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UK welcomes international researchers as the Global Talent Visa goes live

20/02/2020

UK welcomes international researchers as the Global Talent Visa goes live

From today, research talent from across the world will be able to apply for the UK’s new Global Talent Visa.  

The changes provide researchers and critical support staff with a new pathway to get the country’s most flexible visa. UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will play a critical role in the new regime as it becomes an endorsing body for the first time.

Linda Holliday, UKRI Deputy Director for Global Mobility and Inclusion, said“We’ve been delighted how supportive the government has been of this agenda. The UK really is open to international talent.

“Many more researchers will find that they are eligible to apply for the visa through this new pathway. In this initial phase of reforms, anyone named on a successful, peer-reviewed grant awarded by a recognised funder will benefit. So this is good news not only for principal investigators and co-investigators, but also postdoctoral researchers, research assistants, technologists and methodologists as well.

“As well as benefitting from a fast-track process, research staff who hold this visa are free to travel internationally, for instance for field work or to collaborate; they can have the freedom to work with businesses or change institution, and they can apply to bring family to the UK.”

The introduction of the new pathway comes as the academies double the number of fellowship schemes that are eligible for the visa’s fellowship pathway. Pathways for senior appointments at higher education institutes and other bodies, and a standard endorsement pathway, remain available. The previous cap on numbers of visas that can be issued each year has also been removed.

The changes support the UK government’s ambition to invest 2.4% of the nation’s GDP into research and development by 2027. To reach that goal the UK will need to increase the number of research jobs across all sectors of the economy. While many of these roles will be filled by people either retained or trained in the UK, migration plays an important part in bringing skills and expertise to the UK and enriching our research workforce.

Applicants are able to apply for the new visa, and can find full guidance and requirements, on www.gov.uk/global-talent from today. UKRI is also publishing updated information.

The changes were first announced by the Prime Minister in January.


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