National Research Data Infrastructure – NFDI


What Is the NFDI?


The National Research Data Infrastructure (NFDI) is intended to systematically develop, sustainably secure and make accessible the data holdings of science and research and to network them (inter)nationally. It will be established in a process driven by the scientific community as a networked structure of consortia that act on their own initiative.

DFG – German Research Foundation


Founding of the NFDI


With the NFDI, we are establishing an overarching research data management system in the German science system.

Anja Karliczek



RDM Team


+49 241 80 24680



The Council for Information Infrastructures, RfII for short (in German), recommended the establishment of a national research data infrastructure in May 2016. As a result, the establishment and funding of the NFDI was agreed in the agreement between the federal government and the states on November 26, 2018.

For the funding of the NFDI, the federal and state governments will provide up to 90 million euros annually from 2019 to 2028.

This sum will be used to fund various consortia. The consortia, which form the core of the NFDI, consist of associations of universities, non-university research institutions, departmental research institutions, academies, and other publicly funded information infrastructure institutions or other corresponding stakeholders.

In October 2020, the NFDI Association was founded.


Tender and Decision Process

The tender process was carried out by the German Research Foundation (DFG). In three rounds of bidding, the consortia were determined in 2019, 2020 and 2021 respectively. The decision of the third round of calls was made on November 4, 2022, and the NFDI has since been completed with 26 technical and methodological consortia from four major scientific fields, as well as an additional basic service consortium. An overview of the 26 funded NFDI consortia can be found on the DFG website.

The Base4NFDI basic service consortium plays a special role as a consortium network and it will provide services such as storage and computing services for the consortia in the future.

The Joint Science Conference, GWK for short, made the decisions on the funded consortia based in each case on a recommendation by the NFDI Expert Panel, which had proposed the initiatives for funding to the GWK as the result of an intensive review and evaluation process. Some of the consortia have made their consortium proposals available to the public. These can be viewed, among other places, on the NFDI Zenodo Community Collection set up for this purpose.


Funded Consortia with Affiliations of RWTH Aachen University

RWTH Aachen University is one of the strongest universities in Germany that is involved in NFDI. It acts as an applicant, as a co-applicant and as a participant. The following table provides an overview of the RWTH affiliations.

Consortium RWTH Affiliation
Status Participating institutions
NFDI4Cat – for Sciences Related to Catalysis, Chemistry and Physics Division, 2020.


Heterogeneous Catalysis and Industrial Chemistry
NFDI4Chem – Specific Chemistry Consortium in the NFDI, Chemistry and Physics Division, 2020


Bioinorganic Chemistry

IT Center

NFDI4Ing – National Research Data Infrastructure for Engineering, Engineering and Mathematics Division, 2020. Applicant

Lab for Machine Tools and Production Engineering

IT Center

Aerodynamic Institute (AIA)

EXC 2023 Internet of Production

EXC 2186 Fuel Science Center

Fraunhofer IPT


University Library

DAPHNE4NFDI – Consortium for Photon and Neutron Experiments, Chemistry and Physics Division, 2021


Solid-State and Quantum Chemistry and Inorganic Chemistry
FAIRmat – Consortium for Condensed Matter Physics and Chemical Physics of Solids, Chemistry and Physics Division, 2021. Participant DWI – Leibniz-Institute for Interactive Materials
NFDI4DataScience – Consortium for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, Engineering and Mathematics Division, 2021. Co-Applicant Information Systems and Databases
NFDI4Earth – Earth System Science Consortium, Life and Earth Sciences Division, 2021. Participant Earth Sciences and Geography
NFDI4Microbiota – Consortium for Microbiology, Division of Life and Earth Sciences, 2021. Co-Applicant Institute of Medical Microbiology
NFDI4MatWerk – Consortium for Materials Science and Engineering, Engineering and Mathematics Division, 2021


Materials Data Science and Informatics

IT Center

Structure and Function of Materials

SFB 1394 Structural and Chemical Atomic Complexity

Profile Area Materials Science & Engineering (MatSE)

PUNCH4NFDI – Consortium of Particle, Astroparticle, Hadron and Nuclear Physics, Division of Chemistry and Physics, 2021. Participant Physics Institute IIIA
Base4NFDI – Basic services for NFDI, 2023 (consortium network) Co-Applicant All the institutions that are main applicants of a consortium are co-applicants.
NFDI4Energy – Consortium for Interdisciplinary Energy Systems Research, Engineering and Mathematics Division, 2023 Co-Applicant Automation of Complex Power Systems
NFDI4Objects – Consortium for the Material Legacies of Human History, Division of Humanities and Social Sciences, 2023 Participant Chair of Architectural History
NFDIxCS –Consortium for and with Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics Division, 2023.


IT Center

Software Engineering