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Abe Fellowship Program

Proposal deadline: September 1st, Annually
Funding opportunity: Individual funding
Funding period: Between 3 months and 12 months over a 24-month period
Funding maximum: Varies

Program Detail

The Abe Fellowship Program is administered by the Social Science Research Council (SSRC), with support and funding from CGP.

The Abe Fellowship Program is designed to encourage international multidisciplinary research on topics of pressing global concern. The program seeks to foster the development of a new generation of researchers interested in policy-relevant topics of long-range importance and seeks individuals willing to become key members of a bilateral and global research network built around such topics. It strives especially to promote a new level of intellectual cooperation between the Japanese and American academic and professional communities committed to and trained for advancing global understanding and problem solving.

Research support to individuals is at the core of the Abe Fellowship Program. Applications are welcome from scholars and non-academic research professionals. The objectives of the program are to foster high quality research in the social sciences and related disciplines, to build new collaborative networks or researchers around the four thematic foci of the program, to bring new data and new data resources to the attention of those researchers, and to obtain from them a commitment to a comparative and transnational line of inquiry.


  • Successful applicants, citizens of the United States and Japan as well as to nationals of other countries, must be able to demonstrate strong and serious long-term affiliations with research communities in Japan or the United States.
  • Applicants must hold a Ph.D. or the terminal degree in their field, or have attained an equivalent level of professional experience at the time of application.
  • Previous language training is not a prerequisite for this Fellowship. However, if the research project requires language ability, the applicant should provide evidence of adequate proficiency to complete the project.
  • Applications from researchers in professions other than academia are encouraged with the expectation that the product of the fellowship will contribute to the wider body of knowledge on the topic specified.
  • Projects proposing to address key policy issues or seeking to develop a concrete policy proposal must reflect non-partisan positions.

Please note the following:
  1. Past recipients of the Abe Fellowship are ineligible. 
  2. Fellows are not allowed to hold the Abe Fellowship and the Japan Foundation Fellowship concurrently. 


The Abe Fellowship Research Agenda

Applicants are invited to submit proposals for research in the social sciences and related disciplines relevant to any one or any combination of the four themes below:

  • Threats to Personal, Societal, and International Security: Especially welcome topics include food, water, and energy insecurity; pandemics; climate change; disaster preparedness, prevention, and recovery; conflict, terrorism, and cyber security.    

  • Growth and Sustainable Development: Especially welcome topics include global financial stability, trade imbalances and agreements, adjustment to globalization, climate change and adaptation, and poverty and inequality.

  • Social, Scientific, and Cultural Trends and Transformations: Especially welcome topics include aging and other demographic change, benefits and dangers of reproductive genetics, gender and social exclusion, expansion of STEM education among women and under-represented populations, migration, rural depopulation and urbanization, impacts of automation on jobs, poverty and inequality, and community resilience.

  • Governance, Empowerment, and Participation: Especially welcome topics include challenges to democratic institutions, participatory governance, human rights, the changing role of NGO/NPOs, the rise of new media, and government roles in fostering innovation. 


Across the Program's four dominant themes, projects should demonstrate important contributions to intellectual and/or policy debates and break new theoretical or empirical ground. Within this framework, priority is given to research projects that formulate solutions that promote a more peaceful, stable, and equitable global society or ameliorate the challenges faced by communities worldwide. Applicants are expected to show how the proposed project goes beyond previous work on the topic and builds on prior skills to move into new intellectual terrain.

Please note that the purpose of this Fellowship is to support research activities. Therefore, projects whose sole aim is travel, cultural exchange, and/or language training will not be considered. However, funds for language tutoring or refresher courses in the service of research goals will be included in the award if the proposal includes explicit justification for such activities.


    Terms of the fellowship are flexible and are designed to meet the needs of researchers at different stages in their careers. The program provides Abe Fellows with a minimum of 3 months and maximum of 12 months of full-time support over a 24-month period. Part-time residence abroad in the United States or Japan is required.

    Application Process

    For information on how to apply to the Abe Fellowship Program, please refer to the Abe Fellowship page on the Social Science Research Council website. 

    2016-2017 Fellows
    2015-2016 Fellows
    2014-2015 Fellows
    2013-2014 Fellows
    2012-2013 Fellows
    2011-2012 Fellows
    2010-2011 Fellows
    2009-2010 Fellows

    2008-2009 Fellows 

    2007-2008 Fellows 
    2006-2007 Fellows