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Support for Foreign Researchers at the NCVC

The Office for the Promotion of Diversity and Inclusion aims to support students and researchers from foreign countries by providing useful information to aid their applications to funding bodies for traineeship and fellowship applications, information to support NCVC staff wishing to host foreign researchers in their departments, and importantly information on the facilities available at the NCVC and local areas.

General Information on Osaka and living near the NCVC

Many staff and visitors to the NCVC live in the surrounding cities of Suita, Ibaraki, Toyonaka, Ikeda and Minoh. Each city office provides important information and guides for living in their city's suburbs, including information on housing, utilities (gas, electricity and water services), banking, garbage and recycling, Japanese language services and health insurance. They also can provide information regarding local schools and the schooling system, hospitals, dentists, libraries and public gyms/sports centers, in addition to disaster prevention guidelines.

  • City Office Websites are listed here (iFReC http://www.ifrec.osaka-u.ac.jp/en/liaison/links/city_hall.html) with opening hours and public transport information to get there.
  • Information on the Kita Osaka (OSAKA CONVENTION & TOURISM BUREAU)
  • A webpage guide for living in the city of Osaka (OSAKA CITY) is also very useful for general information and procedures upon arrival in Japan. However, some of this information on schools and facilities is specific to the City of Osaka (central district) and not applicable to Kita Osaka.
  • Likewise, similar information about living in Kita Osaka is available for foreign students at Osaka University (neighbouring the NCVC and also one of the major universities collaborating with the NCVC on various projects), which can be useful for students planning to visit the NCVC.

Process of Visa Application for a Residence Permit

All foreign nationals wishing to work or study at the NCVC must apply for a visa appropriate for the intended duration of their visit through the Osaka Regional Immigration Bureau (Immigration Bureau of JAPAN) of the Immigration Bureau of Japan.

A simplified explanation of the process and our role is provided here

  1. In general, a Certificate of Eligibility from the Osaka Regional Immigration Bureau is required to simplify the visa application process. The NCVC host can provide applicants with an application form for the Certificate of Eligibility or it can be downloaded here.
    • most applicants will enter Japan as a student or researcher using the following form, which can be completed by the applicant and host researcher (who can advise on the category selection for 'purpose of entry' (Immigration Bureau of JAPAN)).
    • The NCVC will prepare a letter of support for students and researchers approved to visit the NCVC and use its facilities. Following the instructions on the form (also available at http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/english/tetuduki/kanri/shyorui/01.html (Immigration Bureau of JAPAN)), applicants must provide details of academic achievements, evidence of financial support, information regarding previous visits to Japan and employment history.
    • The NCVC will act as a proxy for submission of the application for a Certificate of Eligibility with the necessary supporting documents (in which case applicants can provide us with a recent passport portrait photograph as a digital file to attach to the application) to the Osaka Regional Immigration Bureau.
    • Note, at the time of application information regarding the initial intended place of residence is required (apartment, NCVC resident house or other - see information below).
    • Processing times for Certificate of Eligibility applications vary between 1 and 2 months on average, but can be up to 3 months if accurate information is not provided in applications.
  2. Once a Certificate of Eligibility is received by the host at the NCVC this certificate will be posted by courier to the applicant for submission to their nominated Embassy or Consulate of Japan in their current country of residence with their passport. This certificate speeds the processing of visa applications.

Full details on the immigration procedures and the process of acquiring a Certificate of Eligibility for your visa application are available at http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/english/tetuduki/index.html (Immigration Bureau of JAPAN)

Once new researchers arrive at the NCVC they will receive information from their hosts or this office on Resident Registration in the appropriate City Office where they will be residing.


Getting to the NCVC in Suita and Local Transportation

The NCVC is located close to the northern limits of Osaka prefecture in the city of Suita. Visitors can make their way to the NCVC via one of the following most commonly used routes. It is important to know that the Kansai region and Osaka in particular, is serviced by multiple independent train companies. Airport homepages are a good source of information for using the trains and other forms of transport within Osaka (including Hyperdia (http://www.hyperdia.com/en/) transport and timetable service).

  1. Arrival at Kansai International Airport: Many airlines have direct flights to Osaka via Kansai International Airport [http://www.kansai-airport.or.jp/en/index.asp](Kansai International Airport). From there several options are available for travel to NCVC using public transport. Note, this airport is 65km south of the NCVC.
    • Kansai Airport Limousine Bus to Umeda Station, where a local train service can be used to get to Senrichuo train station (one of the two nearby stations to the NCVC) using the subway Midosuji Line. From there the NCVC can be reached by taxi, bus (Aodanchi line, 15min) or walking (30-40 min).
    • Catch the Nankai line to Namba station and change train services to the subway Midosuji line to Senrichuo station. From there use taxi, bus or walk.
    • Catch the JR Airport Rapid Service to Shin-Osaka and change to the subway line Midosuiji to the end of the line at Senrichuo. From there use taxi, bus or walk.
  2. Arrival at Itami (Osaka) Airport: This airport is much closer to the NCVC and services domestic flights only, but is useful for persons arriving in Japan at Narita, Haneda or other major airports in Japan. From the airport catch the monorail[http://www.osaka-airport.co.jp/en/access/train/] (Osaka International Airport)to Senrichuo station. From there use taxi, bus or walk.

The majority of people in Osaka take advantage of train services, including the monorail for travel within Osaka and between towns and cities. For short distance travel, bicycles and buses are the most commonly used, and cars for those that can afford the carpark lease charges and are able to convert their driver's license in to a Japanese driver's license (see "Japan driver's license" http://www.japandriverslicense.com/). Useful information about all modes of transport can be found in various travel homepages:

  • https://www.tripadvisor.com/Travel-g298566-s303/Osaka:Japan:Public.Transportation.html (tripadvisor)
  • http://www.japanguidebook.com/getting-around-osaka-45/ (Japan Guidebook)

Facilities available to students and researchers at the NCVC

Childcare facilities are available for infants on site at the NCVC (hours of availability 8am~19pm). For visitors residing alone at the NCVC there is a Resident House available for single-room accommodation with shared facilities. Otherwise, hosts at NCVC are generally able to assist with finding accommodation.

Other useful links on travel in all regions of Osaka, and renting pocket Wifi in Japan

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