The PhD programme in Sustainability Science is a three-year programme that aims to produce scholars who will become key researchers in the field of sustainability science. The programme takes an innovative approach to sustainability, seeking to promote a better understanding of the issues by incorporating global change perspectives, specifically those related to climate change and biodiversity.
The programme will equip graduates with comprehensive, multidisciplinary knowledge of sustainability problems, and deepen their understanding of the role of environmental sustainability in addressing current issues related to global change. The programme provides students with unique opportunities to interact with leading scholars and policymakers through lectures, international conferences, and workshops. Students undertake problem-oriented research by playing an active role in UNU-IAS research projects, and acquire the quantitative and qualitative analytical skills necessary to understand the underlying principles of various systems involved in sustainability issues and debates. Through coursework and research, PhD students gain critical thinking and problem-solving skills, as well as the technical literacy required to address sustainability problems.
The programme starts in September, and by July of their third year students are expected to complete all of the course requirements, obtaining at least 14 credits. Students can select courses from those offered by UNU-IAS, while also enjoying the opportunity to take courses at other leading universities in Japan such as the University of Tokyo, Sophia University, International Christian University, and Yokohama National University.
Applicants for the PhD in Sustainability Science are required to have met ALL of the following requirements by the application deadline in order to be considered:
1. A strong interest in sustainability studies;
2. A demonstrated commitment to study and understand global issues;
3. A completed Master’s degree in disciplines related to sustainability studies and a minimum of 2 years of practical field experience related to UNU-IAS research themes which was acquired after obtaining a university degree
Two completed Master’s degrees, at least one of which must be in a discipline related to sustainability studies;
*Those who expect to receive a second Master’s degree before the entrance period – September 2018 – may also apply.
4. A GPA of 3.5 or above on a 4.0 scale for at least one of the Master’s degrees earned; and
5. English language proficiency
The minimum score requirements for English language qualifications required by UNU-IAS are:
- 600 on TOEFL – Paper-Based Testing (PBT) OR
- 100 on TOEFL – Internet-Based Testing (IBT) OR
- 7.0 on IELTS – Academic format
Applicants, except for the cases below, must submit original TOEFL or IELTS score reports (from a test taken within the last two years) to the Admissions Office at the time of application:
- Applicants whose native language is English.
- Applicants who graduated from a university or a postgraduate school located in an English speaking country.
- Applicants who completed an undergraduate or postgraduate degree programme where the language of instruction and examination was English. In this case, an official statement from the academic institution will be required, confirming the use of English as the language of instruction and examination.
UNU-IAS requires original TOEFL/IELTS score reports (no photocopies accepted).
Scholarships provided through the Japan Foundation for UNU (JFUNU)
The JFUNU scholarship provides a monthly allowance of 120,000 JPY* for living expenses for a maximum of 36 months. However, travel costs to and from Japan, visa handling fees, and health/accident insurance costs must be covered by the student. The tuition fees are fully waived for the scholarship recipients.
*The amount of monthly allowance has been changed to 120,000 JPY effective 2017.
- Applicants must be from developing countries* who can demonstrate a need for financial assistance.
- Applicants who are currently living in Japan under a working visa are NOT eligible for the scholarship.
- Applicants who want to pursue a second PhD degree at UNU-IAS are not eligible for the scholarship.
*Developing countries included in the latest OECD DAC list.
Application Deadline: 27 April 2018
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