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How Do I Submit a Secondment?

(Updated: 18.07.2023)


If you need more than 6 weeks for your fieldwork abroad, you must apply for a (research) secondment. Less than 6 weeks is a regular business trip.

Be fully aware that the processing of the secondment will take at least 8 weeks. No exceptions can be made, it is up to you to plan accordingly.

For a research secondment, you will need the following documents:

1.An application form for a “business trip” (“Antrag auf Dienstreise”)

This form is actually used for short business trips (Dienstreise). There is no actual form for secondments: the administration uses the one for short trips as a start. The form is to be found on the faculty PolSoz website:
 https://www.fu-berlin.de/en/sites/abt-1/formulare/index.html .
Among “Application Forms Business Travel” you will find “Application for Approval of Business Travel”. This is the one you have to fill in.
-Tick the box “Business Trip” on the top left of page 1.
There is no problem if you don't know your exact travel dates yet. The application form essentially serves as a base to start the process.
Don’t forget to specify the financing information, and to sign (on the bottom left corner)! Your supervisor also has to sign the form (on the bottom right corner)
-Leave page 2 blank

 2. A detailed itinerary (when and where you will be staying). If you have already made some arrangements (for hotels or invitations), indicate this in the plan and give the name and address of your hosts. If not, please indicate in which region/city you will be staying or for what purpose and for how long.

3. A justification letter for this secondment. Here you must explain thoroughly why you need to stay longer than 6 weeks. (= in that case it would be considered as "a short trip"); why you go there (=e.g. field research). Sign it, don´t forget the date. And let your supervisor sign it too.

4. A copy of your travel health insurance. You can submit it immediately if you already have one. If not, because the processing time is so long, the insurance can often be submitted later. (Be careful of the providers in Germany! Many only offer cover for 56 days a year - so be especially careful to take out insurance for "longer stays")

 5. Also non-EU citizens can clasify for a  secondment. In some cases it can last longer because you will have to obtain a visa for research purposes first. But start the application now, the processing of an application takes a minimum of 8-9 weeks. In the meantime, prepare all documents for your visa application (if required!)

Once you have prepared all that, the person in charge (Secretary II/Third Party Funding Officer) will send your application to the administration of the department first, then it will go the central administration.

You will eventually be contacted by HR to finalise your application and sign your secondment contract. You will have to attend an interview in Berlin with a member of HR, and finally sign your contract. 


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