New BMBF Initiative Funds Research for Data Trust Models

Up to €500,000 provided for research projects in Germany that investigate and develop practice-oriented solutions for Data Trust models (DTM) with a focus on legal, technological and organisational components.

Acknowledging the vital importance of data access and data sharing for the German economy and its innovation potential, this funding initiative by Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF – Federal Ministry for Education and Research) is designed to support the further establishment of innovative Data Trust models (DTM, Datentreuhandmodelle) for improved data supply and usage, and stronger data-related innovation in research, industry, public administration and civil society. The focus is particularly on the developments for legal, technological and organisational components for DTM, taking into account framework conditions such as the European Data Governance Act (DGA), and building on new insights from basic research.

Funding is provided for research and development of Data Trust models (DTM) with a particular focus on research for individual, innovative components (building blocks) for data custodianship (Datentreuhänderschaft) in the areas of business and organisational models, improved acceptance of DTM and their scaling, technical components and legal aspects as well as their practical implementation and evaluation.

The initiative supports projects that are carried out by individual organisations as well as projects that bring together multiple partners in a consortium. Projects may address one or several of the following thematic areas:

  1. Components for viable businesses and operational models for data custodians.
  2. Components for better scaling and more acceptance of DTM.
  3. Technical Components of DTM.
  4. Legal aspects of data custodianship.

Projects that address other, related topics which contribute to the overall aims of the funding initiative may also be considered for funding.

Eligible to apply are the following types of organisations in Germany:

  • Public and private institutions of higher education (Hochschulen).
  • Non-educational research institutions.
  • Commercial businesses, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SME).
  • Non-commercial institutions such as foundations and charitable associations.

Projects must commence by 15 October 2023 and be completed by 31 December 2025.

Funding is provided in the form of a project-grant over a period of up to 28 months. The maximum funding amount per project is €500,000. This is designed to cover project-related personnel, material and travel costs.

The deadline for funding applications is 30 March 2023 (12:00 CET).

(This report was the subject of a RESEARCHconnect Newsflash.)