Working in Germany: the official website
for qualified professionals

Career in research in Germany

Germany offers you many opportunities to advance your career in research.

Guest lectureship at a university: As a guest lecturer, you can carry out teaching and research activities at German universities for a limited period of time. A guest lectureship has advantages for everyone: The students at the university benefit from your expertise and intercultural perspective. You, in turn, can gain new experience at a German university as well as professional and methodological impulses for your own work.

Employment at a university: Of course, you can also apply for a vacancy at a German university. Many universities and universities of applied sciences are looking for international reinforcement. In addition to that, you can also combine a job as a research assistant with a doctoral thesis.

Employment in the R&D sector of a company: International researchers have good prospects of finding a job in German companies. There is particularly high demand for skilled workers in areas with an insufficient number of qualified applicants in Germany. These include engineers and IT specialists.

If you are interested in doing research in Germany, also feel free to visit the "Research in Germany" portal.


5 steps to research in Germany

1. Looking for a job: 

If you want to work in research in Germany, it is best to start looking for a job in your home country. You can find numerous job portals online that offer a job search specifically for research and science. You can find an overview of these job portals on the Research in Germany website.

2. Financing and funding:

To work as a researcher in Germany, you must prove that you are able to finance your life here. Many academic employees in Germany are paid according to collective bargaining agreements and can therefore easily finance their research stay, if they have a full-time job. You can also secure funding for your research stay through a research scholarship. This is especially worthwhile if you want to carry out a project in Germany for a certain period of time. Many institutions fund international researchers from all disciplines. You can find an overview on the Research in Germany website.

3. Visa: 

In the “Who needs a visa?” section you can find out whether you need an entry visa or a residence permit for your research stay in Germany. As a rule, a visa or residence permit is required if you are not from the EU, EEA or Switzerland. You can find out which requirements apply for the granting of a visa in the "Visa for Research" section.

4. Prospects for the family:

As a citizen of an EU country, your spouse and children have the same rights to freedom of movement as you do, and they can move here with you without a visa. If you are not from the EU but have a residence permit as a scientist or researcher, your spouse also has the right to a residence permit with which she or he can take up any job in Germany. Of course, you can also bring your children with you. You can find more information about school and childcare in the section "Family life in Germany".

Career opportunities for spouses: Many universities in Germany also support your partner in their job search. So-called Dual Career Services as well as the university’s Welcome Centres accompany you and your family on your way to Germany and support you in settling in. About forty universities are currently represented in the Dual Career Network Germany (DCND). If your employer of choice is not on this list, why not ask them directly about their family support services?

5. Language skills: 

As a scientist or researcher, you usually do not have to prove any skills regarding your proficiency in German since English is the default language in international research teams. Your spouse does not need to know German either. But, of course, the German language will help you in your exchanges with German colleagues, students or employees in companies and administration. Language skills also help you and your family to settle in and find a new home and friends in Germany. You can find useful tips concerning the German language in this portal.

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