On August 29, Kyoto University European Center (KUEC) held an online orientation session for early career researchers (ECR) on the JSPS Overseas Fellowship Program to support their research stay at the Grantham Research Institute (Imperial College London).
This program was accomplished with the cooperation of the Grantham Institute, which conducts a wide range of climate change-related research. URAs (University Research Administrators) match ECRs with host institutions and support them to develop a convincing research plans, which is a requirement for application. This elevates the chances to get selected in later parts of the application processes.
Over 20 ECR’s attended this event. None of them had a previous relationship to Imperial College London. The wide attention for this event was accomplished thanks to the successful publicity by the Graduate School Support Organization.
After an opening address by Prof. Mika Yokoyama (Director of KUEC), Taro Sonobe (URA) gave an explanation of the system and the details of support. During the Q&A session, the enthusiastic participants asked specific questions about their housing situation in London, its Japanese community, and career options after their research stay.
Finally, Dr. Bahareh Kamranzad (Assistant Professor at the Hakubi Center, Kyoto University), who is currently staying at the Grantham Research Institute as a visiting researcher, served as a bridge between the two institutions. She told the young researchers: “Don’t be afraid of failure. I have four times as many failure stories as success stories.“
The URA are involved in all aspects of the project, from the online meeting with the institute director, the subsequent coordination, to finalizing the details of the application forms. We will continue to support ECRs to apply successfully in this program and in a variety of other ways beyond.