Overseas Fellowship Division
Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS)
5-3-1, Kojimachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-0083 JAPAN


About RONPAKU Program

The aim of this program has been to provide tutorial and financial support for promising researchers in countries of Asia and Africa or other specified countries who wish to obtain their PhD degrees from Japanese universities through the submission of a dissertation without matriculating a doctoral course. Grantees under the program (RONPAKU Fellows) are given the opportunity to visit their Japanese advisor to receive direct supervision at the Japanese university where they will submit their PhD thesis.

This program is offered to researchers in the following countries

ASIA (including Middle East countries)
Afghanistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, South Korea, Kuwait, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, the Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Syria, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Turkey, UAE, Vietnam and Yemen

Algeria, Angora, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe

EUROPE (specified countries)
Azerbaijan, Armenia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz, Georgia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan

JSPS also treats Taiwan and Palestine in this manner.

※Please note that the countries that are considered to have sufficiently developed the systems for conferring of degrees will be exempted from the list of the applicable countries after the FY 2018 call. More specifically, the applicable countries will be limited to the countries and regions which are the official development assistance recipients from the Japanese government.

Application Guidelines.


The candidate must be a researcher

  • Who has nationality in an applicable country in the above-listed countries
  • Who is employed full time at a university or research institution in his/her home country or will be appointed to such a position by April 1, 2017
  • Who is 45 years of age or younger as of April 1, 2017

Further eligibility requirements for this program are provided in the Application Guidelines.

Number of Fellowships to be Awarded

Approximately 20

Fellowship Tenure

Maximum of 3 years from 1 April 2017

JSPS Support

 (For fellows selected by JFY2011)
  • RONPAKU Fellows may visit their Japanese host university once a year for a maximum period of 90 days for the purpose of studying under the supervision of their Japanese advisor.
  • JSPS provides RONPAKU Fellows with a roundtrip international air ticket (economy class), maintenance allowance and medical/accidental insurance, and covers expenses related to dissertation submission during their stays in Japan.
  • The Japanese advisor may visit the RONPAKU fellow's home university or research institution once a year for a maximum period of 30 days for the purpose of supervising RONPAKU Fellow’s study.
  • JSPS provides Japanese Advisors with a roundtrip air ticket (economy class) and maintenance allowance, and covers their visa issuance fees and supervising expenses during their stays in the fellow's country.
  • During the fellow’s stay in Japan, JSPS provides the Japanese Advisor with an allowance for supervising his/her study at the host institution.
 (For fellows (will be)selected after JFY2012)
  • Total funding provided to Japanese host university
    Maximum of 3.6million yen (Up to 1.2million yen per fiscal year)
  • The following expenses can be covered by the above funding:
    Travel expenses between Japan and RONPAKU fellow’s home country, and within Japan by the fellow and his/her Japanese advisors; expenses incurred in conducting research in Japan and fellow’s home country; and other expenses related to the fellow’s dissertation submission (based on Japanese host university’s regulations), etc.
  • Details
    JSPS will contract the Japanese host universities, conclude a contract with them to commission the RONPAKU program operation, and provide them with funding of up to ¥1.2 million per fiscal year. RONPAKU fellows will receive travel expenses and other necessary expenses through the Japanese host universities based on its regulations.
    As this program is administered based on the annual budget for each Japanese fiscal year (from 1 April to 31 March), JSPS cannot carry over the remittance of any allowances or other payments to the following fiscal year.

For more information on JSPS’s financial support, please see the Application Guidelines.

Please note: Being awarded a RONPAKU fellowship does not automatically guarantee the obtaining of a PhD degree. Each RONPAKU Fellow is responsible for making the necessary effort to succeed in his/her dissertation research.