OER Communities: New BMBF Initiative Supports Development for Open Educational Resources

National funding initiative is aimed at projects for the strengthening, expansion and networking of Open Educational Resources (OER) Communities in Germany.

As part of the national Open Educational Resources (OER) Strategy which is designed to realise a sustainable OER-friendly ecosystem in digital education in Germany, this funding opportunity by Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF – Federal Ministry for Education and Research) funds projects that support the development and expansion of OER communities.

The aim of the scheme is to strengthen existing communities and their organisational structures, as well as support networking among relevant actors and organisations to recruit more participants. It also aims to assist the establishment of new OER communities that meet particular needs.

Funding is provided for innovative projects that are based on educational practice and that are supported by research activities. Both individual projects as well as collaborative projects that bring together multiple partners in a consortium are supported.

To be considered for funding, projects must address and align with previous and current activities in the field of OER.

Eligible to apply are organisations in Germany that work in the field of open educational resources. This includes in particular:

  • Carriers of educational institutions.
  • Teacher training centres.
  • Organisations dedicated to teaching methodology.
  • Commercial businesses, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SME).
  • Vocational training bodies.
  • Establishments for lifelong learning.
  • Research institutions and institutions of higher education (Hochschulen).
  • Media institutes (media developers and media educators).
  • Associations.

Funding is provided in the form of a project grant on the basis of project-related eligible costs. The funding period is set between 12 and 36 months. Institutions of higher education and non-commercial research institutions are eligible for full funding. Funding levels for commercial partners are generally capped at 50%.

The scheme comprises a two-stage application process. Initially, applicants are invited to submit an outline proposals. This is then followed by the submission of a full, formal funding application for selected candidates.

The deadline for outline proposals is 30 June 2023.

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