The Japan-IMF Scholarship Program for Asia (JISPA) was first introduced in 1993. It is funded by the Government of Japan, administered by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and conducted at various graduate schools in Japan.
Its key objective is to contribute to institutional capacity building in economic policymaking to promote the sustainable growth of emerging and developing economies in Asia and the Pacific.
By training future macroeconomic managers in these countries, the JISPA aims to enable them to better formulate sound economic and financial stability policies needed for sustainable growth and development.
The JISPA targets highly motivated government officials who may serve as future macroeconomic policy makers with the capacity and vision to contribute effectively to the economic development of their countries. This scholarship is for government officials.
Scholarship awards are made on the basis of the candidate’s academic record and work background, mathematical and statistics skills, English language proficiency, and potential for contributing to the macroeconomic and financial management and economic development of their country.
The assessment also includes qualities such as the candidate’s commitment to public service, willingness to learn, and openness to new ideas. The program comprises of two tracks: the partnership track, discussed in Part II of this brochure, and the open track, discussed in Part III.
Because of the strong competition for scholarships, the JISPA is highly selective. In 2018-19, a total of 35 new scholarships were made available to candidates for the partnership track. There is no fixed limit on new scholarships for the open track, but generally only a small number of scholarships are awarded.
Scholarships provide for admission and tuition fees, a monthly stipend that includes housing and subsistence allowance, medical and accident insurance, one round trip economy class air ticket, and a lump sum pre-arrival allowance to cover visa application costs, testing fees like TOEFL, and a medical examination, and book shipping costs. The scholarship covers expenses incurred by the scholar only.
Officials who receive the JISPA scholarship cannot accept other scholarships. Scholars are expected to devote full time to their studies while in Japan.
Once accepted into the program, the scholars are expected to attend all classes, maintain a solid academic standing, and conduct themselves appropriately in accordance with the university’s internal guidelines and Japanese laws and regulations.
Currently, the JISPA is open to qualified candidates from the following countries:
Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Lao P.D.R., Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pacific Island Countries, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam.
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studis (GRIPS)
GRIPS is a graduate school specializing on education and research in the area of policy studies, located in Roppongi, which is one of the trendiest cultural and international districts in the heart of Tokyo. For JISPA scholars, GRIPS offers one year Macroeconomic Policy Program and two year Macroeconomic Policy Program (MEP).
The Hitotsubashi University is a leading university in economics and business in Japan. For the JISPA scholars, it offers the two year Asian Public Policy Program (APPP) at the School of International and Public Policy, leading to the degree of Master of Public Policy (Public Economics).
International University of Japan (IUJ)
For JISPA scholars, IUJ offers the two year Macroeconomic Policy Program (MIPP). The program provides rigorous training in the principles of economics and their applications in policy analysis.
The University of Tokyo (UTokyo)
For the JISPA scholars, the UTokyo offers the two year Master of Public Policy, International Program (MIPP/IP), which was launched in October 2010.
See the complete course listing in the PDF belowJISPA2018_eBrochure
Further reading, https://www.imf.org/external/oap/intro.htm
Application form guide, https://www.imf.org/external/oap/partguide.htm
Travel to Japan will be economy class by the most direct flights available. The IMF will provide scholars with pre-paid tickets and a travel allowance.
Assistance in applying for visas will be provided by the universities. Accommodation in Japan will be arranged for scholars by the university.
Upon completion of the program, the scholars are expected to return to their home agency to utilize the knowledge and skills acquired through their studies under the JISPA.
The program comprises of two tracks: the partnership track, discussed in Part II of this brochure, and the open track, discussed in Part III. Because of the strong competition for scholarships, the JISPA is highly selective. In 2018-19, a total of 35 new scholarships are available to candidates for the partnership track. There is no fixed limit on new scholarships for the open track, but generally only a small number of scholarships are awarded.
The partnership track of the JISPA allows scholars to study in specially designed graduate level courses concentrating on macroeconomics at an IMF partnership university. The universities offer programs for JISPA scholars designed to equip scholars to engage in macroeconomic policy dialogue at the international level.
All of the programs have a strong macroeconomic oriented focus, with core courses offered in macroeconomic and financial theory and policies. In addition, the programs offer optional subjects that will help scholars pursue their particular interests and research agenda.
All programs contain a thesis or research paper component that will allow the student to develop policy research skills. After an initial screening of applications, selected candidates will be contacted by the IMF to arrange an interview, which is typically done in their countries with representatives from the partnership universities.
A math and/or English examination may also be administered at this time. The final selection will be made on the basis of the interview, math and English competencies, the application form, and any other supplementary information.
The open track of the JISPA provides support to scholars who wish to study graduate-level macroeconomics or a related field at either the master’s or PhD level at any leading university in Japan. However, priority is given to Ph.D. candidates.
It is geared towards highly motivated officials who are able to identify a course of study in Japan suitable to their professional pursuits in the public sector and supportive of their future work as an economic policy maker. They typically cover all or most of tuition costs and related expenses and provide a monthly stipend for the scholar. The scholarship covers expenses incurred by the scholar only.
For a master’s degree, a scholarship can be awarded for up to two consecutive one-year periods and for a Ph.D. degree for up to three consecutive one-year periods, depending on a university’s requirements under a specific course of study. Annual renewal of the scholarship is subject to approval by the IMF, based on the scholar’s progress, university’s assessment, and sponsoring agency’s consent.
Send your application to
Please prepare all the necessary information required in the application form, which is listed in the sample application form. You are requested to complete entering the information and upload all the required documents in one sitting. No changes, even due to typing mistakes, can be made after submission. If you make a mistake, you are requested to resubmit with another email address, i.e., re-enter all the information together with uploading all the required documents, then to inform OAP at firstname.lastname@example.org of the new reference number.
Japan-IMF Scholarship Program for Asia
IMF Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific
21F, Fukoku Seimei Building
2-2-2 Uchisaiwaicho, Chiyodaku
Tokyo, 100-0011 Japan
Telephone: +81 3 3597 6708