The Duke Center for International Development (DCID) welcomes visiting research scholars to contribute to our research community and collaborate with our faculty on specific projects.

For this highly selective program, preference is given to requests from universities and other research and public policy-oriented organizations with which DCID has collaborative institutional relationships.

Visiting research scholars may visit DCID for up to one year, during which they have full access to Duke University libraries and computing resources in the Sanford and Rubenstein Hall Buildings.

The minimum monthly living expenses required by Duke University for visa issuance purposes for an individual is $2,361.45 per month.

Who should apply

  • Candidates with a PhD or significant work experience (e.g. 15+ years) who are interested in performing independent research related to their field of expertise in collaboration with a faculty advisor.
  • Candidates with some work experience in the field of development or who are pursuing a PhD and wish join DCID to further their knowledge through an externally funded independent research project.


  • The candidate must have a research proposal of interest to one or more of the DCID faculty members and a faculty member must be available to advise the scholar. 

  • The candidate must have a strong command of the English language. 

  • The candidate must be highly recommended by professional colleagues. 

  • The candidate must have appropriate institutional sponsorship/financial support from their sponsoring organization. 

  • Preferably, an institutional relationship exists between the candidate’s employer/university and DCID.

  • Letter indicating your:
    • Reasons for interest in DCID
    • General agreement with the considerations and criteria outlined above 
    • Proposed dates of visit
  • Source of funding to cover the administrative fee and the minimum monthly living expenses required by Duke University for visa issuance purposes
  • Research proposal 
  • CV or resume, including your photo 
  • Letter of support regarding your scholarship/policy work from two professional supervisors or colleagues 
  • A copy of your top two publications

Applicants will upload these documents in the application portal. The application is not considered complete until we receive all supporting materials.

Proof of English language proficiency, if coming from a non-English speaking country.

  • You may submit TOEFL, IELTS, Duolingo or PTE scores (not older than two years):
    • A minimum of 90 must be scored on the TOEFL internet-based test. 
    • A minimum overall band score of seven (7.0) must be scored on the IELTS. 
    • A minimum of 115 is required for the Duolingo exam. 
    • A minimum of 64 is required for the PTE test.

When to apply

DCID reviews visiting research scholar applications twice a year. To join DCID for the fall (August), apply and provide all additional material no later than March 15. To join DCID for the spring (January), apply and provide all additional material no later than October 15.  

Apply now


Interested candidates should contact with questions about DCID’s visiting research scholar program.

Recent Visiting Research Scholars