Research (collecting) permits

Research (collecting) permits overview

Namibia is an attractive destination for dipterists wishing to undertake fieldwork before or after ICD9 in their private capacity, especially in the north-east of the country during November. The post-Congress tours that are being organised are intended for those that wish to sight-see, not those wishing to sample biological specimens or conduct research. For those delegates who wish to arrange private or joint expeditions to sample Diptera in Namibia permits are required to do so, that must be applied for well in advance (see below text and application form).

As with most countries around the world, Namibia is concerned about the loss of biological diversity and information pertaining to that biodiversity not being repatriated to the country. It is illegal to sample biological specimens within the boundaries of Namibia without an appropriate permit to conduct research and to export biological specimens/material without an appropriate export permit.

It is the individual responsibility of all delegates wishing to collect biological specimens in Namibia to apply for a research permit.

It is important to note that attendance at ICD9 does not represent permission to conduct research or collection of biological specimens/material within the state boundaries of Namibia, including genetic material and soils and ICD Council and the local Organizing Committee takes no responsibility for the actions of delegates who do not apply in advance for the correct business visa, or follow the correct permitting procedures for the sampling and export of biological specimens and the subsequent adherence to permit conditions.

How to apply for a collecting (research) permit

To avoid delegates having to apply for separate research permits, ICD9 has now arranged a special permitting procedure for delegates wishing to conduct fieldwork (research) before or after ICD9.

All applications will be processed by our partnering organization (Gobabeb Research and Training Centre), who will register a single project entitled “Evolutionary history, diversity and zoogeography of Namibian flies (Diptera)” with the National Commission on Research, Science and Technology (NCRST) in Namibia. Eugéne Marais (Gobabeb) will be Principle Investigator, with the various projects to be conducted by delegates who apply listed as “co-workers” on the central project proposal.

The duration of the permit will be from 1 November to 31 December 2018. This permit will cover all Diptera studies throughout Namibia, but delegates MUST specify separately any parks they wish to work in at the time of the application and motivate for the need to work in protected areas. Please note that it will not be permitted to work outside designated tourist accommodation areas or hiking trails in some parks (e.g., Etosha National Park, Waterberg National Park, Palmwag Community Concession Area), due to the prevalence of dangerous wildlife and strict rhino security and conservation measures. There are many farms and natural areas outside the parks in those areas, but researchers must obtain permission from landowners before crossing into fenced land.

The usual permit conditions apply, including that all information (full georeferenced collection data per location, with taxa, specimen numbers and repositories of material), voucher specimens, publications, etc. should be made available to the relevant institution, i.e., National Museum of Namibia for specimens and/or Gobabeb Research and Training Centre (relevant information and publications).

Please note that this special permission ONLY pertains to Diptera and that no bycatch or other material may be collected if not specifically relevant to the researcher’s project. The ICD9 permit will NOT allow general colleting of any other plant or animal taxa. Please note that additional permits may be required for soils, host-plants, or genetic materials.

All applications for permits MUST be submitted by e-mail to for initial processing. Please use the subject line “[your surname]: permit application” for e-mail messages. These will then be assessed by Eugéne Marais (Gobabeb) before final submission of the combined project proposal in October.

The following documents MUST be submitted at the time of application:

  • The completed OF552 form (the photograph is not required).
  • Up to date Curriculum vitae (including a list of publications).
  • Copy of applicant’s passport.

In addition, delegates should provide an outline of their specific research interests in a short proposal that includes information under the following headings:

  • Research title.
  • Objective of research.
  • Statement of research issue/problem/question.
  • Scope of research.
  • Methodology.
  • Monitoring methods.
  • Geographical location(s) where research will be conducted.
  • Detailed list of all scientific equipment and instruments to be used.
  • Details of all vessels, vehicles, aircraft and the like to be used.
  • Schedule of research.
  • Significance/benefits or expected benefits of research with specific reference to benefits/significance to Namibia and/or Namibians (if any).
  • Anticipated output and format of output (i.e., report, publication, etc.) and expected date on which output will be available.
  • Budget.
  • Research funding and sources.
  • Any other information the applicant considers relevant.

This information will be used by Gobabeb to complete the final collective application.

Important: All applications for collecting (research) permits MUST be submitted to ICD9 by the end of September 2018 at the latest and no application can be considered after 30 September 2018.

Please note: If conducting research/collecting in Namibia, you MUST apply for a business/research visa, either through the Namibian Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration, or through the Namibian Embassies in your respective home country, which usually takes about ten days to process.

Visa application form

The following documents should be submitted for a business/research visa.

  • Visa application form.
  • Certified copy of passport/travel document.
  • Motivation letter explaining in detail the purpose for which the visa is required, supported by official letter of Registration and attendance from ICD9 (if attending the Congress only), or Copy of letter from Gobabeb if conducting research.
  • Certified copies of qualification certificates.
  • Appropriate administration fee.

Export permits

All delegates are responsible for arranging their own Export permits, which are required for all biological specimens to be exported from Namibia. Export permits are issued by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism and an application form is provided below:

Application form for Export Permit

This export permit can only be issued AFTER sampling is completed – as a georeferenced inventory of the material needs to be provided to MET and the applicant usually has to physically produce the material for inspection. Applications for an export permit need to be submitted by hand at the office of the Directorate of Scientific Services (Ministry of Environment and Tourism; situated at the junction of Dr. Kenneth David Kaunda Street and Robert Mugabe Avenue, Windhoek), with a payment of N$100 handling fee.

While the Ministry makes every effort to process applications quickly it should be borne in mind that the issuing of export permits is not automatic and may take several days to process.

Any enquires pertaining to Export Permit applications should be directed to Mr. Kenneth Uiseb (, who serves on our Organizing Committee.