Stage 1 - endorsement application
You may be eligible for this route if you are a researcher or specialist whose name or job title is specified in a successful grant application from an endorsed funder approved by UKRI.
To be eligible, you must either:
direct independently, or under the supervision of a Principle Investigator, a unique research or innovation project and meet all the following requirements:
- have a PhD qualification or equivalent research experience (including industrial or clinical research); and
- actively participate in a relevant field in a University, research institute or industry; and
- have your name or post listed on the grant or award as the Principle or Co-investigator, Researcher Co-investigator, Post-doctoral researcher or Research Assistant, or an equivalent position acceptable to UKRI; or
make critical contributions to research by providing core technical or domain excellence or in developing new technologies and methodologies and meet both the following requirements:
- have a UK bachelor’s degree or equivalent overseas research degree or equivalent research experience (including industrial or clinical research); and
- have research experience within a University, Research Institute or Industry.
Furthermore, you must:
show that there is at least 1 year remaining on your employment contract or hosting agreement and that you will be hosted or employed by a UKRI-approved UK research organisation and will provide critical contributions to work supported by a substantial research grant or award from an endorsed funder by:
providing written confirmation of the award from the endorsed funder which shows the award is worth at least £30,000 and covers a minimum of 2 years; and
confirming that the award is either;
- funded by a one-off grant or award that has been won in open competition; or
- attributed to a large institutional, renewable award that is subject to periodic peer review; and
provide a declaration from the Director of Human Resources at the UKRI-approved research organisation, which confirms all the following:
- you are essential to the execution of the grant or award; and
- at least 50% of your time will be spent working on the grant or award by the endorsed funder (Principal investigators and co-investigators can aggregate time spent on multiple eligible awards or grants to demonstrate this requirement); and
- you have accepted the job offer or hosting agreement; and
- the job title and department in which you will be based; and
- details of the robust recruitment process where you were not named on the grant application.
In order for the Staff Immigration Team to provide a statement of guarantee from the Director of Human Resources at the University, they will need confirmation from your Principal Investigator / Co-investigator in writing that confirms how the above criteria has been met. If this criteria has been met, the Staff Immigration Team will raise a letter for you which you can use to apply for your endorsement. This letter will be emailed to you. You will also need to obtain the Grant Award Letter (i.e. the letterhead from the funder and the details of the award relating to you as an applicant and your position) from Research Innovation Services (RIS) and/or your Principal Investigator / Co-investigator.
As part of the online endorsement application, you will be asked to enter all your personal details. Once you complete those sections, you will be asked firstly, 'if you are applying under exceptional talent or exceptional promise criteria' in which case you will need to select 'neither' as you will be applying under the UKRI endorsed funder route and secondly, 'your field of talent', in which case you will need to state your research field and UKRI. You will then be asked 'if you are applying for fast-track consideration' in which case you will need to select 'yes' to this question. You will then need to upload your Grant Award Letter along with your statement of guarantee letter to complete your application. No other documents are required at this stage.
You should receive notification that your endorsement has been successful via email within approximately 1 week.
Once you receive your endorsement confirmation, you can then apply for your visa. You must apply for your visa within 3 months of receiving your endorsement letter.
Stage 2 - apply for entry clearance or permission
You must apply online for a Global Talent Visa. How you apply depends on whether you are:
- outside the UK and are coming to the UK
- inside the UK and extending your current visa
- inside the UK and switching from a different visa
After you apply
Please refer to our guidance on the Global Talent Visa for further details.