Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies Postdoctoral Fellowships



***Applicant Deadline: December 15, 2023 (Friday), 5:00pm EST***
***Recommender Deadline: January 5, 2024 (Friday), 5:00pm EST***

Please note: The applicant and recommender deadlines were separated due to the nature of the ARIeS online system. Only after the application is submitted will the recommender be notified of the recommendation letter request. Applicants, to ensure a smooth process, please communicate with your recommenders in advance of the first deadline on December 15.

The Edwin O. Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies (RIJS) at Harvard University will offer several Postdoctoral Fellowships in Japanese Studies to recent PhD graduates of exceptional promise, to provide the opportunity for postdoctoral fellows to turn their dissertations into publishable manuscripts and to continue their research in Japanese studies.


Year-long appointments, commencing August or September 2024.


  • Stipend of $67,000; eligibility for university subsidized health insurance; and up to $5,000 in research funds.
  • Postdoctoral fellows will be provided office space, as well as access to the libraries and resources of Harvard University.


Postdoctoral fellows are expected to reside in the Cambridge area during the appointment term and participate in RIJS activities and events. Postdoctoral fellows will also be expected to give a presentation at the RIJS Japan Forum lecture series.


Applicants must have received their PhD in 2019 or later, in Japanese studies, in any area of the humanities or social sciences. RIJS especially encourages applications from those who have not previously held postdoctoral appointments at Harvard. Those who are selected to receive fellowships must have a Registrar-certified PhD degree by June 30, 2024. Please note that the fellowship is contingent upon degree documentation and is subject to rescission if the deadline is not met.


The postdoctoral fellowship application is available on the Harvard University ARIeS (Academic Recruiting Information eSystem).


The application has three main components.

Personal Information

  • Candidate Information
  • Contact Information
  • Sponsorship: Will you now or in the future require visa sponsorship?
  • Educational Background


Two reference letters are required. On your online application, two reference entries must be created. Once your application is submitted by the applicant deadline December 15, 2023 (Friday), ARIeS will automatically generate reference solicitation emails to your recommenders. Reference letters must be submitted by the recommender deadline January 5, 2024 (Friday). Your application will not be considered complete until all materials are received.

Supplemental Questions

  • Please state your thesis title.
  • Have you previously applied for any postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard? If yes, which and when?
  • Have you previously received any postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard or elsewhere? If yes, which and when?
  • Are you currently applying for other postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard or elsewhere? If yes, which?
  • Please provide a short summary of your research plan at Harvard. (200 words)
  • Please indicate your current employment status and institution. (e.g. graduate student/PhD candidate; postdoctoral fellow; non-tenure track position; tenure-track position; currently job searching)

University Voluntary Demographic Questions

  • Self-Identification of Protected Veteran Status
  • Self-Identification of Disability
  • Other Demographic Questions

You may opt out of any or all of these questions on ARIeS.

Required Documents

Please upload each of the following required documents to your application.

  1. Statement of Research (2 pages): What research do you plan to pursue during the fellowship term? What do you plan to do at each stage, and what particular resources do you intend to use? What are the advantages of spending a postdoctoral fellowship year at Harvard; are there specific individuals or resources you hope to seek out while in residence?
  2. Curriculum Vitae: Please include your citizenship, current and permanent addresses, telephone number(s), email address; academic degrees with dates of conferral, discipline and institution; current employer; and a list of publications.
  3. Transcript: Please submit an official electronic transcript or OPEN your official paper transcript to scan as part of your complete application. **If your PhD comes from a non-US university that does not issue an official transcript of grades, please submit alternative documentation of your enrollment and progress in the degree program, as well as a written statement that you are unable to provide an official transcript of grades.
  4. Dissertation Abstract (1 page)
  5. Dissertation Table of Contents
  6. Dissertation Chapter: We will also accept a published article submitted in lieu of the dissertation chapter as a writing sample.


***Applicant Deadline: December 15, 2023 (Friday), 5:00pm EST***

***Recommender Deadline: January 5, 2024 (Friday), 5:00pm EST***

Award Announcement: March 2024

Please direct inquiries to:



Application date
1 year
Social sciences