Application for Research Permits

All researchers and scholars intending to conduct research in Cameroon must obtain a research permit from the Ministry of Scientific Research and Innovation (MINRESI). The application can be submitted directly to MINRESI in Cameroon, through a partner at a Cameroonian university or research institution, or with assistance from the Congo Basin Institute (CBI).

Depending on proposed research topics, techniques and localities, various permits may be required in addition to the MINRESI permit:

Wildlife researchers and researchers working in protected areas: need to obtain a research permit from the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife (MINFOF).

Researchers wanting to undertake research involving human subjects: will require an Ethical Clearance from the National Ethics Committee and if the work touches on medical issues will require an Administrative Clearance from the Ministry of Public Health. Additional information is available on request.

Researchers wanting to work in the Bouamir Research Station: will need approval from the Bouamir Research Station Management Committee. Additional information is available on request.

Researchers wanting to export specimens from Cameroon: will need an export permit from the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife. Additional customs requirements may be needed depending on what is to be exported. Additional information is available on request.

As part of our mission to promote high-quality research in Central Africa, CBI can assist researchers in applying for MINRESI and MINFOF research permits. Researchers wishing to use the services of the CBI should begin the process of applying for MINRESI permits 2 months before they plan to travel to Cameroon, 4 months if MINFOF permits are also required. We cannot guarantee outcomes and delivery of permits but can help to lodge applications and follow up prior to your arrival in Cameroon.

The following table summarizes the permit process:

MINRESI Research Permit MINFOF Research Permit MINFOF Export Permit Ministry of Public Health

Bouamir Management Committee

CBI Assistance

Time Frame

Research in protected areas or with wildlife

X

X X

4 months

Undertaking human subjects research

X

X

Research at Bouamir Research Station

X

X X X

4 months

Exporting specimens from Cameroon X X X

4 months

Procedure for MINRESI Research Permits

The Ministry of Scientific Research and Innovation requires that researchers work with a Cameroonian researcher from a local academic or research institution. For assistance with MINRESI permits, information about permitting costs, and help in identifying local collaborators, please contact: cbi.bastos@gmail.com, and copy Dr. Kevin Njabo at kynjabo@ucla.edu.

To apply for a permit through CBI, please send the following documents to cbi.bastos@gmail.com, and copy Dr. Kevin Njabo at kynjabo@ucla.edu:

  • A scanned copy of passport of researcher(s).
  • An outline of the research topic/research protocol and planned research sites.
  • A timeline of the research activities in Cameroon.
  • A completed MINRESI research permit application form (one for each member of the team if applicable).
  • A completed MINRESI CV form for each applicant.
  • Passport-sized photos of each researcher ready to print.
  • The name of a Cameroonian researcher who will be the local collaborator.*
  • The name of a Cameroonian student who will work on the project.*
  • Proof that the local student is currently enrolled in a university or research institution in Cameroon (e.g. school fee receipts, current student ID, etc.).*
  • A release form signed by the Dean of Studies allowing the student to participate in the study. The form must also be signed by the student.*
  • If using the services of the CBI, a note from the Management of the Congo Basin Institute authorizing Cameroonian professor/researcher to work with the CBI.

* CBI can assist in identifying collaborators and securing necessary paperwork

Procedure for MINFOF Scientific Research Permits

If you would like CBI to assist you to acquire a research permit from MINFOF, send the following documents to cbi.bastos@gmail.com and copy kynjabo@ucla.edu:

  • A copy of your MINRESI permit(s).
  • Passport-sized photos of each researcher ready to print.
  • An outline of the research topic/research protocol and planned research sites.

If you choose to have CBI assist with the MINFOF research permit, you should initiate the process four months before arrival in Cameroon.

For details on the MINFOF permit please see the following:

Obtaining a scientific capture permit 

Obtaining a scientific research permit 

Research Reports

After concluding your research, all researchers must make a written report which CBI will submit to the Ministry of Scientific Research and Innovation. This report should briefly summarize the research work undertaken in country and the planned next steps. Any resulting publications should be emailed to CBI so they can be passed on to the relevant Ministries and agencies.

Sample Collections

Increasing the capacity of central African scientists is a core element of CBI’s mission, and in addition to connecting foreign and Cameroonian researchers, we strongly encourage visiting researchers to consider the following when planning their research trips:

  1. When sample collections are planned, please consider leaving samples in Cameroon for further local research. CBI can assist in determining where particular samples can be housed in Cameroon.
  2. Budget for the local student and collaborator to curate or process the samples in country. Laboratory space is available on a fee for use basis through CBI.
  3. Work with local collaborators and students to develop common research proposals.
  4. Foster a collaboration such that local students and researchers have contributed meaningfully enough to be included on any publication resulting from the research.