JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program 2024 (Funding available)


Applications for the JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program 2024 are open now.
The Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) in collaboration with the United Nations University (UNU) is proud to announce the JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program for the year 2024. This prestigious program is designed to provide talented and accomplished scholars with the opportunity to conduct innovative research relevant to the UNU Center for Policy Research (UNU-CPR). This program also influences the UNU Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS) in Tokyo, Japan.

JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program 2024 (Funding available)

JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program 2024 (Funding available)

The UNU and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) jointly administer the JSPS–UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program, which aims to provide work opportunities to exceptionally talented and highly qualified young researchers. Host researchers at domestic universities and research facilities throughout Japan to conduct advanced sustainability research in collaboration with UNU-IAS.


Candidates with professional and/or research experience who have finished their doctorates within the last six years (with the period of maternity or paternity leave deducted) are eligible for this fellowship. The nomination authority for the JSPS–UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program is UNU-IAS Tokyo. The host researcher will oversee the fellows’ work, and they will be regarded as full members of the host university. If authorized by both the host university and the fellows, research may be conducted at UNU-IAS.

Costs for JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program 2024

  • Airfare: a one-way ticket (by JSPS guidelines).
  • Monthly maintenance allowance: JPY 362,000.
  • Other: a JPY 200,000 settling-in allowance and international travel insurance.

The JSPS reserves the right to modify the award amounts.

Note: Fellows who already reside in Japan or who get resident status before the fellowship’s start date will not be eligible to receive the flight ticket to Japan or the settling-in payment.

To pay for costs associated with cooperative research, a research grant (Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research) is offered. The host researcher submits an application for these awards via the host institution.

Research Areas

Fellows in this program are required to work under the host researcher’s supervision to undertake research in one of the following topic areas. The suggested study must take gender issues into account and be pertinent to policy. Listed below are the following research areas and their qualification:

Sustainable Development and Governance (GSD)

By examining the trade-offs and synergies between the global environment and the sustainable development goals (SDGs), this program seeks to lead research on governance for sustainability and climate change. It will help bring about the inclusive transformation of socio-economic systems. This theme area, in general, focuses on the localization and institutionalization of SDGs, climate-biodiversity coherent governance, and synergies between climate change and SDGs. The program may address several topics, including stakeholder involvement, national climate adaptation planning, integrated assessment modeling, carbon market mechanisms, climate mitigation, and SDG governance.

The Paris Agreement climate action specialization will improve the ability to carry out the agreement and its related sustainable development goals by providing joint practicum training with international partners and instruction on the knowledge required to carry out the agreement at the national and international levels.

This program offers several chances to investigate innovative and cooperative solutions for just transition, good governance, capacity building, and new collaborations at the international, national, and local levels through research and capacity building.

Qualifications that are necessary:

  • Ph.D. in Environmental Studies, Business Administration, Public Administration, or a related branch of study.
  • Proven research abilities and a solid track record of publications in pertinent fields of study.
  • Capacity to influence policy and framework development among stakeholders through knowledge and research promotion and communication.
  • It is desirable to have a working understanding of extra languages, but English competency is mandatory.

Society and Biodiversity (BDS)

This program aims to expand our understanding of the intricate linkages between biodiversity and human well-being. It is also to incorporate a range of information about humans, and nature to establish a sustainable society that coexists with the natural world. All stakeholders use landscape approaches, which revolve around production landscapes and seascapes, to negotiate their needs and interests to discover place-based sustainable solutions in an interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary manner. The research recognizes biodiversity as the foundation of ecosystem health and human well-being and covers a wide range of topics, including biocultural diversity, green infrastructure, circular economies, sustainable food systems, and social-ecological resilience in addition to social-ecological resilience and transformational governance.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and other international policy processes about biodiversity and sustainability are all meant to benefit from research.

Qualifications that are necessary:

  • PhD degree (without an ABD) in an area of applied social or environmental sciences, such as development studies, ecosystem management, environmental economics, environmental policy, and landscape architecture.
  • Proven research abilities and a solid track record of publications in related fields.
  • Capacity to plan and carry out fieldwork-based research.
  • It is necessary to be proficient in English, and it is desirable to know at least a few other languages.

Water & Resource Management (WRM)

This initiative seeks to drive research to improve resilience through decentralized natural resource management and to promote circular, low-carbon economies. Fostering greater research collaboration between regional scholars, practitioners, and stakeholders, it improves clever, creative, and community-based sustainable water management. It makes it possible to investigate different water sources and solutions. This initiative simultaneously encourages local government and stakeholders to manage water resources using evidence-based practices. The program adds significantly to water-related operations at other UN agencies through its distinctive design and location at UNU-IAS, which offers first-rate learning and research opportunities.

Qualifications that are necessary:

  • It is necessary to have a doctorate (without an ABD) in a suitable field, such as economics, quantitative economics, environmental science and engineering, economic policy, or water science and engineering.
  • Capacity to plan, carry out, and summarize field research and desk work.
  • Exceptional written and spoken English proficiency.
  • Outstanding organizational abilities and a spirit of cooperation

Education & Innovation (IVE)

The goal of the Innovation and Education (IVE) program is to advance lifelong learning for sustainable development at all ages. As well as research and practices related to inclusive and innovative education. It supports evidence-based policy recommendations to ensure that local efforts closely match the 2030 Roadmap for Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and translate global goals.

It is highly recommended that those who fulfill the prerequisites apply by March 10, 2024, at 23:59 JST. The form must be filled out in English.
. These include community-based climate actions, cutting-edge and inclusive learning technologies for sustainable development, education-based cultural heritage preservation, research-based net-zero implementation capacity building for professionals, and the right to education of displaced people due to climate change. Additionally, the program works with two well-known ESD networks—Regional Centres of Expertise on ESD (RCEs) and ProSPER. Net—as its secretariat, facilitating multi-stakeholder partnerships in ESD.

Qualifications that are necessary:

  • Ph.D. degree (without an ABD) in a relevant discipline, such as computer science, educational technology, environmental policy, education, or even just education, and/or prior experience working in the social and environmental sciences.
  • Proven research and communication abilities in related fields.

A working knowledge of Japanese and/or other UN official languages is desirable. Preferred research focus areas include education for biodiversity, climate change, and/or sustainable consumption and production, innovative pedagogies, inclusive learning technologies, and/or institutional and organizational challenges to incorporate ESD into higher education activities. Ability to design, implement, and synthesize research involving both desk work and fieldwork

Eligibility Criteria for JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program 2024

  • At the time of application, candidates must either have a doctorate in hand (a degree earned on or after April 2, 2018, deducting the duration of any maternity or paternity leave, counting four weeks as a month). You must also have a doctorate scheduled to be awarded before the fellowship’s start.
  • Candidates must be nationals of nations with diplomatic ties to Japan; scholars from Taiwan and Palestine are welcome to apply.
  • Permanent residents of Japan and Japanese nationals, including those who possess dual citizenship, are not allowed to apply. Additionally, ineligible are those who have already received a Standard or Pathway Fellowship from the JSPS Postdoctoral Fellowship for Research in Japan.

Applications for JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship Program 2024

It is urged of interested and eligible individuals to apply by March 10, 2024, at 23:59 JST. The form must be filled out in English.

Please be aware that before applying for the fellowship, the host researcher must be verified. Applicants must find a host researcher but at a Japanese university on their own. The UNU-IAS Fellowship Committee cannot assist in this process. Moreover, researchers at UNU-IAS are not qualified to work as host researchers.

Moreso, Once the deadline has passed, the UNU-IAS Fellowship Committee will begin reviewing entries. Only those who make the shortlist will be invited for an online interview. The Fellowship Committee will then certify that the chosen host researcher intends to oversee the candidate.

For more information, visit JSPS-UNU Postdoctoral Fellowship

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