Visiting Researcher Program

The Program

Scholars and researchers from around the world are invited to conduct research under the guidance of or in collaboration with Latin American Studies faculty. Most visiting researchers are junior or senior members of faculties in countries outside the United States; some are involved in government service or doctoral or postdoctoral studies. Visiting researchers benefit from an accommodating place to pursue their work and from an ability to exchange ideas with our faculty, other researchers, and the significant number of graduate and undergraduate students from around the world who are enrolled full and part time in courses at BU.

Visiting researchers enjoy full access to Boston University libraries to pursue their research agendas. Space permitting, researchers are invited to observe classes and attend faculty workshops and other academic events. At this time, we are not able to provide any discrete facilities, such as office or study carrel space, or to assist with housing. Unless their visits coincide with the academic year, securing reasonably affordable short-term housing in the Boston area may be difficult.

Application Process and Selection Criteria

The Latin American Studies Program receives a large number of inquiries about visiting researcher opportunities, but invites only a limited number of scholars to be in residence at any given time. In reviewing the inquiries, we take into account each prospective visitor’s educational and experiential background, scholarly and professional achievements, area of academic interest, specific research proposal, institutional affiliations and English language skills, as well as the availability and interest of a Latin American Studies faculty member to supervise or collaborate in the proposed research project or otherwise mentor the prospective visitor.

Prospective visitors are encouraged to initiate contacts with appropriate faculty members to try to arrange for a suitable relationship. The relationship between a visiting scholar and a faculty mentor can range from close collaboration to casual oversight. It is important that the nature and scope of the relationship, as well as the specifics of the prospective visitor’s research project, be worked out by the two before we take final action on the application.

Visits range from a few weeks to a full year and may start at any time.

Interested prospective visitors should send the following materials to the Assistant Director of the Latin American Studies Program at the email address indicated below:

  • A résumé or curriculum vitae
  • A description of the proposed research, including a statement explaining why the Latin American Studies Program at Boston University is an appropriate setting for the work
  • The proposed length and dates of the visit
  • Visiting Scholar Acknowledgement
  • Intellectual Property Agreement
  • The name of the faculty member(s) whom the prospective visitor proposes to serve as his or her mentor. (A prospective visitor who has received the agreement of a faculty member to serve as mentor should provide a letter from the faculty member indicating his or her willingness to do so.)
  • A letter of recommendation from an academic colleague or supervisor
  • If the prospective visitor is interested in observing a particular course or courses, a statement indicating the course(s) and the reasons for the interest
  • Prospective visitors whose native language is not English should describe their experience and training in English and the degree of their proficiency with the English language. English proficiency is a significant factor in granting invitations. TOEFL and academic records may also be requested.

Although we welcome visiting researcher applications at any time, individuals who wish to visit in the fall term, which begins at the end of August, are encouraged to start the application process early enough so that their applications can be completed prior to March 1. In all cases, applications should be completed no later than six months prior to the proposed visit.

All inquiries, applications, and supporting materials should be addressed by email to Elizabeth Amrien.

Fees and Visas

Visiting researchers working with faculty in the Pardee School of Global Studies and/or the College of Arts & Sciences are not assessed fees. If a scholar has a faculty mentor in another school or college, or wishes to take courses in another school or college, fees will be assessed by the school or college wherein the mentor resides or wherein courses are taken.

Most visitors are supported by funding sources in their home countries or through sabbatical leave salaries from their home institutions. No financial aid, stipends, or housing are available for visiting researchers. Given the general cost of living in the Boston area, prospective visitors should carefully plan their short-term housing and other living expenses. Some general information about Boston’s various neighborhoods can be found at Boston University’s Get to Know Your Neighborhood guide.

Individuals whom we invite to visit who are not US citizens or residents will be provided with information about visas and other important details. They will also be asked to supply financial documentation to support their visa applications. Such documents must be originals, in English, which certify financial ability in terms of US dollars. In most cases, visiting researchers from outside the US will fall under the J1 Scholar classification.

For more information pertaining to visas, including J1 financial requirements, please visit the website of our International Students & Scholars Office.

Current Researchers

For a list of current researchers, please visit this page.