Skip to main content

Opportunity for studies and research in Iceland or Japan

30. Nov 2017

The Watanabe Trust Fund at the University of Iceland calls for applications from students who wish to obtain scholarships for studies abroad in Iceland or Japan. This will be the eighth time scholarships are offered by the Fund. The aim of the Fund is to encourage and assist students to carry out a part of their undergraduate or graduate studies in Iceland or Japan. The fund also supports scholars and university teachers for visits related to their research work or research collaboration with the University of Iceland or at Japanese universities.

The application deadline is 15th of January 2018.

Students registered at the University of Iceland intending to carry out part of their studies in Japan and students registered with a Japanese university who intend to carry out part of their studies at the University of Iceland are eligible for scholarships. Scholars working at the University of Iceland or Japanese universities or research institutes can also apply.

The awarded grant will be in the form of monthly allowances for living expenses. This will be 200.000 ISK per month for a Japanese student in Iceland and 150.000 JPY per month for an Icelandic student in Japan. Scholarship recipients staying more than one month can also receive up to 200.000 ISK travel support. University fees and other expenses will not be covered by the scholarship. Post-doctoral researchers, university teachers and other academics can also apply for up to 500.000 ISK scholarships for shorter visits relating to their academic work or research collaboration with University of Iceland.

Eligible applicants are undergraduate students graduate students and other scholars which can apply for up to 9 months support. The period of stay shall be during the academic year 2018-2019.

The Watanabe Trust Fund

The Watanabe Trust Fund was established at the University of Iceland in 2008 and plays a significant part in strengthening the academic ties between Iceland and Japan. The fund gives students and academics from the University of Iceland a unique chance to study and work at a Japanese university, and equally students and academics at Japanese universities get the chance to study and work at the University of Iceland The establishment of the Trust Fund furthermore advances the University of Iceland’s ambitious long-term goal of becoming one of the world leading universities.

Mr. Toshizo Watanabe, who donated the founding contribution for the fund, is the founder of The Toshizo Watanabe Foundation and chairman emeritus of Nikken, a successful international wellness products company, with its headquarters in the United States. As a young man, he was an exchange student at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, where he made the acquaintance of ex-Prime Minister, Geir H. Haarde. Mr. Watanabe was able to study in the United States due to a scholarship he received from the renowned Wien International Scholarship Program and is forever thankful to those who granted him this opportunity. On signing the Fund’s charter, Mr. Watanabe stated that he wanted to show his gratitude for the assistance he received by setting up a fund himself to encourage and assist students to study abroad, and subsequently to strengthen the ties between Iceland and Japan. He contacted Geir H. Haarde, his former fellow student, with the intention to set up a trust fund in Iceland.

Current board members are:  Professor Már Másson, chairman of the board, Mr Toshizo “Tom” Watanabe and Mr Ingimundur Sigfússon, formerly Ambassador of Iceland to Japan.

For further information and application forms visit the website and the Trust Fund’s website: Hafliði Sævarsson, tel. +354-525-5264, email:

Final reports of previous scholarships recipients can also be found on the website:

Applications shall be submitted no later than the 15th of January 2018, written in English and sent electronically to