Visiting Scholars


The visiting scholars program has re-opened amidst COVID-19 restrictions, which will create longer application review, processing, issuing of any relevant documents, and onboarding. All affiliations will be virtual until further notice as the campus is closed. For visiting scholar applicants who require a J-1 visa, please note that the Sigur Center can still facilitate your visa but the Center’s research suite is closed, so please account for virtual access to resources even if you are physically in the Washington, DC area. Non-resident scholar applicants continue with minimal disruptions as this status is best suited for those already in the area, remote for their entire affiliation, or do not require a J-1 visa. 

Details about COVID-19 policies can be found on the dedicated GW and DC pages as research services continue to adapt to restrictions to ensure a quality, scholastic, and safe environment. 

If you are interested in being considered for a resident or non-resident Visiting Scholar affiliation, please submit a complete application by email; applications are accepted on a rolling basis to meet demand. Only complete application packages will be considered. Please direct general inquiries to or submit complete applications to Dr. Miriam Grinberg, Manager of Research Programs, at


Program Overview

Each year the Sigur Center for Asian Studies hosts Visiting Scholars from around the world, who are selected on a highly competitive basis to conduct research related to Asia.

The Sigur Center normally provides in-person, shared use of a dedicated research suite for scholars; access to a research network “eduroam,” GW VPN, and computer; borrowing privileges from the Washington Research Library Consortium and access to GW’s libraries; limited telephone, fax, printing, and photocopying privileges; uniquely GW research support through the National Security Archives and the Global Resources Center; an opportunity to interact with other scholars focusing on Asia; and much more. The Sigur Center’s advantageous location in downtown Washington, DC also allows Visiting Scholars the added benefit of ready access to many think tanks, U.S. and foreign government offices, universities in the metropolitan area, and other excellent resources to facilitate interviews and research with primary sources.

Visiting Scholars are expected to play an active role in the intellectual life of the Sigur Center and the Elliott School for International Affairs. As such, Visiting Scholars at the Sigur Center should anticipate participating in activities such as – but not limited to – attending Sigur Center events and providing guest lectures in GW courses related to their research topic. Visiting and Non-Resident Scholars must also present their research in an oral presentation or written report to the Sigur Center by the end of their term as their required intellectual contribution.

Visiting Scholars are usually doctoral candidates, faculty members at universities, analysts at research institutions, or mid-career government officials. The Sigur Center also hosts a number of scholars whose visas and funding are sponsored by external organizations, such as the U.S. Department of State’s Fulbright Program and the Chinese Scholarship Council fellowship, which is similar to the U.S. National Science Foundation, but are hosted at the George Washington University. Our current scholars and recent alumni represent a wide range of disciplines and hail from Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Pakistan, Poland, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, Taiwan, United Kingdom, United States of America, Vietnam, and more.

Please be assured that the Sigur Center, Elliott School, GW, and DC are taking necessary and pre-emptive public health measures to continue research support, resource access, and socially distanced in-person interaction. The most recent policies and guidelines can be accessed on the dedicated GW and DC pages for COVID-19 response. Examples include Gelman Library’s efforts to digitize requested materials or provide free FedEx ground US shipping for physical items; remote work IT support and software; as well as virtual events and interviews.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

GW is committed to digital accessibility. If you experience a barrier that affects your ability to access content on this page, let us know via the Accessibility Feedback Form.