Scheme for admission of Third Country Researchers to Ireland
Details regarding Ireland’s implementation of Council Directive 2005/71/EC (OJ L 289, 3.11.2005) of 12 October 2005 on a specific procedure for admitting third-country nationals for the purposes of scientific research are set out here.
- Summary of Main Provisions of Directive
- Application of the Directive in Ireland
- Position regarding Family of Researcher
- Eligibility for Long-term Residency
- Immigration Requirements
- List of Accredited Research Organisations in Ireland
- Contact Information for Accreditation of Research Organisations
- Documentation/Application Form for Scheme for Accreditation of Research Organisations (DOC, 99KB)
The text of the Directive can be downloaded here: Council Directive 2005/71/EC (PDF).
The purpose of the Council Directive is to facilitate the admission of third country researchers to EU Member States for the purpose of carrying out research. The mobility of researchers is one of the elements contributing to the goals of the Lisbon Strategy and implementation of the European Research Area. Ireland’s ability to attract high quality researchers is a key element of our Strategy for Science Technology and Innovation.
The entry of third country researchers and their families into Ireland for research purposes has up to now been governed through the green card/work permit system administered by the Employment Permits Section of the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. Researchers are included in the eligible categories of employment for green card purposes. Third country researchers or host institutions, as the case may be, continue to have the option of applying for green cards or work permits.
The regime being established under the Third Country Researchers Directive puts in place an alternative mechanism for entry into Ireland of researchers who come within the scope of the Directive. Existing visa rules continue to apply, i.e. visas are required for citizens of certain countries to enter Ireland.
This paragraph describes some, but not all, of the provisions of the Directive. The Directive provides that the admission of third country researchers into a Member State for more than three months for the purposes of carrying out research is to be on the basis of a “Hosting Agreement” drawn up between the Member State research organisation and the researcher. Only research organisations which have been accredited by the Member State may enter into hosting agreements covered by the Directive. The Directive also specifies certain conditions which must be fulfilled in order for a valid hosting agreement to be signed:
• The research project has been accepted by the research organisation after examination of the purpose and duration of the research, the necessary financial resources and the researcher’s qualifications;
• The researcher has sufficient monthly resources to meet his or her expenses and return travel costs without recourse to the Member State’s social assistance system;
• The researcher has sickness insurance for all the risks normally covered for nationals of the Member State
• The hosting agreement specifies the legal relationship and working conditions of the researcher.
Following signature of a hosting agreement the researcher must be admitted into the Member State subject to the following conditions:
• Presentation of a valid travel document,
• Presentation of a Hosting Agreement,
• Where applicable, presentation of a statement of financial responsibility issued by the research organisation, and
• The person is not considered to pose a threat to public policy, public security or public health.
• Research organisations, both public sector and private sector, which wish to enter into hosting agreements will first be subject to an accreditation process administered by the Office of Science, Technology and Innovation (OSTI), Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, confirming that they conduct research; accreditations will normally be valid for up to 5 years renewable. An up-to-date list of accredited research organisations will be kept on this page.
• Accredited research organisations draw up individual hosting agreements with each researcher covering the research project involved. There will be no approval process or fee for hosting agreements.
• The Directive provides that a researcher employed on the basis of a hosting agreement must have sufficient monthly resources to meet his or her expenses and return travel costs without recourse to the Member State’s social assistance system.
• Research organisations will notify EURAXESS Ireland (Researcher’s Mobility Office) of the details of hosting agreements which have been entered into and will also send copies of the hosting agreements to that Office.
• EURAXESS Ireland will maintain a database of hosting agreements. The immigration authorities will receive updates on hosting agreements entered into for the purpose of enabling them to verify the existence of hosting agreements upon entry of researchers into the State.
• The hosting agreement is used by the researcher for visa applications where applicable, entry into the State and immigration registration.
In order to make the European Community more attractive to third country researchers, the Directive supports the preservation of family unity of researchers coming within the scope of the Directive. The Directive provides that family members should be able to join the researcher under the conditions determined by the national law of the Member State. One of the conditions for entering into a hosting agreement is that the accredited research organisation must ensure that the researcher has sufficient monthly resources to meet his or her expenses, without having recourse to the national social assistance system. Family members (i.e. spouse and dependants) may accompany a researcher on admission into the State or later, subject to compliance with the same admission conditions which apply to the researcher as outlined above. The duration of validity of the residence permit of family members will be the same as that of the researcher. Policy in relation to Spouses and Dependants of Hosting Agreement Holders has been explained here.
A researcher coming within the scope of the Directive and his or her spouse and dependents will be eligible to apply for long-term residence in the State under the same conditions as apply to holders of Green Cards, i.e. 2 years after admission under a Hosting Agreement.
Note: These arrangements are subject to Parliamentary approval of the Immigration, Residence and Protection Bill, 2008. Further details will be published in due course advising holders of Hosting Agreements on how to apply for Long Term Residence, when the legislation has been introduced.
Entry to Ireland and registration with the immigration authorities will remain subject to National Laws and procedure. Researchers who are citizens of certain countries require a visa for entry to Ireland. Citizens of such countries must successfully apply for a visa to enter Ireland before they travel here. Successful visa applicants in possession of a valid hosting agreement will be issued with multi-entry visas.
A residence permit may be withdrawn or renewal refused where the permit has been fraudulently acquired or where it appears that the holder did not meet or no longer meets the conditions for entry and residence required under
the Scheme for Accreditation of Research Organisations. For further details with regard to entry to Ireland please refer to:
Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service, 13/14 Burgh Quay, Dublin 2.
Lo Call: 1890 551 500
Last modified: 19/10/2012