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Japanese Initiative for the future of Syrian Refugees (JISR)

Application for 2019 has just started.
Application deadline is on November 30th 2018.


May 17, 2018 Arrival of JISR participant's family in Japan
February 9, 2018 The first round of participants starts student life all over Japan
October 12, 2017 The first round of participants arrive in Japan under the Japanese Initiative for the future of Syrian Refugees (JISR)
September 8, 2017 Announcement of the 2018 round of admission of the “Japanese Initiative for the future of Syrian Refugees,” a scholarship program for Syrian refugees
August 21, 2017 Providing Opportunities for Master’s Degrees in Japan for Future Reconstruction in Syria

1. Background

Many thousands of Syrians have been forced to leave their home country and flee to neighboring countries and beyond since the conflict started in 2011, and the majority of these refugees have been staying in host communities. Under their severe and harsh living conditions, the international community is required to support those refugees from a humanitarian standpoint. The protracted crisis is depriving the refugees from their opportunities to study, which is likely to become the main reasons for considerable loss of human resources for the reconstruction of the Syrian Arab Republic (hereinafter referred to as "Syria") in the future.

Against this backdrop, the Japanese government announced in May 2016 that Japan would accept a maximum of 150 Syrian young personnel as students over five years with the aim of offering educational opportunities to Syrian youths who will contribute to Syria's future reconstruction when it takes place. Accordingly, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) established the program "Japanese Initiative for the future of Syrian Refugees" (hereinafter referred to as "JISR") in cooperation with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) for providing higher education opportunities at a Master's degree level in Japanese universities to a maximum of 100 Syrian refugees who are staying in neighboring countries.

2. Objectives

The objective of JISR is to support Syrian refugees who have the potential to contribute to the reconstruction of Syria in the future. This program offers opportunities for young Syrian refugees (hereinafter referred to as "Participants") to study in graduate courses for their Master's courses at Japanese universities. This program intends to foster capable Syrian individuals to lead Syria's reconstruction and peace-building efforts at an appropriate time in the future, while enhancing their understanding of Japanese people, society and systems so as to strengthen the mutual friendship between Syria and Japan.

3. Program Outline

  1. Program Title: Japanese Initiative for the future of Syrian Refugees (JISR)
  2. Language of the Program: English
  3. Course: Master's Degree Program
  4. Number of Participants/year: Approximately 20 (Lebanon & Jordan combined)

4. Duration

  1. Overall Program: August 2016 – September 2024
    Participants will be accepted every year from 2017 to 2021.
  2. Admission Schedule: September / October 2019
    • Participants will come to Japan in July 2019 to take part in a post-arrival orientation and Japanese Language Program before admission to Japanese universities.
    • 6 months or 1 year as a research student if necessary (See Section 12) and 2 years as a Master's student. (Maximum three years enrollment).

5. Target Participants

This program targets Syrian refugees who are known to UNHCR, who are currently residing in Jordan or Lebanon, and who will play leading roles in Syria's reconstruction and peace-building efforts in the private, governmental, or educational sectors in the future.

6. Fields of Study at Japanese Universities

Engineering, Agriculture, Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Business Administration, Social Science (Peacebuilding, Political Science, Public Administration, etc.), and Japanese Language and Culture are specified as key fields of study.

7. Qualifications and Requirements

Applicant must satisfy the following requirements:

(1) Nationality
  • Syrian
(2) Age
  • Between 22 and 39 years of age (as of September 1st, 2019)
(3) Refugee Status / UNHCR Status
  • Applicant who is registered as a refugee by or known to UNHCR
(4) Education
  • Bachelor's degree holder (equivalent to at least 16 years of academic background) or university student in the final year of an undergraduate program who can present a certificate of expected graduation at the time of application
(5) English - language Proficiency
  • English skills both in written and oral communication adequate to complete a Master's course (for those who wish to major in Japanese studies, adequate Japanese skills are also required.)
(6) Academic Ability
  • Academic ability adequate to complete a Master's course
(7) Understanding of the Program
  • Applicant is required to have a clear understanding of the objectives of JISR, and to have a strong intention to contribute to the peacebuilding and/or reconstruction of Syria in the future, as well as strengthen the mutual friendship between Syria and Japan
(8) Others Applicant must:
  • Not be receiving a scholarship offered by organizations, foreign or domestics, for a Master's degree. (It is permissible for applicants to apply for scholarship opportunities aside from JISR. However, after passing the 1st selection (see Section 11), the applicant must withdraw applications to other scholarship programs to pursue the JISR scholarship.)

8. Application Documents for 2019

9. Promotion seminar (dates and venues)

as of September 19, 2018

Promotion Seminar Schedule for JISR Program (in Jordan)

18/09/2018 Tuesday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Princess Basma Community Development Center, Aydoun (external link) Irbid
27/09/2018 Thursday 12:00-14:00 Yarmouk University Conferences Building, Circular Room (external link) Irbid
01/10/2018 Monday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Princess Basma Community Development Center, Al Mafraq (external link) Mafraq
02/10/2018 Tuesday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Zaatari Camp, District 6, IRD Center Mafraq
03/10/2018 Wednesday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Princess Basma Community Development Center, Nuzha (external link) Amman
09/10/2018 Tuesday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Azraq Camp, Village 3, UNHCR/CARE Community Center Zarqa
11/10/2018 Tuesday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Jubilee Center for Excellence in Education, Auditorium (external link) Amman
4th Week of October TBD Zarqa University TBD Zarqa
TBD University of Jordan TBD Amman

10. Contact Information


Poster and Flyer




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