Researchers have particularly easy access to the Danish labour market.
If you are a Nordic citizen
, you are free to reside, study and work in Denmark. If you are an EU/EEA citizen
or Swiss citizen seeking residence in Denmark based on the EU regulations on freedom of movement, you may be subject to special rules. More information about EU/EEA and Nordic citizens
If you already hold a Danish residence permit based on family reunification or asylum, or hold a residence permit on humanitarian grounds, you do not need a work permit in order to work in Denmark.
It is your own responsibility to obtain a work permit if you are required to. If you work illegally in Denmark, you risk deportation, and you and your employer risk fine or imprisonment.
There must be particular reasons why the research should be carried out by you. Normally, research work is considered to be so closely linked to the individual researcher that the general employment situation in Denmark is not decisive for whether or not you can be granted a residence and work permit.
You must have a written job contract or job offer which specifies salary and employment conditions. Salary and employment conditions must correspond to Danish standards.
Researchers on short-term stays may be exempt from the regulations
If you have been invited as a researcher, scientist or lecturer to teach or give lectures, you may do so without a residence and work permit, provided your stay does not exceed three consecutive months, calculated from the day of arrival in Denmark.
If you are a citizen of a country with a visa requirement to enter Denmark, you must have obtained a visa valid for the entire stay before entering Denmark in accordance with the general conditions for the granting of a visa. If you are exempt from the visa requirement, you also need to observe the general visa conditions.
If your stay in Denmark is expected to exceed three months, you must have a residence and work permit covering the entire period, including the first three months. You must have obtained the permit prior to arriving in Denmark.
If you have a Master's degree, you can be granted a residence and work permit if you need to conduct research as part of your further education or career development and need to do so at a Danish research institute or company which makes facilities available, but does not hire you. As you will not be receiving pay from the Danish organisation, you must be able to support yourself with your own means or continue to receive pay from your research institute or employer in your country of origin while in Denmark. You must have means or income of no less than DKK 7,000 per month.
You can be granted a residence and work permit for the duration of your contract, but for a maximum of four years at a time.
If your job contract expires or you lose your job, and you find a new job, you must apply for a new residence and work permit. The same applies generally if you change jobs.
If you are a research trainee, you can be granted a residence and work permit for up to three years. Your permit cannot be extended beyond three years.
Your residence permit can only be granted or extended up to three months before your passport expires. This means that if your passport expires in 12 months, you can only be granted a permit for nine months, or your permit can only be extended by nine months.
If you have been granted a residence and work permit as a researcher or research trainee, then your spouse, registered partner or cohabiting partner, as well as any children under the age of 18 who are living at home with you, are also eligible for residence permits. However, your family members must be able to support themselves and you must live together in Denmark at the same address. Your spouse, registered partner or cohabiting partner is allowed to work full-time for the entire period his or her permit is valid.
How to apply
Read more about how to apply for a residence and work permit.