The funding initiative entitled "Europe and Global Challenges" was set up to provide support for research projects predominantly in the humanities and the social sciences. It is required that, beside European scholars, the project involves researchers from at least one other region of the world.
The funding initiative addresses the future challenges facing Europe in respect of climate change, migration, demographic change, and economic uncertainties. The aim is to inspire scholarly interest in such challenges beyond mere cooperation at the European level, and to promote collective supranational action on a global scale.
The funding initiative targets mainly scholars in the humanities and the social sciences, but by no means excludes the possible involvement of other disciplines. Funding can be provided to support the constitution of interdisciplinary groups of international researchers comprising scholars from both European as well as non-European countries. It is a condition that, beside European scholars, the project involves researchers from at least one further region of the world.
The funding initiative "Europe and Global Challenges" was started in 2009 with the aim of prompting research focussing on the changes impacting society at the beginning of the 21st century and to build bridges between academia and practice. It is a joint funding initiative of the Volkswagen Foundation, Wellcome Trust (United Kingdom), and Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (Sweden).
The Foundation’s Board of Trustees decides on applications for funding at meetings which are held usually three times a year.