Japan: JDS Human Development Scholarships 2024/2025 for Graduate Kenyans

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JDS is now inviting potential applicants who understand its aims and are interested in 2 (two) year master / 3 (three) year doctoral degree program at Japanese accepting universities for the academic year 2024-2025. Apply below.

When is Application Deadline:

8th March 2024

Tell Me About Award:

The Project for Human Resource Development Scholarship (JDS) has been started in Kenya since 2020. Up to the present, total of 29 MA and 2 Ph.D. fellows have been sent to Japan.

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Master, PhD

Who can Apply?


NationalityCitizens of Kenya
AgeBelow the age of 40 as of April 1st, 2024 (=Born on/after April 2, 1984)
(* Below the age of 45 for the central government who have experienced/will involve in policy making and evaluation process.)
OccupationPublic Servants at Target Organization
Work ExperienceApplicants must have both of following experiences;Currently employed in the Target Organizations as a permanent and pensionable employee
(Except contract staff).Required at least 2 (two) years of work experience as public servants including a period of probation as a permanent and pensionable employee at the time of application (Part time jobs and volunteer activities are not counted as work experience).
Possess a Bachelor’s degree from universities authorized by the Government of Kenya or other countries.16 years of formal education is required (in principle), however, relevant academic/research career or working experience can be considered as the alternative to meet the requirement.English Proficiency: IELTS 6.0 or higher is preferable (not required)
Health ConditionMentally and physically in good health.
Note: Applicants need to take and pass all medical check-up prior to the technical interview. This medical check-up is arranged by JDS Project Office. Applicant who cannot take or pass all medical check-up will be disqualified from JDS scholarship.
OthersCandidate has to understand the condition of the scholarship of JDS program, and must return and work in their organization in order to make a contribution to the development of Kenya and be willing to contribute to the partnership of Kenya and Japan.Applicants are expected to have special interest in studying in Japan as well as motivation to utilize their experience and human network developed through JDS in their careerFemale officers are encouraged to apply.
IneligibilityA person falls under the following items is not eligible for applyThose who are currently receiving (or is scheduled to receive) another scholarship (including other scholarships of Japan).Those who have obtained a master’s or higher degrees overseas under the support of foreign scholarship.Military personnel and military civilian employees registered on the active list, and also personnel on temporary leave from the active list


The applicant must;

  1. Have a citizenship of Kenya
  2. Obtained Master’s degree
  3. Below the age of 45 (as of April 1st, 2024)
  4. Belong to the Target Organizations of JDS Project and affiliated organization, and his/her research theme is relevant to the Development Issues of Kenya. ※See the table below.
  5. Required at least 2 (two) years of work experience as public servants including a period of probation as a permanent and pensionable employee at the time of application (Part time jobs and volunteer activities are not counted as work experience)
  6. Submit a recommendation from the supervisor of his/her current duty office. (Reference Letter should contain evaluation of applicant’s performance at work and relevance of his/her research theme to his/her career.)
  7. Submit a recommendation from the expected academic adviser(s) of the applying any university in Japan. (Submission of a draft academic guidance outline or a supervisory plan is desirable.)
    ※This letter does not necessarily guarantee the acceptance by the university, but to confirm qualification to pursue PhD.
  8. Not have obtained any Doctor’s degree overseas under other foreign donors.
  9. Not be currently awarded or to be awarded a scholarship from other foreign donors
  10. For former recipients of foreign scholarships, applicant must have spent required years written in Training bond at his/her workplace, since the applicants finished Master and returned to the workplace.
  11. In principle, have published at least one peer-reviewed article/ paper*.
    * The following applicants are included under the requirement:
    1. )an applicant who has a prospect for publication of a peer-reviewed article/ paper.
    2. )an applicant who has a concrete plan to publish a peer-reviewed article in an academic journal in collaboration with his/her intended faculty supervisor.

【Other Conditions】
The applicant must;

  1. Present a research proposal relevant to the Development Issues of their country referred to in the framework of Sub-Programs and Components.
  2. Have fulfilled the work obligation stipulated in the Training Bond. An applicant must work in his/her country with the ruled of the Government of Kenya after return.
  3. Be in good health both physically and mentally.
  4. Complete the course within, and not exceeding, three (3) years. However, if it is judged that the Doctoral degree is likely to be obtained, the extension up to 6 months will be accepted.
  5. Must not be serving in the military.

How Many Awards?

The number of dispatches is 13(12 MA and 1 Ph.D.) per year.

What is the Benefit of Award?

  • All the selection costs will be covered by JDS Project.
  • Limited transportation and accommodation allowance will be provided to candidates coming from provincial areas for the selections.

How to Apply:


Submit your application through Online Application System.
For more details, refer to “3. How to Apply”


  1. Application Guideline
  2. Application Documents

Online Application System


Please refer to the Application Guideline and submit a full set of application documents by the deadline.


  1. Application Guideline
  2. Application Documents

Visit Award Webpage for Details