I currently live in a country which, according to the index of passport power (2018), holds the top ranking passport in the world.
I only have an Iranian passport and I found a website where I could compare my passport with other passports: www.henleypassportindex.com/compare-passport
If you know me, you definitely know about my UK visa rejections and my online presence at EUROCALL2017 (here is the link to the story just in case: https://parisamehran.wordpress.com/2017/09/01/denied-yet-present-at-eurocall-2017-a-memoir/)
EUROCALL2018 will be held in Jyväskylä, Finland next month. Here is the title of my poster presentation:
In the middle of visa application for Finland, I wanted to give up many times and asked myself this question all the time:
“What if my visa application is denied again?”
Many thanks to a Canadian friend who encouraged me to continue and apply, I am off to Tokyo tomorrow to submit the documents on Monday and here I would like to share some of the tweets by Naveen Minai about the challenges of academics in, [and from], the Global South.
Before she starts, she emphasizes that she knows the term ‘Global South’ is still problematic and contested but she needs a shorthand for Twitter.
We need to apply for visas for traveling for conferences and research. Visa applications are time-consuming, expensive, and require a ton of running around and documentations, and approval is not guaranteed even if you have an invitation from conference organizers.
This means we often don’t apply for conferences in other countries because we
can’t afford the visa app fee
don’t have time to complete the visa application requirements
Also, a lot of us earn in currencies which are weak compared to, for example, US & Canadian dollars, UK pounds, or Euros. So it costs A LOT for us to not only apply for visas, but also to travel if we do get the visa in time.
Here is the list of documents that I prepared to apply for the Finnish visa and I have to mention that I paid 75,000 JPY (670 USD) yen for the translation of the Japanese documents. I also need to remark that it took me about 2 months and a half to collect all the documents:
- Application form
- Copy of the personal information page in my passport
- Copy of my alien registration card
- One colored passport photograph
- Travel insurance
- Reservation for travel tickets
- Hotel reservation
- Bank statement for the last six months
- Bank account balance statement
- Certificate of studentship
- Certificate of Japanese Government Scholarship (Monbukagakusho)
- Receipt of the conference registration
- Payroll statement: Princeford English College, Kobe City University of Foreign Languages, Kobe Women’s University, Konan Women’s University
- Invitation letter from EUROCALL2018
- My supervisor’s letter saying that all the expenses will be covered by Osaka University
- My business card
- Copies of job contracts
- Certificate of marraige
- My husband’s alien registration card and personal information page in his passport
This year I also submitted two proposals to ISLS2018. Both of them got accepted, I registered for the conference and paid 160 Canadian Dollars, but I had to withdraw simply because I found the application for Canadian visa too complicated especially because the Visa and Immigration Section at the Embassy of Canada in Japan (Tokyo) is closed and services have been transferred to the Embassy of Canada in Philippines (Manila) plus I did not have time to complete the visa application requirements.
Here, I would like to ask academics in the Global North to please x 10000 include video conference/Skype tech for conferences whenever possible so we can participate too! Esp b/c I do appreciate that funds &/or discounts for international travel & accommodation is also difficult to do!
And I cannot finish this blog post without referring to the following tweets.