1. Find your ideal research position
If you would like to continue working as a researcher after having earned a doctoral degree, a postdoc position is a logical career step. The postdoc phase in Germany is regarded as qualification gaining further experience in research, teaching and developing other skills. Postdoctoral researchers may be employed by the University of Stuttgart as research associates on a temporary basis. An employed research associate is usually expected to hold seminars and/or support doctoral students. It is also possible to carry out postdoctoral research as a vistiting researcher. In this case the stay is usally financed by a fellowship or grant. Fellowship-holders are usually able to fully concentrate on their own research project.
A stay as a visiting researcher or professor can last from one month to more than a year. Visiting reserachers are not employed at the University of Stuttgart. A research stay as a visiting researcher however might enable you to realize your own research project or can be organized within the context of an international partnership. If you want to work as a visiting researcher at the University of Stuttgart, contact a professor of an institute of your interest. If you and the institute agree on a topic as well as on a certain period of time, the institute will invite you to join the University of Stuttgart as a visiting researcher.
In general, there are different possibilities to fund your research stay in Germany: public sector funding, EU funding, industry funding, as well as funding by foundations and scholarship organisations. A detailed overview is given on the websites of Research in Germany. While the first three funding sources usually finance large-scale research projects, the latter finance research stays of individual persons.
The best-known research funding organisations are the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG). Further research programms can be found on the pages of ELFI (Elektronische ForschungsförderInformationen).
If you are employed by the University of Stuttgart, you will receive a monthly salary. Please notice that income tax, contributions to statutory health insurance as well as to other statutory social security schemes will automatically be deducted from your gross salary.
The amount one receives through fellowships and grants to do research work as a postdoc or visiting researcher depends on the researcher’s status and career level as well as on the funding organization. A fellowship is usually sufficient to make a living in Germany. Supplementary allowances for getting adequate health insurance, benefits for children or grants for participating in conferences are usually given upon request.
If you come to do research at the University of Stuttgart within the context of an international collaboration between your home institution and our university, temporary stays are usually financed by means granted by the collaboration program.
Of course it is also possible to finance your stay by other means, e.g. through your salary from your home institute/university or by a grant from your home country. If so, please make sure that it is sufficient to support your costs of living in Stuttgart.
2. Preparatory Adminstrative Steps
All citizens from the EU as well as citizens from Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland do not require a visa to enter Germany nor a work permit to take up work.
Non-EU citzens require a visa to enter Germany. The application for a researcher's visa must be filed at the German embassy or consulate office in your home country or the country where you reside in at present. Even for Non-EU citizens who are allowed to enter Germany (e.g. USA, Canada, South Korea, Australia, etc.) without visa, we strongly recommend to apply for a visa at the embassy while still being in abroad. To apply for a researcher's visa you need a so-called "Hosting Agreement". The Hosting Agreement is a formal agreement which is issued by the University of Stuttgart and needs to signed by the university's legal representative (rector) and yourself.
After arrival all Non-EU citizens need to apply for a residence permit at the Foreigners' Registration Office in the town where they take up residence if they plan to stay longer than 90 days and/or the visa issued by the embassy/consulate office will expires before the scheduled departure date.
If you as a Non-EU citizen who can enter Germany without visa, do so, please note that you cannot start to do research unless you have been issued a residence permit by the local Foreigners' Registration Office.
To find a suitable and reasonably priced apartement for you and your family can be quite time consuming. We therefore recommend you book a hostel, a low-budget hotel, an airbnb or short-term apartment for the first days or weeks of your stay. Also check out the following websites from the Studierendenwerk Stuttgart:
- CAMPUS.Guest on Campus Vaihingen
- Guest house (Gastdozentenhaus) of the University of Stuttgart. Ask your institute to book for you.
We recommend purchasing travel insurance while you are still at home for the time of your journey and the first weeks in Stuttgart.
Please note: a travel insurance is not mandatory. However, it is obligatory to take out a health insurance which is valid in Germany upon arrival. The Welcome Center will assist you in finding a suitable one for you and your family.
3. Registration at the Welcome Center
We will be happy to help you with the preparations for your stay in Stuttgart. We therefore kindly request you to fill in and send us the following online form. This allows us to offer you personalized services according to your needs.