Germany has always been known as an important location for industry – namely for the car industry and its mechanical and process plant engineering – and for being a global player in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry. In the upcoming sectors of biotech and nanotechnology, Germany is also way out in front. According to the Bloomberg Innovation Index, Germany ranks fourth among the most innovative countries worldwide (as of 2021).
Your career as a scientist in Germany
Germany has a plethora of jobs for scientists and mathematicians. Aside from the usual positions in research, teaching and management, scientists and mathematicians also work in the IT sector, in marketing and sales, in the fields of administration and law, and in the financial sector. The industries that are mostly looking for scientists and mathematicians are the following:
Energy engineering and environmental engineering
Working as a researcher in Germany
The German research landscape is exceptionally vast. Universities and research are not the only institutions carrying out research; many companies have their own R&D departments. You can also carry out research as a PhD student (Doktorandin or Doktorand) and earn money in the process. Certain research teams or companies offer to fund your research while writing your dissertation; other research teams and/or universities offer fellowship programmes.
If finding a job position from abroad appears to be challenging, it is possible to enter Germany for a period of 6 months after completing your studies in order to look for a job. You can find out which requirements need to be fulfilled to apply for a visa for jobseekers in the "Visa for jobseekers" section.
Would you like to work as a scientific researcher and need a visa to work in Germany? Then you have two options. You can either apply for a visa for research or the EU Blue Card for this purpose. You should therefore check the requirements for each residence permit and whether you fulfil them.
✔ Your career prospects: With our Quick-Check, you can find out about the opportunities available to you for working and living in Germany.
✔ The German employment market: Find more information on job-hunting and get useful tips in our “Looking for a job” section.
Knowledge of the German language is not mandatory to work as a scientist or mathematician in Germany. However, speaking German will make your entry into the labour market and your day-to-day life in Germany easier. You can find more information on learning opportunities in the "Learning German" section.
A doctoral thesis is the academic document written to obtain the title of doctor in a doctorate.
A residence permit entitles people from abroad to enter and reside in Germany. Residence permits may be granted in the form of a visa, residence permit, an EU Blue Card, a settlement permit, or a permanent EC residence permit.
The Immigration Act provides for two titles which govern entry and residence in Germany: the settlement permit (Niederlassungserlaubnis) and the residence permit (Aufenthaltserlaubnis). The residence permit is temporary and is granted for a specific reason, such as gainful employment, training or family reunification, or else for humanitarian, legal or political reasons.