The Mitacs-JSPS call for applications will be open from October 12 – November 12, 2020.



The Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program, offered in partnership with the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS), provides opportunities for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in Canada to pursue collaborative research in Japan. This program allows graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in Canada to advance their own research while promoting scientific progress in both Japan and Canada.

The call for applications will open on October 12, 2020, and close on November 12, 2020, at 5 p.m. PT. Results will be communicated in April. Applications are awarded competitively and subject to available funding.

Important: Projects must take place during the period set by the JSPS. The dates for the 2021 program are June 16 – August 18, 2021. More details can be found here. Note that dates are tentative and may be subject to change.

Please note that Canadian university professors are required to submit the complete Mitacs-JSPS application form to Mitacs before the deadline. If you are a student interested in applying for the Mitacs-JSPS summer program, you must find a professor at your home Canadian university who will need to obtain endorsement from the Canadian university before you start your application.

Contact international@mitacs.ca for more information.



Program at a glance

  • Open to: graduate students and postdoctoral fellows at Canadian universities in all disciplines
    • Participants must obtain their Canadian university’s endorsement (see the ‘How to Apply' tab for more details)
  • Citizenship: Canadian citizens and permanent residents
  • Funding: JSPS arranges round-trip airfare and insurance. Mitacs and JSPS provide an allowance for the student or postdoctoral fellow (equivalent to 534,000 yen in total). Host supervisors are eligible for a research support allowance.
  • Destination: universities and research institutes in Japan 
  • Project dates: June 16 – August 18, 2021. Dates are tentative and subject to change.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to read more about the program on the JSPS's website

The Mitacs-JSPS call for applications will be open from October 12 – November 12, 2020.



Professors at Canadian universities are asked to contact their local Business Development representative to obtain an application package.

The Mitacs-JSPS application package must include:

  • Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program Application Form
  • Research proposal
  • CV on Mitacs template
  • Letters of support from both participating professors. Both letters must:
    • Be written on university letterhead
    • Provide the supervisor’s title and department
    • Outline supervisory and/or financial support for the participant and project
    • Describe the participant's academic and research qualities, outstanding achievements, and ability to complete the project
  • Host supervisor’s CV in English or French, including funding history, publications, and graduate students supervised

How to apply:

  1. Review all eligibility and award guidelines
  2. Before you begin putting together an application, it is the responsibility of the academic supervisor at the Canadian university to obtain endorsement from their VPR. Canadian academic supervisors can contact their local Mitacs Business Development representative for more information on how to obtain their university's endorsement.  
  3. If the Canadian university’s VPR is supportive of this project, the Canadian university professor and/or student will need to identify a professor in Japan who works in the relevant research area. It is the responsibility of the participants to connect with one another. Mitacs cannot connect interested interns with supervisors. A list of eligible host institutions in Japan can be found on the JSPS website.
  4. Once the application is developed, the Canadian university’s VPR and Office of Research Services (or equivalent) will need to sign the application form.
  5. Collect all remaining required signatures on sections 6 and 7 of application form: participant, home supervising professor(s), and host supervising professor(s). Signatures can be electronic or a scanned image.
    1. Mitacs recommends allowing 1–2 weeks to secure university signatures and confirm internal deadlines; participants are responsible for confirming any applicable deadlines with their universities.
  6. The professor at the Canadian university must then submit the complete application package to your local Mitacs Business Development representative.
  7. Consult with your university’s international office to determine any requirements for travel and research abroad

Travel to the destination is not permitted prior to the approval of the award AND Mitacs’ receipt of the International Pre-departure and Code of Conduct and Ethics forms. Neither Mitacs nor its international partners are responsible for costs incurred before an application is approved.



What happens next

  1. Mitacs and JSPS will contact participants about their proposal outcomes in April. 
  2. If approved, the student or postdoc provides the completed Mitacs Code of Conduct and Ethics and International Pre-departure forms to Mitacs
  3. The student or postdoc departs to Japan and begins the research project 

Please note that awards are offered in partnership with Mitacs’s Canadian academic partners and with Mitacs’s international partners and are subject to available funding.

Participants

  • Cannot undertake a research project at an institution where they have previously completed a degree
  • Must be registered as full-time graduate students or postdoctoral fellows at a Canadian university and remain as such throughout the Mitacs-JSPS program. Postdoctoral fellows may apply if their date of graduation from a PhD program is no more than 5 years prior to the proposed start date of the research project
  • Must be the legal age of majority in Canada (18 years of age or older)
  • Must be Canadian citizens or Canadian permanent residents
  • Must meet travel requirements for their intended destination, including visa and/or immigration requirements and associated documentation
  • Must be new to the JSPS Summer Program
  • Cannot have previously held a Mitacs Globalink Research Award
  • Must be available to conduct the research project during the JSPS Summer Program dates (see Schedule on the JSPS website)

Home supervising professors

  • Must hold a faculty position at a Canadian university  
  • Must be eligible to supervise graduate students and hold Tri-Council funding
  • Must be available to supervise during the JSPS Summer Program dates (see Schedule on the JSPS website)

Host supervising professors

  • Must be a researcher who is employed full-time at a Japanese university or research institution. Eligible host institutions include:
    • Universities and inter-university research institutes
    • The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT)-affiliated institutes that conduct scientific research 
    • Other institutes designated by the Minister of MEXT
  • Must be available to supervise during the JSPS Summer Program dates (see Schedule on the JSPS website)

A list of eligible host institutions can be found on the JSPS website

For more details on eligible institutions, please visit the JSPS website or contact summer@jsps.go.jp

All parties involved with the Mitacs Globalink program must comply with the Canadian home university’s policies regarding the ethical conduct of research and scholarly activities. Any issues or disputes around research or academic misconduct will be subject to the home Canadian university’s processes following their institutional policies.

Participant’s responsibilities

  • Make all necessary preparations for travel abroad with the appropriate university office(s)
  • Obtain appropriate visa or work permit for the destination
  • Attend any mandatory sessions as required by the home university
  • Work full-time on the research project during the project dates set by the JSPS (see Schedule on the JSPS website)
  • Submit a final report and exit survey at the end of the project

Home supervisor’s responsibilities

  • Adhere to institutional policies for research abroad
  • Provide ongoing direction and research support to the participant prior to and during the research project
  • Submit an exit survey and sign the final report prepared by the participant

Host supervisor’s responsibilities

  • Adhere to institutional policies for visiting researchers 
  • Provide ongoing direction and research support to the participant prior to and during the research project
  • Advise the participant on appropriate travel arrangements and accommodation
  • Provide the participant with any necessary documentation to support the visa application
  • Ensure the participant has appropriate lab and/or office space and resources during the research project
  • Submit an exit survey and sign the final report prepared by the participant 

Adjudication

The Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program is competitive with limited awards available. All applications will undergo review by an interdisciplinary team. Proposals will be adjudicated based on the following criteria:

  • Quality of the research proposal
  • Level of supervision and mentorship committed by the host supervisor
  • Strength of recommendation by the home supervisor
  • Relevance to society and industry
  • Expected benefit to Canada

What is eligible research?

Funding

  • For each approved award, JSPS will provide:
    • Round-trip airfare. Flight arrangements are made by JSPS’s designated travel agent based on JSPS regulations.
    • Maintenance Allowance (534,000 yen, less $3,000 CAD from Mitacs paid to the Canadian home university), as well as hotel room charges at Narita and Tokyo, and meals and accommodation charges at SOKENDAI.
    • Insurance during participant's stay in Japan (full details provided to successful fellows in the JSPS acceptance package)
    • A research support allowance of up to 158,500 yen for the host supervisor’s research-related expenses.
  • No funds will be released if the completed International Pre-Departure Form and/or Mitacs Code of Conduct and Ethics forms are outstanding.

Travel to the destination prior to the approval of the award is not permitted and neither Mitacs nor JSPS is responsible for any costs incurred before the application is approved.

Deliverables

Before departing Japan, participants will be asked to submit a report on the research work they carried out under the Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program. JSPS will provide the report format and instructions directly to participants.

Participants are required to complete a post-program survey, which they’ll receive from JSPS.

Extension of the Program

  • With approval of the host researcher, a participant's stay in Japan may be extended to a total of 90 days inclusive of the two months of the program.
    • The maintenance allowance will not be paid during the extended period before or after the fellowship tenure.
    • If the participant's stay exceeds 90 days, his/her return or roundtrip air ticket will be cancelled.  
    • Participants who change the length of their stay must inform both JSPS and Mitacs.

Before you apply

I am an undergraduate student, am I eligible to participate in the Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program?
No. The Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program is only open to graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.

Are postdoctoral fellows eligible for a Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program?
Yes, if they received their PhD within five years of the program start date.

When can I conduct a Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program research project? 
Projects must take place during the dates set by the JSPS. These change slightly from year-to-year. For summer 2021, program dates are June 16 – August 18. Please see the Schedule section of the JSPS website for more information. If dates for next summer are not there, it is because the schedule has not been finalized. We encourage you to check back regularly. 

Does my Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program research project have to be a certain length?
Projects must match the dates set by the JSPS. The project length will be approximately 10 weeks. Please see the Schedule section of the JSPS website for more information.
  
Which disciplines are eligible for the Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program?
The Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program is open to all disciplines.

Which universities and research institutions are eligible to host a project? 
A list of eligible host institutions in Japan can be found on the JSPS website. For more details, contact summer@jsps.go.jp.
  
Can professors from any Canadian university support a Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program participant?
Yes, provided they are a faculty member at the same Canadian university as the intern.

Can professors from any university in Japan host a Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program participant?
Host academic supervisors must be full-time researchers at a Japanese university or research institution. Eligible host institutions include:  

  • Universities and inter-university research institutes
  • The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT)-affiliated institutes that conduct scientific research
  • Other institutes designated by the Minister of MEXT

A list of eligible host institutions can be found on the JSPS website. For more details, contact summer@jsps.go.jp.  

Is a postdoctoral fellow eligible to support a Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program participant as a home academic supervisor?
No. The home academic supervisor must be a faculty member at a Canadian university.

Does JSPS provide funding for the host academic supervisor?
A research support allowance of up to 158,500 yen is available to the host supervisor for the purpose of covering research-related expenses.

What status will I have at my home university while I am in my host country?
All participants should maintain full-time student or postdoc status at their home university in Canada during their time abroad.

Who owns any intellectual property generated during the course of a research project? 
The participant, host supervisor, home supervisor, and host institute should negotiate and establish an agreement in advance. Students are advised to confirm in advance the rules and regulations governing patents and other intellectual property rights on research results obtained in Japan during their internship.
When applying for patents or other intellectual property rights, participants should first notify their host institute’s administrative office that (1) they intend to make such application and (2) the subject research was conducted under the Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program.

Preparing your application

I am a student who is interested in taking part in the Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program. Can Mitacs help me find a host academic supervisor? 
Participants are responsible for identifying a host academic supervisor. As a starting point, we suggest speaking with your home academic supervisor to assist you in this search.

What should my supervisors include in their letters of support? 
Each letter of support should be written on university letterhead and signed by the supervisor. It should include the supervisor’s contact details, including title, department affiliation, and university or institute, in English or French. The letter should outline the supervisor’s support for the participant and the research project and describe the participant's academic and research qualities and ability to complete the project.

After you apply

I applied for the Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program. When will I receive my results? 
Outcome letters will be issued in April. Mitacs issues award letters after the participant has provided their International Pre-Departure and Code of Conduct forms and confirmed their project dates. 

Can my outcome letter be issued before April? 
No. Outcome letters for the Mitacs-JSPS Summer Program cannot be issued early. We apologize for any inconvenience and we thank you for your patience. 

Will I receive my Mitacs funds before my departure? 
We cannot guarantee that you will receive your funds before your departure, as this depends on processing times at Mitacs and at your university, and on how quickly you return your acceptance, Pre-Departure and Code of Conduct forms to Mitacs. Please note that we do our best to ensure all awards are paid in a timely manner, and we do prioritize based on project start date. 

How will I receive my Mitacs funds? 
The Mitacs portion of the award will be issued to you via your Canadian university’s Office of Research Services (or equivalent). Once you provide Mitacs with your acceptance, Pre-Departure and Code of Conduct forms, we will send the funds to your Canadian university. Your university will set up an account in your home supervisor’s name. How the funds will be provided to you – e.g. up front, or by reimbursement – and when will depend on how you classify them in your application form (see Section 3 – Budget) and on your university’s policies. If you have any questions about your award after Mitacs has released funds, Mitacs (international@mitacs.ca) can provide you with contact information to learn more about your university’s processes. 

How and when will I receive the JSPS portions of the award? 
Please see the Funding section under the Award Guidelines tab for more detail about what the award includes. For details about the JSPS portions of the award, please visit their website or contact them at summer@jsps.gp.jp if you cannot find the information you are looking for online.