Japan Society for the Promotion of Science


The program provides an opportunity to conduct collaborative research for young overseas researchers under the guidance of their hosts in universities and other research institutions in Japan.

1. History

JSPS launched the “Postdoctoral invitees from the United Kingdom and West Germany” in 1979. 10 people from each country were invited for two years based on recommendations from the Royal Society in the UK and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in West Germany.

The main idea of this invitation program was stated in the “Overview of FY 1979 JSPS Projects” as follows: In view of many of our country’s brilliant young researchers have gained valuable experiences by courtesy of the developed countries, such as the UK, the U.S., France and other nations since the end of the WWII, we initiate the government-funded program to contribute to the international academic exchange. The program begun to include France as an invitation subject country in 1983 and changed the program name into the “Postdoctoral invitees from the United Kingdom, West Germany and France”.We invited 179 young researchers from 1979 to 1987.

Based on the success of the nine years of the program, we decided to accept young researchers from the U.S.in 1988 as well as to renew our effort to improve the program by giving grantees the eligibility to apply for the Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research, and renamed the program as the “JSPS Postdoctoral Fellowship for Overseas Researchers”.
We began accepting applications once a year submitted individually by Japanese host researchers who belong to universities and other research institutions in Japan and wish to invite overseas colleagues (the domestic recruitment system).

The number of public recruitment subject countries was up to 12 countries in 1989 and 25 countries in 1991. As a result of continuous expansion, the eligibility was broadened for countries that have diplomatic relation with Japan in 1994. Additionally, we established a more flexible invitation system that issued a domestic public recruitment twice a year.

Owing to the transfer of the “STA Fellowship”, which had been carried out by the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), to JSPS in 2001, more research laboratories and institutions have joined as host institutions. At the same time, the number of the overseas nominating authorities increased to 35 and that of the recruit subject countries became 25.

Moreover, we integrated the “JSPS Postdoctoral Fellowship for Overseas Researchers” with the “Invitation Fellowship for Research in Japan” and have offered them as the “JSPS International Fellowship for Research in Japan” since 2015. It has been implemented by providing the varied programs that enables an applicant to select the program that suits their career stage and desired invitation tenure.

2. Fields of Research

All fields of the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences.

3. Duration of fellowships

12 to 24 months

4. Candidate (Invited Overseas Researcher) Eligibility

Candidates must satisfy both of the following conditions as of April 1 of the fellowship's fiscal year and during the fellowship period.

(1) Be a citizen of a country that has diplomatic relations with Japan (JSPS treats Taiwanese and Palestinian researchers in this manner).

(2) Candidates must have obtained their doctoral degree within six years of the date the fellowship goes into effect.

Note 1: Those who have previously been awarded and started a fellowship under the JSPS Postdoctoral Fellowship Program for Research in Japan ([Standard], and [Pathway to University positions in Japan]) are not eligible.

Note 2: Persons who are Japanese citizen and foreigners who are permitted permanent residence in Japan are not eligible.

Note 3: Researchers who obtained their PhD within six years minus time taken for maternity and/or parental leave.
 (Every four weeks of leave is counted as one month, with any remaining weeks also counted as one month.
 These months are subtracted from the number of years elapsed since the researcher’s PhD was received.)

Note 4: A person who was selected as a fellow needs to submit the doctoral degree certificate or the diploma before the fellowship starting date (Not required when submitting the application).

5. Applicant (Host Resarcher) Eligibility

Persons are eligible to apply who satisfy the following two conditions at the time of application, at the time of 
selection, and during the fellowship period.
(1) Be affiliated with a research institution specified in Article 2(*) of the Procedure for the Handling of Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (KAKENHI),  issued by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and  Technology (MEXT) (*), be eligible to apply for a KAKENHI grant, and wish to host an overseas researcher.
(2) Be a full-time researcher. However, researchers who are not employed full time may be eligible if the host institution judges them able to execute their responsibility to carrying out the program uninterruptedly throughout the fellow’s tenure including providing them a suitable research environment (e.g., laboratory,  space, facilities and personnel) in the same way that a full-time researcher would be able to do.
Each applicant (host researcher) can submit up to three applications. If more than one candidate (invited overseas researcher) apply as candidates for the fellowship at the same time, priorities should be given to them.
(*) Eligible host institutions specified under the above MEXT Procedure are as follows:
1) Universities and inter-university research institutes
2) MEXT-affiliated institutions engaged in research
3) Colleges of technology
4) Institutions designated by the Minister of MEXT

6. Term of Award

(1) Airfare
A round-trip air ticket (based on JSPS’s regulations. See the “Program Guidelines”. )

(2) Maintenance Allowance
¥362,000 per month

(3) Miscellaneous
A settling-in allowance of ¥200,000, Overseas travel insurance, etc.

For the candidate (invited overeas researcher) who has been living in Japan (and has a mailing address) before the fellowship starting date, the "airfare" of outbound and a “settling-in allowance” will not be paid.
A Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (Grant-in-Aid for JSPS Research Fellow) is available to cover cooperative research-related expenses. Application for these grants is made by the applicant (host resarcher) through their institution.