Russia is the largest country in the world with an area of 17,125,191km² and a population of 146.2 million (8.4/km²). The Ural Mountains divide the European and Asian continent. Most of Northern European Russia and Siberia has a sub-arctic climate, with extremely severe winters in the inner regions of Northeast Siberia. Along the shore of the Arctic Ocean and on the Russian arctic islands a polar climate prevails.

Conducting science in the Arctic often requires permits founded in national or local legislation. This information platform aims at providing an overview of the most common permit types relevant for scientists travelling to and working in Russia.

First of all, you need a Russian partner to apply for visa and help you obtain relevant permits to conduct fieldwork in Russia. Please note there are no universal rules for preparing an expedition / fieldwork in Russia and that many issues might have to be clarified separately for each single project. The Russian partner should have the experience and knowledge to guide you through the necessary steps in your research preparations, and will be able to communicate with the authorities. Most information and regulations of relevance to an expedition/fieldwork in Russia is in Russian only.

National rules and regulations are given for the following categories:

  • Cross border travel (persons, equipment, samples, chemicals),
  • Access to specific areas,
  • Permits to conduct fieldwork and collect samples,
  • Field instrumentation,
  • Safety equipment and
  • Regional/local permits.

Additional information sources relevant for conducting science in Russia are also listed.

Disclaimer: INTERACT takes no legal responsibility for the information presented here. These pages only address the most common permit types. Certain studies may require specialist permits not covered here. New regulations may also come into force, permit conditions may change and links may become outdated or no longer work. If you encounter broken links, significant permit updates or have suggestions for additional permit types we can include, please contact us at

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