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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

US-Japan Policy

October Funding Cycle
By July 15Suggested submission date for Letters of InquiryPlease note that in spite of this deadline, applicants are encouraged to submit a Letter of Inquiry as early as practicably possible for review. We are unable to guarantee that those submitted close to the deadline will be reviewed and they may have to wait for the next cycle.
July 15-July 31Letters of Inquiry will be reviewed and responses sent as soon as possible.
August 31Deadline for receipt of Full Proposal (only invited full proposals will be considered)
SeptemberInternal / External review of Full Proposals
OctoberUSJF Board of Trustees meet to review Full Proposals, make funding decisions
NovemberFunding decisions announced

US-Japan Policy

Throughout our 20-year history, the Foundation has supported a variety of policy-related studies, initiatives and exchanges in pursuit of our mission: to promote stronger ties between the United States and Japan through greater mutual knowledge and understanding, to increase broad awareness of important policy issues, and to address common concerns in the Asia-Pacific region through the US-Japan perspective.

The Foundations Policy Program is one category of our grant-making activity. The other two categories are: 1) pre-college education; and 2)communication / public opinion. To see examples of recent grant activity click here.

The Foundation is constantly reviewing the relevance and effectiveness of our Programs. The most recent articulation of our vision for the Policy Program follows below (updated December 14, 2000):

1. The US-Japan Foundation emphasizes research over dialogue.
Although the Foundation recognizes that frank and frequent dialogue among US-Japan policymakers and specialists is important for the bilateral relationship, we favor proposals containing a strong original research component. Research has a broad meaning in this context. It often includes a structured analysis of data or policies that yields a publishable result and makes a contribution to the body of evidence in support of viable solutions to problems of common US-Japan interest. It could also include visiting fellowships in particular policy areas, study groups or other formats. Collaboration between US and Japanese institutions is encouraged.

2. We look for lasting impact and practical relevance to US-Japan policymakers.
The Foundation favors projects that offer practical tools and information of lasting value to policymakers for current and emerging US-Japan-related issues. There is an important balance to be struck between idealistic, long-term planning approaches and the development of practical, short-term policy recommendations.

3. We wish to encourage growth, education and interaction of younger scholars and policymakers in both countries.
The goals are to invest in the future leaders of our bilateral relationship and to inject the younger generations outlook and ideas into current policy debates. The Foundation is always looking for opportunities to help build institutional and human links between American and Japanese organizations.

4. We wish to maintain a diverse giving pattern and disseminate results widely.
The Foundation gives to a variety of US and Japanese institutions in different regions and disseminating project results broadly to policymakers and the general public in both countries (or third countries as appropriate).

5. The Foundation is primarily interested in investing for the long term, as opposed to addressing the "issue of the moment". Areas of current interest are:

· Managing Globalization - despite the potential benefits of growing economic integration in the Asia-Pacific region, adverse externalities are likely unless effectively planned for and mitigated. The issues are both technical (harmonization of rules and standards, developing efficient and impartial structures for oversight and management of finance and trade, forums for conflict resolution, etc.) and more abstract (maintaining cultural and bio-diversity, just and fair agreements for such issues as resource extraction or regional pollution, and managing the clash of different value systems, etc.). The US and Japan have a unique opportunity to be a strong positive influence regarding these issues.

· Understanding Institutions - both in terms of multilateral (e.g. WTO, APEC, ARF, etc.), bilateral (e.g. US-Japan Common Agenda) and those within the US and Japan (e.g. legislative, bureaucratic, non-governmental, etc.). Studies can be comparative and descriptive: to help each country understand the other and improve communication, trust and institutional cooperation. The research can also be analytical with an eye toward institutional reform or institution building, but there must still be a clear link to the Foundations mission.

· US-Japan Trade and Economic Relations - emphasis is on Japanese and Americans working together to understand and seek common solutions to potentially contentious issues (e.g. trade imbalance, trade agreements, tax treaties, etc.) and develop policies for mutual and/or regional economic stability and improvement.

· National Interest / Foreign Policy - topics include the US and Japan vis-à-vis the Korean Peninsula and/or China; regional security issues; Confidence Building Measures; controlling weapons proliferation; bilateral security arrangements and policies (with a particular emphasis on US military bases in Japan / Okinawa); managing environment-related threats or crisis; regional peacekeeping; and other related issues that can either threaten or help enhance regional peace and stability.

6. Notwithstanding point 5 above, the Foundation will seek out the best quality projects in service to the Foundations mission, regardless of issue area.
This Policy Program Description is not meant to be exhaustive or exclusionary. The Foundation is always looking for unique approaches to improving the US-Japan relationship.

For a description of the application process, please click here.

Comments and questions regarding the guidelines are encouraged.

For more information regarding the Communication and Public Opinion Programs at the United States-Japan Foundation, please contact David Janes, Director of Foundation Grants and Assistant to the President, at djanes@us-jf.org

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