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Japanese Initiative for the future of Syrian Refugees (JISR)

Application for 2020 has been closed on November 29th.


November 26, 2019 JICA PRESS September 2019, at JICA Mundi
October 29, 2019 First Round of Participants: From Study to Fully-Fledged Members of Society
October 3, 2018 Arrival of the second round of participants and Business Fair and Japanese Program for the first round of participants
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

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 2020
    • Participants will come to Japan in July 2020 to take part in a post-arrival orientation and Japanese Language Program before admission to Japanese universities.
    • Enrollment period depends on university (mostly 3 years. (1 year research student + 2 years master student)). Please see "5. Standard Timetable (Years needed for graduation)" of Annex 5. University Information.

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, 2020)
(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 2020

9. Promotion seminar (dates and venues)

Promotion Seminar Schedule for JISR Program (in Jordan)

as of Sept 12th, 2019

09/09/2019 Monday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Princess Basma Community Development Center, Aydoun (External Link) Irbid
17/09/2019 Tuesday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Princess Basma Community Development Center, Nuzha (External Link) Amman
24/09/2019 Tuesday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Jubilee Center for Excellence in Education, Auditorium (External Link) Amman
02/10/2019 Wednesday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Zaatari Camp, District 2, IRD Center Mafraq
07/10/2019 Monday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Princess Basma Community Development Center, Al Mafraq (External Link) Mafraq
14/10/2019 Monday 10:00-12:00 UNHCR Azraq Camp, Village 2, UNHCR/CARE Community Center Zarqa
16/10/2019 Wednesday 10:00-12:00 Yarmouk University The circular room in the conferences building (External Link) Irbid
21/10/2019 Monday 10:00-12:00 University of Jordan Auditorium of Prince Alhussein Bin Abdullah II School for International Studies (External Link) Amman
23/10/2019 Wednesday 10:00-12:00 Zarqa University EDU-SYRIA Corner 138A, Al Farouq Building, next to Alkouds amphitheater (External Link) Zarqa

Promotion Seminar Schedule for JISR Program (in Lebanon)

as of October 23th, 2019

Unfortunately, promotion seminars in Lebanon for 26th October and 6th November has been cancelled due to social instability in Lebanon.
For those who were planning to attend, please contact jisr.lebanon@gmail.com for the details of the program or any inquiries.

09/10/2019 Wednesday 13:00-15:00 JISR Lebanon Antwork
: May Ziadeh Street, Spears/Kantari, Beirut
(open to public with pre-registration)
*Pre-registration is MANDATORY. Please pre-register by sending the date of the seminar and your full name to <jisr.lebanon@gmail.com> .
Kantari, Beirut

10. Contact Information


Poster and Flyer




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