundation support basic research?

The Carlsberg Foundation provides funding, upon application, to a Principal Investigator, PI.

The Carlsberg Foundation supports outstanding basic research through the following types of grant:

The Carlsberg Foundation also offers a number of postdoc fellowships to international researchers: