It is generally acknowledged that research organizations require public support to perform research and development activities. In this context, projects grants play a continuously increasing role that, particularly, aim at strengthening network relationships among the actors within an innovation system. Given that, the Halle Institute for Economic Research has investigated whether public research subsidies (i.e. research grants) in the Free State of Saxony promote networks and provide the basis for future cooperation activities. Results of this study suggest that research grants in Saxony, given the self-assessment of the supported scientists, are conducive to the establishment of network relationships (including also industry actors) and can further contribute to make a better use of cooperation agreements in the future.