Visiting Research Program

Description & Selection

The Institute for Global Law and Policy accommodates a small number of Visiting Researchers and Visiting Scholars each academic year, funded by outside resources. Visiting Researchers and Scholars apply to do research at the Law School for three months to one year. In making selections, the Committee at the Institute considers the applicant’s background, field of interest, scholarly achievements, availability of Harvard Law School faculty for consultation in the proposed research area, and English language proficiency. Applicants should have completed their basic legal studies with high academic standing.

Applicants at a relatively senior stage of their professional career may be designated Visiting Scholars. This designation is made on the basis of the nature of the applicant’s proposal, the expected duration of their research and prior academic experience. Visiting Scholar applicants are also required to be affiliated with a university, research institute or governmental program in their home country.

Facilities

Visiting Researchers/Scholars have access to the Law School’s Libraries as well as other libraries at the University. With the permission of the teaching faculty member, Visiting Researches/Scholars may audit Law School courses on a non-credit basis. There is no additional tuition charge for auditing courses. Visiting Researchers/Scholars do not have faculty status.

Subject to availability, Visiting Researchers/Scholars may have use of an open study carrel in the Law School’s Langdell Library. Carrels are generally available at the beginning of the academic year. Visiting Researchers/Scholars arriving mid-year may find it more difficult to obtain a carrel.

In limited cases Visiting Scholars may be provided with desk space in a shared office. Telephones are not provided although one may be installed the Scholar’s expense. Secretarial services are not provided. Visiting Researchers and not eligible for office space.

Application

Visiting Researcher Application Form
Applicants are responsible for assembling and submitting all required documents in one package by the appropriate deadline, April 15. The application must include:

  • A cover letter indicating proposed length of stay, source/s and amount of funds available to cover expenses (financial aid is not available for Visiting Researchers/Scholars), and a summary of research plans.
  • A resume or CV that clearly shows degrees received and current position, as well as your current academic affiliation
  • Completed application form
  • A 2-3 page research proposal.
  • Official transcripts, and/or grading sheets (Faculty members at other universities who are applying to the IGLP need not include these)
  • Two letters of recommendation, including a letter of support from your doctoral or other academic supervisor, if appropriate. (Faculty members who are applying to the IGLP need not include these)
  • Application fee (check payable to The IGLP for U.S. $75.00)

Applicants whose primary language is not English must also request of the TOEFL Testing Center (Harvard reporting code is #3457) and official report of their TOEFL score to be sent directly to the Institute for Global Law and Policy. English language proficiency is essential for a Visiting Researcher or Scholar to insure the most beneficial and efficient use of time at Harvard Law School. The IGLP requires a score of 600 or better on the TOEFL exam for all international degree candidates whose primary language is not English, or who have not had a minimum of two years of instruction in English at the university level. The IGLP reserves the right to require a Visting Researcher/Scholar applicants to submit evidence of comparable English language proficiency.

Please note that the $75 application fee is non-refundable. Applicants experiencing extreme financial difficulties may request a waiver of the fee. To request a waiver, a letter stating financial need must be submitted along with official documentation revealing personal income. All requests should be addressed to the Institute for Global Law and Policy.

If the application fee will be paid by a sponsoring organization (IIE, government sponsorship, etc.), a notation should be included with the application. Time allowance for disbursement of the fee from sponsoring organizations will be considered in processing the applications.

Applicants from Spain

Download the IGLP Application HERE.

All applicants from the country of Spain please assemble and submit all the following required documents:

  • A cover letter indicating proposed length of stay, source/s and amount of funds available to cover expenses (financial aid is not available for Visiting Researchers/Scholars), and a summary of research plans.
  • Completed application form
  • A 2-3 page research proposal.
  • Official transcripts, and/or grading sheets (Faculty members at other universities who are applying to the IGLP need not include these)
  • Two letters of recommendation (sealed and signed across the back of the envelope)
  • A letter of support from Professor Prof. José Manuel Martínez Sierra, Director of the Real Colegio Complutense. Email rcc@harvard.edu.
  • A letter of support from their doctoral or other academic supervisor. (Faculty members at other universities need not include these)
  • A resume or CV that clearly shows degrees received and current position, as well as your current academic affiliation

Admission Process

Consideration for admission to the Visiting Researcher/Scholar Program occurs once a year. The deadline for applications is April 15 for applicants wishing to commence research for the Fall and Spring semesters. Application decisions will be rendered by May 10.

Tuition & Expenses

Visiting Researchers at the IGLP pay two fees:

  • A $220 monthly HLS Program fee. This fee must be paid for every month of your appointment. In some cases, the Visiting Researcher can be reimbursed for this fee from the funding source for the VR’s study (grants, etc..). The VR must ensure that this fee is paid before a Visa can be processed.
  • A $2,000 flat fee as a VR/VS to the IGLP. This amount will not be pro-rated for periods of less than one year. In the past, many VR’s have been able to recover this fee from their funding institutions. In any event, all VR’s not sponsored by the Real Colegio Complutense are responsible for payment of this fee.

Living Expenses

A single person can expect to incur living expenses of at least $15,000 for a 10-month period, exclusive of the residence fee described above. A married couple can expect living expenses of at least $22,000 for a 10-month period, exclusive of the residence fee.

Housing

Visiting Researchers and Scholars are not eligible for University owned housing. Because of the large student population in Cambridge and limited amount of housing, it can be challenging to locate housing after the school year begins. The best time to look for housing is in mid-August. Most Visiting Researchers and Scholars who have families come to Cambridge in advance of their families to look for housing. You can visit the International Housing Office’s web page for more information and assistance.

Landlords often require that a 10- or 12-month lease be signed by the tenant, thus making it difficult to rent a house or apartment for less than 10 to 12 months. Visiting Researchers/Scholars may use the University Housing office which maintains lists of privately owned housing available for rent in the Cambridge area. This list may be consulted at the Housing Office after a visitor’s arrival in Cambridge.

Health Insurance

Visiting Researchers/Scholars are eligible for the Harvard University health plan. The Health plan for a single person is approximately $1,200. The plan for a visitor and family is in excess of $2,000.

English Language Instruction

Harvard University offers English language courses. A twelve-week course costs $400. This is in addition to the law school residence fee mentioned above. For more information you can write the English as a Second Language Program, Harvard Summer School, 20 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138.