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Urs Lauffer, executive member of the Foundation Board

Our Foundation, set up in spring 2007, aims to fund talented young scholars in Switzerland, Austria and other European countries, on an exclusively non-profit basis. This is done in close co-operation with the universities in Salzburg and Basel.

2022 marks our Foundation’s 15th anniversary. Since we were established, we have been able to support 68 doctoral candidates in Austria and Switzerland to the tune of over CHF 8 million.

In 2021, the University of Salzburg received a sum of EUR 250 000. This support enabled six candidates to continue their doctoral work at the Salzburg Centre of European Union Studies during the year under review. Our Foundation has once again supported the University of Basel with a grant of CHF 100 000 for the key research topic “Africa“. This sum was used to fund two doctoral candidates.

We deeply value the intensive collaboration with the relevant staff at these universities. This is the best way to ensure the quality of the individual research projects, which is regularly monitored by the professors involved. As a basic principle, therefore, the Humer Foundation does not consider applications sent directly to it by doctoral candidates.

The Foundation Board met in two sessions during the year under review. The spring session had to be held online due to the COVID-19 pandemic, while the autumn session was able to take place in Salzburg as planned. The main focus was the evaluation and approval of requests for financial support for doctoral candidates, which was undertaken on the basis of thorough, balanced assessments made by the two universities. In addition, the Foundation’s statutory business (annual accounts, yearly review, auditor’s report, elections) was dealt with.

Furthermore, the Foundation Board periodically reviews the success of funding activities. In doing so, we assess both the effectiveness and efficiency of our work, thus measuring the usefulness and the economic efficiency of the allocation of our Foundation’s resources. Based on this, and using specific individual cases as templates, we then define our Foundation’s goals for the new financial year. And finally, we also deal with all financial issues and risks (including investment principles, which are regularly reviewed and adjusted), and oversee the work of our office.

At the end of 2021, the organisation’s capital totalled over CHF 1.37 million. Favourable market conditions enabled the Foundation to achieve a positive financial result in the year under review and thus slow the erosion of the organisation’s capital. In this light, the Foundation Board is planning to continue its activities until the end of 2024, although the organisation’s capital will inevitably be reduced further over these years.

The office is managed by Lauffer & Frischknecht, a communication management consultancy, on a consultative basis. Stéphanie Ramel takes care of the administra-tion, and Fritz Frischknecht, MA Econ., is responsible for the accounts department. Swiss GAAP FER 21 is used for the annual financial statements.


in CHF

  2021 2020 2019
Financial support 377 000 365 000 330 000
Annual result -340 000 -375 000 -70 000
Organisational capital 1 371 000 1 732 000 2 106 000

Since it was established in 2007, the Foundation has provided financial support totalling around CHF 8,3 million.

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