I. Visiting Scholars

(1) Description

This appointment is made to enable an individual, ordinarily a ladder faculty member on paid leave from another institution, to carry out his/her/their own work in association with a Harvard faculty member or members. The expectation is that regular interaction will occur between the visiting scholar and his/her/their Harvard faculty sponsor.

The appointment (which, if paid, is contingent on funding and space) is made for a minimum of three months and is not to exceed 12 months. Reappointment may be possible. Individuals may ordinarily hold this appointment for no more than two consecutive years. An annual reappointment letter must be submitted for reappointment to this rank. The reappointment letter should include the dates of the reappointment, new salary and/or pay source information, and should outline any changes to the appointment since the original appointment offer letter. Part-time appointments or non-consecutive appointments for a fraction of a year will ordinarily count as a one-year appointment in determining eligibility for renewal. Individuals are eligible for reappointment after a lapse of two years. Exceptions to these restrictions require the prior written approval of the Office for Faculty Affairs. Visiting scholars may not be designated as “principal investigator” or “project director.”

Note: Members of the FAS and University community are expected to familiarize themselves with, and conform to, Harvard policies on teaching, research, and service, as appropriate to their position. Please see Chapter 2, “FAS and University Policies,” for more information.

For unpaid visiting scholars:

In keeping with Harvard University’s Intellectual Property policies (https://vpr.harvard.edu/pages/intellectual-property-policy) and other research policies, visitors (individuals for whom Harvard is not their primary affiliation) must submit an electronic PDF of a signed hard copy of one of three Harvard University Visitor Participation Agreements (https://vpr.harvard.edu/visitor-participation-agreements) by the start of their appointment. Note: Visitors from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) are not required to submit a VPA form, with the exception of M.I.T. undergraduates, who must submit a VPA form.

If working in one of Harvard’s laboratories, and if not receiving any form of payment from Harvard, visitors should also submit an electronic PDF of a signed hard copy of the Acknowledgement of Risk and Release for Non-Harvard Personnel Using Harvard Research and Instructional Laboratory Facilities form by the start of their appointment.

For paid (salaried) visiting scholars:

In keeping with Harvard University’s Intellectual Property policies (https://vpr.harvard.edu/pages/intellectual-property-policy) and other research policies, faculty and researchers are expected to sign electronically the Harvard University Participation Agreement by the start of their appointment.

For paid (stipendiary) visiting scholars:

In keeping with Harvard University’s Intellectual Property policies (https://vpr.harvard.edu/pages/intellectual-property-policy) and other research policies, visitors (individuals for whom Harvard is not their primary affiliation) must submit an electronic PDF of a signed hard copy of one of three Harvard University Visitor Participation Agreements (https://vpr.harvard.edu/visitor-participation-agreements) by the start of their appointment. Note: Visitors from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) are not required to submit a VPA form, with the exception of M.I.T. undergraduates, who must submit a VPA form.

(2) Salary

The appointment may be paid or unpaid.

If paid, the appointment can be either stipendiary or salaried. If stipendiary, the position is non-benefits-eligible (for further guidance on stipendees, please see the “Research Appointments Matrix,” available on the “Appointment and Promotion” page of the FAS website for faculty and researchers). If salaried, the minimum base salary is $50,000, and the position is benefits- eligible. The salaried fellow position (“Visiting Scholar, job code 069603”) requires approval by the appropriate assistant dean. Sponsored funds may be used to cover salary, provided that a) the appointment is consistent with the terms of the grant, and b) the salary matches the effort of the project on which the Visiting Scholar will be working.

Unpaid Visiting Scholars may be “unpaid” in one of only two ways: self-funded or funded by a source external to Harvard. If unpaid in either way, please see 4a) in “Documentation Requirements” below.”

(3) Appointment/Search Procedures

No search is required, but every prospective visiting scholar must have a Harvard faculty sponsor.

(4) Documentation Requirements

The department must submit the following to the Appointments Office in the Office for Faculty Affairs via Aurora:

a. 1 electronic PDF copy of a signed cover letter to the Appointments Office from the faculty sponsor, on department letterhead, indicating the reason for the appointment, the type of work in which the visitor will be engaged, the visitor’s home institution and title (specifying that it is a tenure-track or tenured appointment and providing the U.S. equivalent of the title, if applicable), any arrangements for space, I.T., and other resources, and the faculty sponsor’s commitment to meet regularly with the visiting scholar. This statement must also confirm the salary, or, if the position is entirely funded by a source external to Harvard, it must confirm that the candidate has outside funding; or, if the position is entirely self-funded, the document noted in 4f. below must also be submitted.

b. 1 electronic PDF copy of a visiting scholar offer letter from the department chair or center director, on department letterhead, outlining the terms of the appointment and confirming that the chair/director supports the appointment and, if applicable, that appropriate physical space will be provided. Please cc Roanne Bosch (roannebosch@fas.harvard.edu), the Communications and Outreach Coordinator in FAS Research Administration Services.  Roanne will assign the visiting scholar any required trainings applicable to FAS/SEAS faculty and Principal Investigators named on sponsored projects. The letter should also ask the individual to sign the appropriate Visitor Participation Agreement. Note: Visitors from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) are not required to submit a VPA form, with the exception of M.I.T. undergraduates, who must submit a VPA form. If the visiting scholar is not receiving any form of payment from Harvard, and is working in one of Harvard’s laboratories, the visiting scholar should also be asked to sign the Acknowledgement of Risk and Release for Non-Harvard Personnel Using Harvard Research and Instructional Laboratory Facilities form.

c. 1 electronic PDF copy of the visitor’s curriculum vitae.

d. 1 electronic PDF of a signed hard copy of one of the Visitor Participation Agreements.

e. 1 electronic PDF of a signed hard copy of the Acknowledgement of Risk and Release for Non-Harvard Personnel Using Harvard Research and Instructional Laboratory Facilities form.

f. If the candidate is entirely self-funded: 1 electronic PDF copy of a letter outlining the desire for the affiliation without an expectation of compensation, signed by the candidate.

Departments should retain documents according to practices recommended by Harvard Archives at https://grs.harvard.edu/ (please log in).