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Reference Materials on Support for
Younger Scholars

One of Toyo Bunko’s major goals is to effectively use its valuable collection of materials on Asian Studies collected over its first 100 years to contribute to the education and development of the next generation of younger scholars. Through this work, we believe the next generation will become leaders in the world academic community and will develop the skills to undertake self-initiated research work.

JSPS Post-doctoral Fellows

Toyo Bunko actively recruits young scholars who have received post-doctoral grants from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS). The JSPS program, which is open to young scholars within five years of completion of the PhD degree, supports fellows who must affiliate with a research organization other than the institution where they earned their PhD degree. As post-doc research fellows, they devote full-time to innovative research activities on themes or questions of their own choice. Experienced researchers on the staff of the affiliated institution provide research support and advice to the post-doc fellows.

Toyo Bunko Special Research Fellows

Special Research Fellows are selected from among the young scholars who are members of Toyo Bunko Research Groups who are within ten years of earning their PhD degree. Those selected are eligible to apply for research funds from JSPS, as well as from funds administered by Toyo Bunko including the Shiba Research Fund, the Makihara Research Fund (each of which provides ¥500,000 a year). They are also given free access to the research areas of Toyo Bunko as well as the right to freely enter the book stacks. Through this program young researchers benefit from the practical advice and guidance of scholars in their research group, facilitating  Toyo Bunko’s contributions to the advancement of the younger scholars’ careers, providing both training and material support for research.

Toyo Bunko Part-time Employment Opportunities

In addition to hosting JSPS post-doc fellows and Toyo Bunko Special Research Fellows, Toyo Bunko also offers opportunities to young scholars to serve as contract researchers. Those who are employed through this program use their specialized skills to participate in Toyo Bunko research projects; young researchers in this category have access to the Toyo Bunko stacks and research rooms and are eligible to apply for research funds from JSPS. Young scholars hired as contract researchers have an opportunity to build their careers through participation in the research activities of research groups in their specialized fields. Once their term as a contract researcher comes to an end, the young researcher can become a regular affiliated researcher and continue to use Toyo Bunko as a research base.

Gaining Research Management Experience through Participation in Toyo Bunko Activities

Young researchers who are employed in the above categories have an important opportunity to build research management skills through their participation in various Toyo Bunko activities. Young scholars, through their participation in different projects, develop skills to manage international collaboration projects. They also learn editorial skills through work with Toyo Bunko journals including Tōyō Gakuhō, and the Memoirs of the Research Department of the Toyo Bunko, and polish their data management skills through work categorizing materials added to the library collections, and through work on developing and maintaining digital databases. Through participation in Toyo Bunko projects, they not only develop their own technical skills, but also are able to build networks with researchers in Japan and overseas and benefit from opportunities to make research presentations.

Providing Opportunities to Present Research

To aid the development of these skills, Toyo Bunko regularly invites the young researchers employed in the various statuses mentioned above to participate in “Toyo Bunko Colloquium” where they have an opportunity to present their research and receive questions from scholars affiliated with Toyo Bunko, as well as scholars from other research organizations.

Support for International Collaborations

Toyo Bunko offers various forms of support for young researchers.
To aid young researchers in presenting their research results to international audiences, we invite overseas lecturers to provide instruction on improving English writing skills for publication.
Toyo Bunko has an agreement with the Harvard Yenching Institute and through that agreement young scholars affiliated with Toyo Bunko can take advantage of various HYI programs for young scholars.
In 2022, Toyo Bunko received a gift from the family of Makihara Ben (1930-2020), former Chairman of the Board, to establish a special fund that provides grants for young scholars to undertake research at institutions with which Toyo Bunko has international collaboration grants. The fund offers grants for short-term overseas trips to do documentary research, field research, and international exchange.