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35 Years Driving Frontier Life Science Research for the Benefit of Humanity

Established 35 years ago by the G7 nations and the European Commission, the International Human Frontier Science Program Organization (HFSPO) is headquartered in Strasbourg, France, and supported by 17 Members, 16 countries, and the European Commission.

HFSPO supports pioneering, interdisciplinary, and internationally collaborative research in the life sciences by funding research where there are no prior studies or data. In other words, research that would not normally be funded through national channels. For more information, see our Getting to Know Us document online or download.

Over 35 years, HFSPO-supported scientists have won 29 Nobel Prizes.Three HFSPO-supported scientists have won both the Nakasone Award and the Nobel Prize:

  • Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna won the Nakasone Award in 2016 for their work on the CRISPR-Cas9 system and the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
  • Svante Pääbo won the Nakasone Award in 2018 for his work on how hybridization with Neanderthals and Denisovans has shaped the evolution of modern humans and the 2022 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine.

HFSPO funds HFSP Research Grants and Fellowships to drive pioneering research in the life sciences by only selecting only the most imaginative, most daring investigations. All projects involve international collaboration – preferably intercontinental. HFSP Research Grants and Fellowships are among the most coveted in the world and in 35 years since HFSPO’s inception.

“For 35 years, HFSPO has worked to advance the most creative, most adventurous frontiers in the life sciences,” said HFSPO Secretary-General Pavel Kabat. “International collaboration and cross-disciplinary research among diverse scientists is the foundation of this work: this is how we learn to see science from new perspectives.”

HFSP Research Grants

Each year, HFSP awards, on average, 35 HFSP Research Grant Awards; between 1990-2024, 4604 worldwide scientists have secured 1280 awards. Over 30 years, awards have been valued at between 250,000 USD and currently at 400,000 USD per year per team of two to four scientists and lasts for three years.

In 2024, 34 HFSP Research Grant projects were awarded internationally. To view their research abstracts, visit the 2024 Research Grant Awardees. Booklet

HFSP Fellowships

Each year, HFSP awards about 60 fellowships to postdoctoral researchers to work on innovative research in a laboratory in a country different from where their Ph.D. was conferred or where they did their initial postdoctoral training. The opportunity greatly expands their knowledge base and network, while contributing to the host laboratory. Each fellowship is valued at about 200,000 USD, depending on the host country, and lasts for three years. Between 1990 and 2024, HFSP awarded 3533 Postdoctoral Fellowships to scientists of 76 nationalities.  

In 2024, 59 HFSP Fellowships have been awarded internationally. To view their research abstracts, visit 2024 Fellowship Awardees Booklet.