Fieldwork and security

As an employer and hosting institute, Erasmus University has a responsibility for your well-being during your fieldwork abroad, its so-called duty of care. This page explains the support provided by the EUR and the responsibilities you have as a PhD candidate when going on a fieldwork. You will also find some more general information about travelling abroad.


Special attention is asked from researchers who will do fieldwork in complex, remote, and hazardous places. The Institute of Social Studies (ISS) has published a handbook with security guidelines that everyone travelling to high risk countries should read.


  • For Dutch nationals abroad, the Ministry has opened a 24/7 emergency number: +31 247 247 247. Please consult the following sites for more information: and
  • Request for an advance payment for your trip in the Erasmus Employee Self Service (ESS) portal. Do note: travelling abroad for work always requires prior permission from your supervisor.
  • Inform your supervisor and the secretary office of your journey, place of lodging and contact information.
  • Ask your manager for travel permission before departure.
  • Enter your emergency number in the ESS portal. If you do not have access to the ESS portal, you will have to discuss travel plans, costs, and insurances with their supervisor first. 
  • Carry with you the 24/7 Erasmus University Rotterdam emergency number: 0031 6 4084 7882.
  • Ensure you are sufficiently covered by travel insurance (see below for more information).
  • If you travel to high risk countries, prepare in writing an extensive security plan and explicit managerial permission (see below for more information).
  • Depending on the period of stay abroad, we always recommend registering at the Embassy or Consulate of the Netherlands (and/or that of your home country).
  • Be aware that some countries are notorious for cyberespionage, meaning that you have to think about the sensitivity of the information that you carry with you on laptop or phone. It is strongly recommended to use strong virus protectors and sweep your laptop upon return.
  • Do you have specific questions? Contact the international HR department at

Travel advice by the Dutch government and travelling permission

The EUR follows the advice of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs about what the risk is of travelling abroad, distinguishing between four levels of risk (red: don't travel to that country; orange: go only if necessary; yellow: be careful, risky; green: safe to go).

The care with which the ministry makes travel advice sometimes requires a lot of time. As a result, it is possible that current events are reported in the media, but that you do not yet find them in the travel advice.

Please not that the travel advice provided by the government is not binding. It remains the responsibility of yourself, your travel organization and your supervisor to decide whether or not you want to continue your travelling plans.

Prior permission:

  • Travelling abroad for work always requires prior permission from your supervisor.
  • Prior permission for travelling to green/yellow countries can be obtained by applying for an advance and travel insurance via the ESS Portal.
  • In case of travel to orange/red countries, you will first need written consent from your supervisor and a detailed security plan (and when travelling to a red country, also an explanation of the necessity of your journey), which then has to be uploaded in the ESS Portal as well.
  • If you do not have access to the ESS portal, you will have to discuss travel plans, costs, and insurances with their supervisor first. 

Those not having access to the ESS Portal will have to discuss travel plans, costs, and insurances with their manager first. 

Travel insurance and expense claims

The university has a special and rather extensive travel insurance for all employees who travel on a business trip (<180 days) for the university. Please make sure to register your trip before departure, so that you are covered by this EUR insurance. You can find all information about the insurance as well as the terms and conditions here.

In addition, you may apply for an advance of max 90% of your expense claims, such as transport, lodging and visa costs. This advance will be paid within 5 working days. Here you can find more information about how to arrange this advance.

Preventive measures when travelling abroad

This three-minute video gives you a short introduction to the preventive measures you can take when travelling abroad.

preventieve maatregelen

Preventive measures when travelling

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