General information

Daiwa Scholarship

The Daiwa Scholarship is a unique 19-month programme of language study, work placement and homestay in Japan, following a month of Japanese language tuition in the UK. Daiwa Scholarships offer young and talented UK citizens with strong leadership potential, the opportunity to acquire Japanese language skills, and to access expertise and knowledge relevant to their career goals.

The selected Daiwa Scholars will undertake a month of Japanese language study in the UK during August 2016 before moving to Japan in mid-September 2016 for the remainder of the Scholarship.

No previous experience of Japan or Japanese is necessary. 

As of May 2015, 153 Daiwa Scholars – including scientists, artists, academics, lawyers and architects – will have benefited from the Daiwa Scholarships.

Daiwa Scholarships are provided by the Foundation to encourage better understanding between both countries.

You can find a link to the Daiwa Scholarship flyer here.

You can listen to an interview between 2014 Daiwa Scholar, Freyja Sewell, and the BBC’s Dan Damon on the World Service’s World Update via the link below:

Freyja Sewell interview with Dan Damon on World Update, BBC World Service, MP3 file

The closing date for the 2016 programme will be Thursday 3 December 2015.

The link to the online application notes and form can be found here.

The Foundation is also happy to provide advice about possible applications – please contact


Daiwa Scholarships last approximately 20 months, starting in August and finishing at the end of March.

The selected Daiwa Scholars undertake a month-long Japanese language course in the UK in August and then move to Japan for the rest of the Scholarship in mid-September. There is also a short orientation on arrival in Tokyo.

LANGUAGE STUDY (Months 1-12)

Language Training in the UK prior to departure for Japan (new from 2015)

The selected Daiwa Scholars will undertake a one-month period of Japanese language study in the UK during August before moving to Japan in mid-September for the remainder of the Scholarship.

All Daiwa Scholars will then undertake intensive Japanese language study at the Tokyo School of the Japanese Language, known also as the Naganuma School, and complementary communication classes. After 15 months, they are expected to reach an upper-intermediate level of language ability and are encouraged to sit Level N2 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT).

Level N2 is the second most advanced stage in the JLPT and is a challenging but achievable objective. To attain Level N2, candidates must demonstrate an understanding of a high level of grammar, kanji (Chinese characters), vocabulary and the ability to converse, read and write about matters of a general nature.

SEMINARS (Months 3-4)
A series of weekly seminars in English are held for Daiwa Scholars at Hosei University in Tokyo. These are designed to give Scholars an introduction to Japanese life, culture and society.

HOMESTAY (Month 14/15)
Daiwa Scholars spend one month with a family outside Tokyo at the end of the first year to improve their language ability and to enhance their understanding of Japan.

WORK PLACEMENTS (Months 15-20)
The Foundation arranges individual work placements appropriate to each Daiwa Scholar’s career goals. Previous Daiwa Scholars have been based at organisations including government ministries, NGOs, universities, think-tanks, media companies, architecture practices and law firms. A high standard of Japanese is essential to benefit from a successful work placement.

Completion of the programme is marked by a graduation ceremony in Tokyo at which each graduating Scholar gives a short speech in Japanese. Scholars then automatically become members of the Daiwa Scholars Alumni Association.

Naganuma School (external link)

JLPT (external link)

Hosei University (external link)


Candidates for the Daiwa Scholarships must be:

- British citizens

- aged between 21 and 35 years of age by the time of departure.

Candidates should be:

- graduates or due to graduate by the time of departure

- equipped with a strong degree in any subject* or with a strong record of achievement in their field

- in possession of clear career objectives and a commitment to furthering UK-Japan links.

*Graduates in Japanese language studies are not eligible to apply for Daiwa Scholarships but may wish to apply for support through the Foundation’s grant schemes.


The Foundation meets all tuition and examination fees associated with the Scholarship.

Daiwa Scholars receive a maintenance grant for the duration of the Scholarship which is to cover accommodation and living costs for a single person. While on the programme, Scholars may not undertake remunerated work

The Foundation meets the cost of economy-class travel to and from Japan at the beginning and end of the Scholarship.

For their first weeks in Japan, Daiwa Scholars are accommodated in a hotel in central Tokyo. During this period, they will look for rented apartments in which they will live for the remainder of the Scholarship.

All Daiwa Scholars contribute to the compulsory Japanese Government Health Scheme from their maintenance. In addition, the Foundation provides standard medical insurance for Daiwa Scholars while they are in Japan on the programme.

University Visits

Representatives of the Foundation and members of the Daiwa Scholars Alumni Association will be giving hour-long presentations at universities around the country during Autumn 2016.

Monday 12 October 2015, 1pm
Room G03, University of Birmingham Business School
More info:

Tuesday 13 October 2015, 12.00 pm
6.211 University Place
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Wednesday 14 October 2015, 1pm-2pm,
following a Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) presentation
Auditorium 2.18, School of Modern Languages
More info:

Thursday 15 October 2015, 11:30am-12:30pm,
preceding a Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) presentation
Seminar Room 2, Careers and Employability Centre, Library
More info:

Tuesday 20 October 2015, 12.00 pm
Careers Seminar Room
More info:

UEA Careers Fair
Thursday 22 October 2015, 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Congregation Hall
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Tuesday 27 October 2015; 1.00 pm
3.17 Seminar Room, 3rd Floor, Main Library Building, George Square
More info:

Imperial College
Thursday 29 October 2014, 1.00-1:50 pm
G34 Sir Alexander Fleming Building, Lecture Theatre 2
More info:

Thursday 29 October 2015, 5:30pm to 6:30,
followed by a JET Programme talk
Rooms 2 & 3, Careers Service, Tyndall Avenue
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Monday 2 November 2015, 1.00 pm
Mill Lane, Careers Centre
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Monday 2 November 2015, 1:00 pm
Room CM221
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Monday 2 November 2015, 6:00pm
D/L/006 in Derwent College
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Tuesday 3 November 2015, 6:00pm
Rootes Conference Suite
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Tuesday 3 November, 1:15 pm
Careers Service, 56 Banbury Road
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Thursday 5 November 2015, 1.00 pm
Generic talk about “working and living in Japan”
Wharfedale Room, Careers Centre
More info:

SOAS, University of London
Monday 9 November 2015, 5:30pm to 7:00pm (Daiwa Scholarships and Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme presentations &

Thursday 12 November 2015, 5:30pm to 7:30pm
Finding Funding Opportunities – focusing on Daiwa Scholarships, Japanese Government (MEXT) Scholarships and others
More info:

Bath University
Thursday 12 November 2015, 1;15pm to 2:05pm
Room/Venue to be confirmed
More info:

Tuesday 17 November 2015, 1.00 pm
Careers and Employability Service, Level D, Portland Building
More info: 

NEW TIMEThursday 19 November 2015, 12:00pm 
LTD Hicks Building
More info: