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Work permits – Postdoctoral researcher

Under certain conditions, scientific or postdoctoral researchers can work in Flanders. In these cases, their future employer needs to apply for a work permit for them.

Conditions for working in Flanders

Foreign nationals who come to work in Flanders must first receive permission to work. This obligation applies to everyone apart from a few well-defined categories of foreign workers.

A foreign postdoctoral researcher who does not belong to one of these well-defined categories and who therefore needs a work permit can work in Flanders if the conditions below are met.

  • The researcher receives an allowance for scientific research for a maximum of three years.
  • The researcher has, at the least, a level 8 qualification (Doctorate).
  • The researcher performs fundamental scientific research in a hosting university or recognised research institution:
    • in the framework of international mobility
    • to valorise scientific knowledge that the researcher acquired during their PhD.

Which work permit is required?

As an employer, you apply for permission for your future employee to work. The procedure and the documents that you need will differ depending on the duration of their appointment. Are you applying for permission for the first time? Or are you renewing a permit? This makes a difference too.