IES Visiting Researcher Application

How to Apply

NOTE: Applications for the IES Visiting Researchers Program must be submitted at least 6 months in advance of the planned stay.

J-1 visa processing requires a minimum of 3-6 months. Prospective scholars should NOT initiate a visa application independently, and should NOT make any travel arrangements until after the Visiting Researcher appointment and visa are officially approved and issued.

Please make sure you have read thoroughly all program requirements prior to applying.


NOTE: Current Masters and PhD students who participate in exchange agreements with our Student Exchange Partners cannot apply directly to IES, but must apply through the international office at their home institution. Candidates must be selected and nominated by the student's home university at least 6 months prior to the start of their planned stay at Berkeley.

All other applicants for IES Visiting Scholar and Visiting Student Researcher programs must submit the following materials for review:

  • Cover letter, including a 100-word abstract of your proposed research project and the requested period of residence (start and end date) (max. 2 pages)

  • Curriculum vitae (max. 3 pages)

  • Research Statement describing the project to be carried out while in residence at IES (max. 3 pages)

  • Title and abstract of planned public lecture (max. 1 page; for Visiting Scholars only) 

  • Letter of nomination from a UC Berkeley faculty member who agrees to supervise your research

All materials should be written in English.

Please submit all materials as a single PDF addressed to IES Director Jeroen Dewulf, at

A tentative acceptance letter can be provided in advance for prospective visitors who are applying for fellowships that require a statement of affiliation with an American institution (e.g. Fulbright).


Completed applications are reviewed by the IES Steering Committee. Applicants will be notified of the Institute’s decision in writing within a reasonable period of time.

After receiving preliminary approval from the IES Director, applicants will be contacted to submit additional documentation and fees including:

  • (for international scholars only) DS-2019 Processing Fee ($600, non-refundable): an international money order, wire transfer, or check drawn on a U.S. bank in US dollars, made payable to "UC Regents", to be paid before arrival in Berkeley.

  • IES Administrative Fee (if applicable), paid to IES prior to arrival via wire transfer or check made payable to "UC Regents".

  • University Services Fee, payable online via credit card before arrival in Berkeley.

  • Proof of funding, issued within the past six months. Please consult the Berkeley International Office guidelines for acceptable funding documentation.

  • Proof of English language proficiency (e.g. TOEFL, IELTS, signed documentation from an academic institution or English language school). See here for more information. 


When all fees have been paid, and IES and the International Office have completed processing your file, you will receive a DS-2019 form. Take this form with you to the U.S. Embassy to receive your J-1 visa for yourself (plus a J-2 visa for each dependent). Do not make any travel plans until you have your J-1 visa in hand.


Once your travel arrangements are made, you should inform IES of your arrival date.

***You may arrive up to 30 days before the start date on your Form DS-2019. If arriving more than 9 days later than initially planned, you may need an amended J-1 Form DS-2019 to avoid problems at the U.S. port-of-entry. Please email if you anticipate arriving more than 9 days after the start date on your Form DS-2019.***

Upon arrival, you will be required to attend an onboarding session to be officially processed as a visiting researcher on campus. After you have completed onboarding, your appointment information will be entered into the University database for the purpose of securing a University ID number.

International scholars are required to attend the Berkeley International Office Scholar Information Meeting. All visiting researchers are also encouraged to attend the VSPA New Visiting Scholar and Postdoc Orientation.


Please contact IES Program Manager Dr. Julia Nelsen at