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The 2018 scheme will open soon.

Components of the Award

The Visiting Professor Scheme provides individual awards of up to USD $2500 and requires some financial commitment from the candidate's home institute (or the candidate themselves) and from the proposed host:

  1. SCAR: up to $2000 to cover international return flights (Economy class) and $500 towards living expenses for the visiting period;
  2. Home Institute (or candidate, if retired): all expenses incurred in the home country (domestic travel, visa costs, etc.);
  3. Host Institute: office space and waiving of any bench/visitor fees that they might normally charge.

The number of awards given by SCAR will depend on the quality of the applications and the total budget available. The amount of each individual award will take into account local factors.

SCAR Visiting Professor awards should be confirmed by the Executive Committee in late July and the results will be announced in early August. Visiting Professorships run for one year so must be completed by the August of the following year.


The scheme is for mid- to late-career stage scientists and academics (more than five years after completing their PhD) whose research contributes to SCAR's objectives, as embodied in the Science Groups and Scientific Research Programmes. The host institute must be in or operated by one of the SCAR Member countries and must be a country different from that of (i) the candidate's current position and (ii) the candidate's origin (although the latter may be waived at the discretion of the Selection Committee). Visiting Professorships are awarded purely by competitive selection, the criteria for which are given in the Evaluation section below.

In order to apply, scientists and academics are required to first contact and liaise with the appropriate host, to secure the support of an organisation or institute undertaking Antarctic research that would benefit from the visit.

Both the home and host institutes must be willing to take part in the SCAR Visiting Professor Scheme. The scientist or academic must have full support from their home institute and this will be indicated in the Home Institute Agreement, acknowledging the home institute support. In the case of retired professors who remain active in Antarctic research, they themselves will bear the cost of domestic travel and visa procurement in their home country, and will indicate this in the Home Institute Agreement. The contact at the host institute will acknowledge their support of the visiting professor in the Host Institute Agreement.

Elements of the Application

The complete application package consists of:

  1. document Home Institute Agreement - to be completed by the home institute contact (the applicant's line manager or any other appropriate contact), or the applicant, if retired (by completing and signing their own form, retired professors acknowledge that they will bear all expenses incurred in their own country). The home institute contact may also choose to write a letter of support, which should be combined with the home institute form in a single document. The complete Home Institute Agreement document (preferably in PDF format) must be uploaded by the applicant during the online application process.
  2. document Host Institute Agreement - to be completed by the host institute contact, who will also write a letter of support, which should be combined with the host institute form in a single document. The complete Host Institute Agreement document (preferably in PDF format) must be uploaded by the applicant during the online application process.
  3. Online Application Form - to be completed by the applicant. Note: the applicant must have both agreements ready to upload before starting the application process, and optionally a portrait image to be used when announcing the successful applicants.

It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that they have completed the online application process, including uploading both agreements, by the deadline. Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.

Information about the Online Application

When preparing their applications candidates are encouraged to focus on the core purpose of the Visiting Professor Scheme, which is to build capacity in countries with smaller or less-developed Antarctic research programmes. This will be the primary aspect of the application to be evaluated and candidates should consider whether their proposed visit fits with these criteria.

During the application process, candidates will need to provide some background information on their career and details of their work history, the institute(s) where they have been employed and a brief summary of their research (Section 3 in the application).  They will also be required to provide a short description of their proposed activities at the host institute, indicating the expected outcomes, the relevance to SCAR, the timeframe of the visit, any existing links that have already been established with the host, and showing what they and the host institute are expected to gain from the work (Section 6 in the application). To prevent the loss of any information, candidates may choose to prepare their responses before beginning the online form. The questions requiring some preparation are given below.

Section 3: Applicant Work History and Background

  1. Brief Summary of Research: An outline of your current or most recent research (limited to 200 words).
  2. Biographical Summary: An overview of your biographical history relevant to your application (limited to 500 words).
  3. Current Institute Details: The name of your current institute, your date of joining and your position title; for retired applicants, the name of your previous institute, the dates you joined and retired, and your position and title while there.
  4. Previous Institutes: If you have worked in more than one institute, you will need to provide details of each institute, your position and a brief summary of your research (limited to 250 words).
  5. Honours and Awards: Details of any honours or awards you have received.
  6. Service and Outreach Activities: Information about your voluntary service and your outreach activities, especially those relevant to the application. Any specific capacity-building experience with countries with smaller or less-developed Antarctic research programmes should be highlighted (limited to 300 words).
  7. Collaborators: List people you work with, co-authors on papers, and especially any you are proposing to work with as a result of this application.

Section 6: Outline of Planned Activities at the Host Institute

  1. Rationale: (200 word limit)
    In this section please explain the opportunity that your proposal presents. What is the need that your proposal addresses? How will it fit with the purpose of the scheme, which is to develop capacity in a country with a smaller or less-developed Antarctic research programme? Why should it be done now and at this particular institute?
  2. Training and Mentoring Objectives and Plan: (400 word limit)
    What are your proposed activities at the host institute? How do these activities deliver on the opportunity presented in the Rationale section? Who will your activities be targeting and what is the range of career stages involved?
  3. Potential for follow up with SCAR activities: (200 word limit)
    What are the potential linkages to existing SCAR Groups and Programmes as a result of your proposal? How would follow up with these SCAR activities be enabled?
  4. Additional Outreach and Communications Plan: (200 word limit)
    What activities do you plan beyond the immediate group and host institute you are visiting? Do you plan to have public lectures, media contact, presentation back at your home institute, etc.?
  5. Feasibility: (100 word limit)
    What are the potential risks to being able to deliver the intended outcomes? How do you intend to deal with the risks?

pdf Guidance Notes for completing these sections are available for download.

Evaluation of Visiting Professor Applications

The review panel will comprise representatives from the SCAR Capacity Building, Education and Training (CBET) Committee, the SCAR Executive Committee and one or more of the Officers of the SCAR Science Groups or their Alternates. The review panel will evaluate all proposals on their potential to build capacity in countries with smaller or less-developed Antarctic research programmes. This evaluation will also take into consideration factors such as:

  • the research excellence the visit will provide;
  • how the visit 'fits' with SCAR's place in science and research, and with its research directions;
  • how far links have already been established with the proposed host institute.

Completion of Visiting Professor Scheme

Within one month of the completion of the Visiting Professorship, the Visiting Professor must provide a short report that will be published on the SCAR website. Reports should cover the activities carried out and the accomplishments achieved, as well as future plans.  Final distribution of funds may be delayed if the report is not submitted on time.

document Report Template

Documents and Forms

Applications for 2018 will open soon.