The evaluation of the funding framework “Verbundforschung” (collaborative research) in the area of “basic natural science research” focused on the ex-post success monitoring as well as an ex-ante evaluation in order to develop recommendations for the future design of the instrument. The evaluation team analyzed the success and impact of the measure in the years 2006 to 2014. More than 1,000 funded projects in four research sub-categories with a total volume of 575 million euros were analyzed. The ex-ante evaluation was based on the results of the completed ex-post evaluation. Besides trend analyses for the research sub-categories, it also included an expert audit in which leading researchers participated. International case studies allowed a comparison with other countries. The project was carried out in a consortium with Technopolis Deutschland GmbH and the Fraunhofer INT.