About This Program

Proposals for Open Application Program are still accepted. However, due to the spread of Covid-19 and the policy of Japanese government, JST has not been implementing invitation programs.

We invite young talented people from other countries and regions to Japan through Sakura Science Exchange Program in a collaboration of industry-academia-government, to introduce and offer experience in Japanese science and technology. Beginning in 2014, and for a period of 6 years, over 33,000 young people visited Japan on this program.

Message from Director-General

Kishi Teruo, Director-General

In order to create a sustainable world for the future, it is extremely important for countries and regions around the world to understand each other's situations and differences, build a sense of mutual trust, and realize social changes through science, technology and innovation. Japan's science and technology, through the great and many efforts of our predecessors has also played a role in creating leading-edge and ground-breaking results and in driving the world’s economy and society.

However, in the field of science and technology, I think that the recognition that Japan is a member of the world was somewhat weak. From this perspective, I believe that in the future, from a more global perspective, it is important strongly to support excellent young people who are eager to take charge of the next generation in their choosing the path of science and technology, or in promoting innovation that fit the realities of their respective countries and regions.

In 2014, JST began the Sakura Science Program. This program is designed to invite young people from countries and regions to Japan for a short period of time, and to allow them to come into contact with leading-edge science and technology and Japanese culture, and to provide them with opportunities to understand each other and to build strong relationships through interaction with young people in Japan.

To date, more than 33,000 young people have been invited to Japan on this program. This program has received high praise from universities, research institutes, municipalities and private companies in and outside of Japan. However, in order to cope with various circumstances surrounding science and technology and rapidly evolving international trends, and further to develop the program, we have decided to expand the target of our invitations to all countries and regions in principle, as well as to cover the humanities and the social sciences. Furthermore, we plan to respond to the global spread of COVID-19 and the advent of a digital society. We will also actively engage in online exchanges. 2021 is a major transitional period for the Sakura Science Program. It is also considered to be a developmental period.

The foundation of all of our activities is to build trust and deepen mutual understanding based on the interaction between people. We are convinced that the Sakura Science Program will make a significant contribution toward that goal. We strongly hope that young people around the world who have great hope and want to challenge the future will find out about Japan through the Sakura Science Program and will use this opportunity to take a big leap forward.

Purposes of Sakura Science Exchange Program

By exchanging ideas in the field of science and technology among the participants of Sakura Science Program, we pursue:

  • - Support the development of talented people overseas who have the potential to contribute to innovation in science and technology; and support continuous interaction between Japan and other countries and regions.
  • - Promote globalization of Japanese educational and research institutes
  • - Strengthen good relationship between Japan and other countries and regions And ultimately we pursue the development of science and technology in Japan and worldwide.

Eligibility Criteria for Sakura Science Exchange Program

Students, researchers and others engaged in science and technology who are 40 years old or younger from all countries and regions

Two Programs of Sakura Science Exchange Program

Features How to Apply Invitation Period
Open Application Program JST supports the necessary expenses for the programs selected as Open Application Program. Overseas and Japanese organizations jointly plan the program, and the Japanese organization sends applications to JST within the designated period. Seven days to three weeks
JST Direct Invitation Program JST plans the programs and implements the programs as a host organization. Not open for public application Seven days

Open Application Program

Due to the spread of Covid-19 and the policy of Japanese government, JST has not been implementing invitation programs. For general information on Open Application Program, please click here.

Three Kinds of Open Application Programs
Course A: Science and Technology Experience Course
Foreign youth participate in science and technology exchange programs arranged by host organizations in Japan. The period of stay is limited to 7 days. The number of people who can be invited is limited to ten per sending organization, and 15 in case of the invitation from multiple sending organizations (supervisors are excluded in both cases).
Course B: Collaborative Research Activities Course
Foreign youth participate in short term joint research programs arranged by host organizations in Japan. The period of stay is limited to 3 weeks. The number of people who can be invited is basically limited to ten (supervisors are excluded).
Course C: Science and Technology Training Course
Foreign youth participate in converged training to acquire specific technique and skills related to science and technology arranged by the host organizations. The period of stay is limited to 10 days. The number of people who can be invited is limited to 15 per country or region, and 25 from multiple countries and regions (supervisors are excluded in both cases).
Procedure to Implement a Program
Results of Selection
FY2014 FY2015 FY2016 FY2017 FY2018 FY2019 Total
Applied programs 574 636 631 608 688 704 3,841
Selected programs 283 391 454 492 502 557 2,679
List of Participated Organizations

 The organizations that have implemented the Open Application programs can be viewed as followed:

JST Direct Invitation Program

 There are two kinds of programs which JST plans and implements as a host organization.

SAKURA SCIENCE High School Program

 Excellent high school students from overseas countries and regions are invited to experience science and technology in Japan

SAKURA SCIENCE Supporters Program

 Foreign experts in the field of science and technology or education, who are engaged in implementation of Sakura Science Exchange Program are invited to Japan to experience Japanese cutting-edge science and technology, as well as science and technology administration.

 Please check here for details.

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