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MA-Students, Doctoral and Postdoctoral Researchers

Scholarships for Research Stays in Canada

GKS Prizes for MA-Theses

Each year two GKS-Prizes (EUR 1,200 each) are awarded to students of all disciplines whose diploma, state examination, or master’s thesis deal with a Canada-specific topic and therefore require a research trip to Canada. The funding facilitates work in Canada, such as field studies, library work, interviews, etc. for the preparation or completion of the respective project.

The application form is available for download as a docx file here.

Jürgen and Freia Saße Award for Indigenous Studies

The Jürgen and Freia Saße Award is given annually to a student working on a diploma-, state examination-, master’s or doctoral thesis dealing with Aboriginal People in Canada. The prize of EUR 1,200 is a financial grant for project-related academic studies in Canada. Application is open to students from all disciplines (e.g. Art, Linguistics, Geology, Geography, Anthropology) whose theses require a research stay in Canada. The board or an appointed committee decides on awarding the prize. The family of Jürgen and Freia Saße expresses the wish to meet the winner in person and to see the completed work.

The application form is available for download as a docx file here.

Prizes for Finishes Research

The Excellence Award of the Quebec Government

In cooperation with the Association internationale des études québécoises (AIÉQ), the Association for Canadian Studies in German-speaking Countries (GKS) annually awards the Prix d’Excellence du Gouvernement du Québec. The government of Québec endows the prize and presents it to the recipient at the GKS annual conference in Grainau each year through a representative of the delegation in Munich. The prize carries an award of 3,000 $ Cdn. Parallel applications for other GKS awards and prizes are not permissible.

The prize is awarded to early career researchers (students, doctoral students) who have submitted an excellent thesis (Master, Diplom, Staatsexamen or Ph.D.) at a German, Austrian, or Swiss university or who have published a scholarly work in the field of Québec studies. The prize is addressed at early career researchers in the humanities and social sciences, e.g. cultural studies, literature, linguistics, political or social sciences, history, economics, etc. It aims at enhancing the visibility of scholarly works by early career researchers, so all kinds of academic work (articles, monographs, collections or similar) are admissible.

By handing in their application, candidates commit themselves to write a summary in German and in French of max. 300 words each.

Furthermore, the following criteria for admissibility apply:

  • Works must have been written or published in either German or French.
  • Works must deal with topics specific to Québec or Québec Studies. Works dealing with Canada (all other provinces or concerning the federal level) are not admissible.
  • Only those theses or works are admissible which have been handed in or published within the last two years prior to the prize being bestowed.

The application form is available for download as a docx file here.

The Gabriele Helms Prize for Canadian Fiction and Cultural Narratology

In memory of German Canadian literary scholar Gabriele Helms, the GKS annually awards the Gabriele Helms Prize for Canadian Fiction and Cultural Narratology. After finishing her studies in Cologne and completing her PhD in Canada (UBC), Helms taught first at Simon Fraser University and later at the University of British Colmbia. At the age of 38, Gabriele Helms passed away from cancer only a couple of days after giving birth to her daughter. The prize, donated by Vera and Ansgar Nünning, commemorates Gabriele Helms as a person (as an inspiring teacher in the areas of Life Writing and Canadian Studies) and especially her contribution to narratology, among others, her study Challenging Canada: Dialogism and Narrative Technique in Canadian Novels (Montréal 2003).

The Gabriele Helms Prize for Canadian Fiction and Cultural Narratology is awarded for an outstanding dissertation on anglophone Canadian fiction and/or cultural narratology. It is worth EUR 1,000. The board or an appointed committee decides on awarding the prize. To be eligible, candidates must have completed their PhD no more than three years prior to their application.

The application form is available for download as a docx file here.

Travel Grants

The GKS supports the participation of early career researchers, who are members of the GKS, in scholarly events. To apply for the grant, it is necessary to give a presentation clearly referencing Canada in the event attended. The annual conference of the GKS and the conference of the Emerging Scholars Forum are excluded from this grant.

Scholars whose request for funding is granted may not apply the following year. Please note that complete funding of all expenses is not possible, since travel grants are covered by the regular GKS budget. Send your applications to the GKS office at least two weeks prior to the biannual board meetings, that is, no later than by January 31 and June 1st. Travel grants do not exceed the maximum amount of EUR 500.


  • The applicant must be a GKS member.
  • The applicant presents a scholarly contribution at a Canadian Studies event.
  • Applicant must send a report to the GKS office within three weeks after the conference.
  • Original receipts must be presented to the treasurer.

Only complete applications will be considered. Applications should include,

  • An adequate professional statement, indicating the reasons why taking part in the event is important.
  • an event program;
  • a budget plan;
  • a detailed CV that documents a clear academic emphasis in Canadian Studies
  • as well as other information relevant to the event.

Travels that are already partly sponsored by other institutions (DFG, DAAD, etc.) will not be considered. If you have simultaneously applied for other sponsoring, please explicitly note this in your application. Disbursement will usually be done after the applicant has handed in the required receipts and a conference report. You cannot apply for travel grants retroactively. Applications must be sent to the GKS office prior to the conference you want to attend and prior to the deadlines mentioned above. As a rule, only one application per person will be considered at each application deadline.

Please find a downloadable application form here.

Scholarships of the Foundation for Canadian Studies

The Foundation for Canadian Studies offers grants to partially cover travel expenses for research stays in Canada. Applicants are expected to cover some of their costs through other means. The grant awarded will depend on the funds available to the Foundation (as a general rule, this will be a one-time grant of between 1.000 and a maximum of 3.000 Euro).

(1) Travel grants for doctoral students for research stays in Canada

(2) Travel grants for established academics (with already completed Ph.D.) for research stays in Canada

(3) Travel grants to prepare for research grant applications: for exploratory/preliminary research and/or the development of research grant applications

Applicants must be German, Austrian or Swiss citizens or, alternatively, must pursue their Ph.D. or be employed at a German, Austrian or Swiss University.  Applications can be put forward at any time. The deadline for applications for grants to be awarded for the following year is November 1 of the current year.

For more information please visit the Foundation for Canadian Studies‘ Homepage.