Division of Graduate Studies

Kyoto University Division of Graduate Studies

Support for Pioneering Graduate Students presented by the Kyoto University Graduate Division

1.Overview : Two financial support programs

The most important challenge in graduate schools currently is to encourage talented and motivated students to proceed to doctoral level studies. In order to address this challenge, it is essential to expand financial support for students, clarify future career paths, and provide educational opportunities and support for career development that connects with those paths.

To coordinate and advance initiatives in this area, Kyoto University established the Division of Graduate Studies on October 1, 2021. This new Division will operate a range of financial support measures for graduate students in a unified and effective manner, and develop diverse career paths that enable doctoral degree holders to pursue a broad range of activities.

Kyoto University was recently selected for funding as part of the Support for Pioneering Research Initiated by the Next Generation program operated by the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST). Under this program, as part of an initiative titled Support for Pioneering Research Initiated by the Next Generation presented by the Division of Graduate Studies, Kyoto University (hereinafter referred to as “SPRING program”), research incentive grants and other assistance will be offered to outstanding doctoral program students selected beyond the conventional frameworks of graduate schools and research laboratories.

The selection process for the SPRING Program will be conducted jointly with the Kyoto University Science and Technology Innovation Fellowship Program (hereinafter referred to as “Fellowship”), which is designed to improve the conditions and support the career paths of doctoral students who will assume responsibility for future scientific and technological innovation in Japan. Please refer to application requirements for details of each disciplinary grouping of the Fellowship.

(Reference site)

JST・Japan Science and Technology Agency Pioneering Research Initiated by the Next Generation program
Science and Technology Innovation Creation Fellowship

Please see here for the latest application guidelines and a list of fellows.

2.Disciplinary grouping of the SPRING program

Humanities and Social Sciences/ Informatics and AI/ Quantum science and technology / Materials sciences/ Health, medical sciences and biostudies/ Environment, Energy and Interdisciplinary Studies Regardless of the graduate schools/divisions you belong, you can apply for any disciplinary grouping.

You can choose only one disciplinary grouping.

Disciplinary grouping of the Fellowship

3.Early-offer category and regular category

The greatest mission for Kyoto University is to train excellent researchers and produce human resources who will lead the next generation of research and education in Japan. On the other hand, it is a big issue that the best-in-class students who are the candidates of world-leading researchers tend not to go on to the doctoral program and find a job at the end of the master’s program. Therefore, in order to eliminate financial anxiety and encourage students to go on to the doctoral program, it is important to guarantee financial support at an early stage of the master’s program and in the first place to encourage excellent students to enroll in the master’s program. Therefore, by establishing a “Early-offer category “, we aim at guaranteeing financial support at an early stage for “One talented person in 10 years” in various fields of the master’s program who can be a leading researcher in Japan or the world in the future, to promote their advancement to the doctoral program. After entering the university, we aim to create an environment where they can concentrate on their studies and research, and to steadily develop them as researchers.

SPRING program is operated being combined with JAPAN SOCIETY FOR PROMOTION OF SCIENCE Research Fellowship for Young Scientists, which highest -layer-students have been supported by. Successful candidates of ” Early-offer category ” are also encouraged to apply for JSPS Research Fellowship for Young Scientists, and if they are accepted as a JSPS Research Fellow, their reserved quota will be returned to the “regular category”, which will result in the increase of the number of the students who can receive the support.

We will support excellent students who are comparable to Research Fellowship for Young Scientists DC under a ” regular category ” and develop human resources who will lead not only as researchers but also in all fields of society including industry.

4.Eligibility to Apply

The types of students listed below are not eligible for support under this program.

  • Students selected for the JSPS Research Fellowship for Young Scientists
  • Students obtaining stable income through salary, executive remuneration, or the like from their affiliated university, company, etc., at a level sufficient to cover living expenses (2.4 million yen annually). (As income from paid internship, RA, TA, or part-time job is not regarded as stable income, such income is not subject to regulation based on the amount of income. However, if it interferes with research, career development or training content efforts., the support may not be continued. In addition, if you are earning more than 2.4 million yen annually by holding a post such as a non-regular employee or a temporary employee for some period of time, you are not eligible to apply for the program. This also applies to self-employed worker.)
  • International students supported by a Japanese Government Scholarship, a scholarship from their home country, or the like

If you are currently receiving a scholarship from a private scholarship foundation or have an offer of a scholarship from a private scholarship foundation, please be sure to confirm with that foundation if you are permitted to apply for the SPRING Program or Fellowship before applying, regardless of whether or not you are eligible to receive both scholarships concurrently. Failure to do so may result in the revocation of your scholarship from the private scholarship foundation or the SPRING Program or Fellowship.


Your selection under this program may be cancelled or support may be suspended temporarily if any of the following applies

  1. (i) Inadequate engagement with studies and/or research
  2. (ii) Withdrawal, suspension, or leave of absence from the doctoral program
  3. (iii)Subjection to disciplinary action under the Article 53 mutatis mutandis application of paragraph 1, Article 32 of the General Regulations of Kyoto University (Order No. 3 of 1953
  4. (iv)Other grounds judged by the program’s coordinators to warrant cancellation or temporary suspension.

6.Support Start Date

Support expires at the end of the standard period required for completion of your degree program: you will not receive support beyond this period. Also, any periods of absence from school are not eligible for support. However, if it becomes difficult to continue the research due to childbirth, childcare, injury or illness, etc., the support period may be suspended or extended according to individual circumstances.

As a result of the selection process, the period of support may be adjusted individually within the standard period required for completion of your degree program.

7.Value of Support

SPRING program:
Research incentive grant of 2.2 million yen per year (1.8 million yen for living expenses + 0.4 million yen for research expenses)

Research incentive grant of 2.1 million yen per year (1.8 million yen for living expenses + 0.3 million yen for research expenses)
(Part of the amount corresponding to living expenses may be paid as salary by employing the student as an RA.)


The selection process of the SPRING program involves a preliminary screening and a university-wide screening. The preliminary screenings will be conducted in the disciplinary groupings shown in the Appendix, with a focus on expertise and abilities in your area of disciplinary specialization. Those passing the preliminary screening will undergo a university-wide screening, which focuses on ambitious, integrative research plans and motivation with a capacity to address societal needs, regardless of the disciplinary area.
The selection of the Fellowship is conducted by the steering committee in each disciplinary grouping and the university-wide Fellowship Management Committee.

9.Take e-Learning Research Courses

Graduate students selected for the SPRING Program and Fellowships must take research ethics training “eAPRIN (formerly CITI)” and “Appropriate Use of Research Funds, etc.” on the Kyoto University e-learning training system.


Graduate students selected for SPRING program or Fellowship will be required by the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) or Kyoto University to cooperate with the matters shown below. Details will be provided to successful applicants at a later date./p>

①Participation in exchange meetings with other doctoral students

Doctoral students participating in this program will attend inter-university exchange meetings to inspire one another and form interpersonal networks through interaction with students at other universities.

②Student monitoring surveys

JST or MEXT will conduct direct follow-up activities with students receiving support under this program, as well as guaranteeing access for those students and soliciting their opinions directly. The results of these activities will be used directly in the evaluation of projects to support doctoral students.

③Evaluation of effectiveness and follow-up surveys

Follow-up surveys on the careers of program alumni will be conducted over a period of ten years or more, and the results provided to JST or MEXT.

11.Handling of Personal Information

The personal information contained in application documents will be managed strictly in accordance with the Kyoto University Regulations Concerning the Handling of Personal Information and used only to perform work pertaining to the screening of applicants for this program. Please be aware, however, that some personal information may be provided to other relevant departments within Kyoto University for verification purposes in the event that an applicant is selected to receive support from any of the other programs listed under “5. Eligibility to Apply.”
If you are selected for SPRING program or Fellowship, your personal information will be publicized to ensure appropriate transparency.

12.Publication of research outcomes

When presenting research results obtained through the SPRING Program, please indicate that the research was supported by the Program as demonstrated by the following example. This information is not required for the Fellowship.

SPRING program(Grant Number):JPMJSP2110
【En.】This work was supported by JST SPRING, Grant Number JPMJSP2110.
【Jp.】本研究は、JST 次世代研究者挑戦的研究プログラム JPMJSP2110 の支援を受けたものです。

When presenting research results obtained through the Fellowship, please indicate that the research was supported by the Program as demonstrated by the following example.

Fellowship(Grant Number): JPMJFS2123
【En.】This work was supported by JST, the establishment of university fellowships towards the creation of science technology innovation, Grant Number JPMJFS2123. 【Jp.】本研究はJST 科学技術イノベーション創出に向けた大学フェローシップ創設事業JPMJFS2123の支援を受けたものです。