Press release

GAIN is now Virtual GAIN

Joint press release issued by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the German Research Foundation (DFG)

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Anna Oberle-Brill
GAIN Programme Director
+1 (212) 758-3223-217
(Please remember there is a time zone difference of -6 hours.)

updated on 22 September 2020


Overseas networking meeting for German science

Junior researchers from Germany and researchers from other countries got together with high-ranking representatives from the science community, the political sector and industry at the 20th annual meeting and Talent Fair organised by the German Academic International Network (GAIN) on 28 and 29 August. Due to the corona pandemic, this year’s GAIN conference was held digitally for the first time as “Virtual GAIN”. The conference is the largest networking event outside of Europe that revolves around science and research careers in Germany.

For two days, GAIN turned the spotlight on Germany as a location for conducting research. A variety of digital formats were used to highlight the wide-ranging career opportunities available to researchers in Germany and promote the development of personal networks and contacts. The event was attended not only by the presidents of the host organisations - Professor Dr Katja Becker (DFG), Professor Dr Joybrato Mukherjee (DAAD) and Professor Dr Hans-Christian Pape (Humboldt Foundation) - but also Federal Minister of Education and Research Anja Karliczek. Members of Germany’s Bundestag also were on hand to field questions from researchers during the conference.

Career planning, networking, Talent Fair

The GAIN conference is traditionally held in the United States, but even in its new digital form it continues to have a strong appeal: some 900 persons had registered to take part in the conference. International and German researchers attending GAIN20 had the opportunity to spend four hours on both 28 and 29 August to gather in-depth advice for their future career plans. Possible career moves ranged from professorships at universities or universities of applied sciences to entering the industrial research sector all the way to heading a junior research team or founding a start-up. Workshops delved into successful virtual networks, gave insights into appointment procedures and offered information on tenure track professorships. At the Talent Fair, 60 research institutions presented career options in their facilities and companies - and had job vacancies to offer. Funding organisations additionally talked about fellowships and return programmes. Scientists and researchers presented their latest research findings in a virtual science slam. Approximately 100 institutions took part in Virtual GAIN.

The German Academic International Network

The German Academic International Network (GAIN) is a network for German scientists and researchers who work in North America and elsewhere in the world. GAIN has helped them since 2003 with a diverse programme to establish and maintain contact with German research institutions, prepare them for their return to the German research landscape and help them articulate their interests in dealings with political decision makers. GAIN is a joint initiative of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the German Research Foundation (DFG). It is funded by the Federal Ministry of Research and Education (BMBF). Associated members are the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers, the Leibniz Association, the Max Planck Society, the German Rectors' Conference (Hochschulrektorenkonferenz), German Academic Scholarship Foundation (Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes) and the German Cancer Aid (Deutsche Krebshilfe). A number of collaborative partners from science, industry, and politics regularly support GAIN in its work.

Further information is available at The programme for the meeting can be downloaded here.

(press release 16/2020)

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