Residence Permit for Scientific Research

Residence Permit for Scientific Research

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Residence Permit for Scientific Research

Entrance to Italy and residency for the purposes of scientific research is permitted for foreign national citizens who possess a higher-level qualification that, in the country where it was carried out, can be followed by a Doctorate. The foreign national researcher can enter Italy and reside on national territory for a period longer than three months and this does not fall under the restrictions set in place by the annual Immigration Quota. 

The foreign national researcher who wishes to carry out a scientific research project must first of all be selected by a research institute that has been approved by the Ministry for Education, University an Research (MIUR)

The research project must be approved by the Research Institute's administration board who evaluate the research subject, the qualifications held by the foreign national in relation to the research and the availability of funding required to carry out the research. The research institute that invites the foreign national researcher must: 

  • stipulate an reception agreement and a research project together with the researcher, specifying the terms of employment and his/her salary which must be at least double the value of the monthly social security payment. Monthly payments, outlined in the agreement that establishes the working conditions of the researcher can come from, not just the research institute that draws up the agreement but also the European Union financial funding body,  an international organisation, another research institute or  an external body that can be assimilated.
  • take care of the travel expenses;
  • stipulate a health insurance policy or organise for the researcher to be registered with the national health service

Issuing the Nulla Osta / Authorisation

The research institute, after having drawn up the reception agreement, initiates procedures in order to apply for the nulla osta at the Immigration Help Desk in the Precture's office located in the Province where the research is to be carried out. The application for the nulla osta must be accompanied by a certified registration in the Ministry for University and Research (MIUR) directory and an authenticated copy of the reception agreement. The Help Desk, having obtained approval from the relevant regional police headquarters (questura) and having verified the completeness of the paperwork, issues a nulla osta to the research institute and proceeds with the electronic communication of said authorisation to the Italian diplomatic representative in the researcher's country of residence, so that the entrance visa can be issued.

Issuing the Entrance Visa

The researcher, after having received the nulla osta, within 6 months, can pply for an entrance visa at the Italian Consolate's offices in his/her country of residence. Once he/she has obtained the entrance visa from the Consular representative, he/she can enter Italy.

Issiung the Residence Permit

The researcher, once in Italy, must advise the research institute of his/her arrival by sending a copy of the entrance visa, a copy of his/her passport and the date of arrival in Italy. The research institute must, within 8 working days from the date of arrival in Italy, contact the relevant Immigration Help Desk to make an appointment to draw up the residence contract and initiate procedures for the application of a residence permit, the only document that legitimises the presence of the foreign national in Italy for the purpose and duration indicated on his/her entrance visa. The residence permit for scientific purposes is applied for and subsequently issued for the duration of the research programme and allows the holder to carry out the activity indicated in the reception agreement, in the form of subordinate employment, autonomous employment or research training scholarship. If the research programme is extended, the residence permit is renewed for the duration of this extension, subject to the presentation of the renewed reception agreement. While waiting for the residence permit to be issued, the research activity can proceed. Holders of residence permits for scientific purposes are subject to the same regulations foreseen for holders of the residence permit for study purposes and professional training.

The researcher is permitted to apply for family reunification. In fact, the family members are issued with a residence permit with the same duration as that of the researcher.

Characteristics of the Residence Permit

This permit can only be converted to a residence permit for family reasons or for elective residence. It's duration is not calculable for the issiung of the EU long term residence permit. 

Researchers admitted to other European Union member states

A foreign national citizen who is admitted to another EU member state as a researcher can enter Italy without an entrance visa to continue research already initiated in another member state, in the following situations: 

  • stays up to three months: the nulla osta is substituted by a communication to be made to the Immigration Help Desk in the province where the research is to be carried out. This communication must be accompanied by an authenticated copy of the reception agreement stipulated in the other member state that includes a period of research in Italy, a certification of the availability of funds, a healthy insurance policy that is valid for the entire duration of the stay in Italy and a declaration from the research institute where the research is to be carried out.
  • stays over three months: a nulla osta must be issued, that is conditional to the stipulation of the reception agreement with the University. In such a case, the procedure explained above for researchers entering Italy apply. Therefore, the researcher must apply for a residence permit. 


All information about how to apply for or renew a residence permit

Last update: venerdì 25 novembre 2016
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