Japan Society for the Promotion of Science

The Leading Initiative for Excellent Young Researchers (LEADER) works to show new career paths to young researchers which they can succeed with, for example in industry circles, while creating through industry, academia, and government a stable and independent position for young researchers who would tackle new areas of research.


The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) invites posts from the research institutions that wish to participate in this project, and then publicizes those posts after satisfying the requirements through the website of MEXT or JSPS. In parallel with this, we will publicly offer a post of excellent young researchers (EYRs) for young researchers who are motivated to tackle new areas of research and conduct research in a new place of research.
Next, each research institution offering a post negotiates with applicants (young researchers) individually. Furthermore, JSPS conducts a review of the young researcher applicants based on the purpose of this project, and MEXT determines the EYR candidates. As a result, if the EYR candidates obtain a stable and independent research environment in research institutions, MEXT determines those candidates as EYRs and provides a support of research expenditures, etc. as needed for a specified period of time.
Please be aware in advance that the contents may be changed depending on the budget situation.

Process of 2023 Leading Initiative for Excellent Young Researchers (LEADER)

For details, please refer to Application Guidelines etc.


Requirements of 2023

Applicants (Young researchers)

Applicants (researchers) among EYRs, who are going to be active in various research institutions of industry-academia-government, shall satisfy the following requirements. They must meet all these requirements at the time of application.
For details, please refer to Application Guidelines etc.

Attained academic degree, etc.

At the time of application, those who satisfy all requirements in 1) through 4) below:

1) Those who have received a doctor's degree, or those who have acquired all the predetermined credit in graduate school doctoral programs for the standard term of study or more and completed the doctoral program without having a doctoral degree (referred to as “those who completed the doctoral program without receiving a doctoral degree”)

2) As of April 1, 2024, those who are below 40 years of age (those below 43 years of age are accepted if they were enrolled in a medical field which requires clinical training)
For those who have stopped research for a total of 3 months or more due to childbirth or childcare (regardless of sex), we will consider the age requirement by about 1 to 2 years according to individual circumstances.
* In this case, enter the reason why research was suspended, due to childbirth or child-care, in the application form and submit it with an additional document certifying that reason. Please check Application Guidelines etc.

3) Those who have research achievements (a doctoral dissertation can be added for a person who received a Ph. D.) in the past five years (since 2018).

4) Those who have never been selected as EYRs by MEXT


At the time of application, those who fall under any of the following:

1) Those who have Japanese nationality or foreigners who have obtained permission for permanent residence

2) Those who have nationality of countries which have diplomatic relations with Japan (Taiwanese or Palestinian researchers are treated in accordance with this.)