The Estonian Academy of Sciences holds a contest for the position of Research Professor once in every three years.
This Professorship affords top-level Estonian scientists and scholars, engaged as leading research scientists and supervisors of doctoral students at research and development institutions or universities, to focus on scientific research. Research Professors are elected for a free-year period.
In 2012 Research Professors were elected for the period 2013–2015:
Professor of the University of Tartu Rein Ahas; Senior Researcher of the University of Tartu Anu Realo; Professor of Tallinn University of Technology Tõnis Timmusk.