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When you look for a postdoc position, how many times do you ask your references to write a letter? I know it depends on the working place, but what do you think in your region? I sometimes feel it's bothering my supervisor of the Ph.D. course or an advisor of the current postdoc position.

In my experience, I was looking for a postdoc in math in Europe. It took around 20 times a challenge to get it. (but only three or four times to ask to write a letter at the moment)

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People ask as often as they need to. It is hard to apply otherwise. Advisors recognize this.

But when you first ask, mention that you don't know how often you will need to ask. If they are smart enough they will have a letter that can be resent to a new place with only minor revisions.

Some people will have available staff at the department that can prepare and send a letter, requiring only a signature. And desktop printers make it easy enough. Ask if you need to.

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