IIAS (and IIAS/FMSH) Fellowship Application - Terms and Conditions

IIAS is a globally oriented post-doctoral institute that actively promotes new and interdisciplinary approaches to Asian Studies.

We invite outstanding scholars to apply for a fellowship at IIAS. Applicants may also apply for an extra two months of research at the Fondation Maison des sciences de l’homme (FMSH) in Paris, in the framework of an additional combined IIAS+FMSH fellowship.

For whom?

The information provided on this page is intended for researchers who would like to apply for an IIAS-funded Fellowship (with or without an additional research period at FMSH, in Paris).

We strongly recommend that applicants explore our website and familiarise themselves with the diverse projects, activities, events, and publications fostered at IIAS.

Consult the Frequently Asked Questions page.


IIAS Fellowship and IIAS+FMSH Fellowship are intended for outstanding researchers (see 'Terms and conditions' below) from around the world, to work on important aspects of Asian studies in the Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts. Interdisciplinary interests are encouraged.

Research focus

IIAS aims to promote a more integrated and global understanding of Asian realities. Through our programmes and activities we seek to cultivate humanistically-informed and policy-relevant knowledge about Asia. IIAS is also involved in a number of projects that connects academic and non-academic forms of knowledge. 

IIAS invites applications for developing innovative research, writing, and/or societally engaged and collaborative projects along our three thematic clusters: 'Asian Cities', 'Asian Heritages' and 'Global Asia'.

Please indicate to which cluster(s) your proposal best relates on the application form (see below). Also, do let us know how your proposed research will contribute to reconfiguring the existing field of Asian Studies, both conceptually and methodologically. In some cases, the research can be allocated to more than one cluster. Choose the one with which your project has the greatest affinity. 

We also encourage applicants to share their involvement in other activities (for example, social work, activism, creative/artistic or curatorial/editorial experience, etc.) that might be relevant to the project proposal.

Selection Process and Assessment Criteria

The Selection Committee will take into account the proposal’s intellectual potential, conceptual framework, its methodological coherence, the project feasibility, its synchronicity with IIAS’ vision and its potential to advance the applicant’s professional trajectory.

From this year onwards, the selection process will consist of two separate steps. In the first stage, candidates submit the completed form with all the attached documents via our website. In the second stage shortlisted candidates will be asked to send Reference Letters and a short video. Instructions for preparing the video will be provided via email.

The current Selection Committee is composed of highly qualified individual academics from different fields, based in Europe, Asia and North America. The selection process is guided by the need to ensure a variety of academic profiles, as well as gender equality.

The following criteria will be taken into account throughout the selection process:

  • The project’s potential to advance its field(s) of study; its original contribution to scholarly knowledge.
  • A diversity of outputs (i.e. publications, methodologies, protocols) and activities (i.e. knowledge and data sharing, collaborations, mobility experiences).
  • Open practices for sharing research results and methodologies, whenever possible.
  • Interdisciplinarity. 
  • High standards of ethics and integrity, appropriate conduct of research, and good practices.

Terms and conditions

  1. Applicants must have fulfilled all requirements of the PhD. If you are a PhD candidate at the time of application, you may also apply, provided that you graduate within five months after the application deadline (see below). A letter from your university will be required to confirm your graduation before this date.
  2. The IIAS Fellowship will be tenable for a period of 12 months. from the first week of September 2024 to the last week of August 2025.
  3. The IIAS Fellowship Programme is residential. The fellowship includes a flat in Leiden, within walking distance from the institute. 
  4. Fellows are expected to be physically based in Leiden or in the Netherlands for at least two-thirds of their fellowship period.
  5. Fellows are expected to participate in IIAS activities, including lectures, seminars, and social events.
  6. Fellows will be provided with shared workstations, use of a conference and screening room and access to libraries. The researchers will also benefit from IIAS' vast network of collaborators and partner institutions.
  7. The IIAS Fellowship Programme does not fund field research.
  8. All print and online publications, as well as films/videos resulting from the IIAS fellowship must acknowledge that the research or publication was made possible, in part, by the International Institute for Asian Studies.
  9. IIAS attaches great importance to a safe and pleasant working environment. It is essential that fellows enjoy the work environment and can conduct their research without hindrance. Collegiality and respect should be guaranteed. If undesirable behaviour occurs within the programme, you may contact the Fellowship Programme Coordinator for support and guidance.


If IIAS decides to sponsor your research by awarding a fellowship, you will receive:

  • A monthly stipend of €1250 for 12 months
  • Housing (a flat in Leiden about 20 minutes walking distance from IIAS headquarters)
  • A one-time grant of max. €1000 towards the costs of (international) round-trip travel..

IIAS + FMSH GRANT / Complementary research period at the Fondation Maison des sciences de l’homme (FMSH) in Paris

The IIAS-FMSH is a short-term intra-European fellowship programme. The combined fellowship therefore provides fellows with a one-year research experience in an internationally renowned area studies institute (IIAS) and a two-month visiting stint in an equally prestigious advanced studies institute (FMSH).

Designed to enhance the intra-European circulation of researchers in Asian studies, the IIAS-FMSH partnership aims to decompartmentalise knowledge production and diversify perspectives, offering our fellows an excellent opportunity for knowledge exchange, cooperation and networking.

Anyone applying for an IIAS fellowship can simultaneously apply for an extra period of 2 months at the FMSH in Paris. If you are interested in this option, please indicate it on the IIAS Fellowship Application Form.
The FMSH provides a monthly grant of €2000 covering travel costs, accommodation and living expenses in France.

About the FMSH

The Foundation Maison des sciences de l'homme is the first French foundation dedicated to the Humanities and the Social Sciences. For more than 60 years, the Foundation has promoted the free circulation of knowledge, nurturing interdisciplinary and intercultural dialogue.

Created in 1963 by the historian Fernand Braudel, the Fondation Maison des Sciences de l’Homme (FMSH) continues the original project while adapting it to contemporary circumstances. The Fondation supports innovative and international research in the Humanities and the Social Sciences, and disseminates knowledge to the greatest number of people in order to respond to the major challenges facing our society.

By annually supporting nearly 400 researchers from around the world and ensuring the dissemination of a wide range of scientific resources, the FMSH plays a major role in France’s academic and intellectual life.

In 2019, FMSH and IIAS jointly established this dual fellowship programme, facilitating a short-term residency in Paris for select IIAS fellows. Please note that applicants for the combined IIAS + FMSH fellowships must begin their visit at the FMSH immediately after completing their IIAS fellowship in Leiden. 

Selected IIAS fellows are accommodated by the Fondation at the centrally located Maison Suger, in the heart of Paris, for a period of two months. The FMSH provides fellows with individual flats within the Maison Suger. 
Located in the historical centre of Paris, Maison Suger offers researchers in the Social Sciences and the Humanities an exceptional working and living environment. During their fellowship period, researchers are expected to participate in events and meetings organised by Maison Suger for the researchers in residence.

For more information, visit the FMSH website:

Application form and deadline

Next application round starts on 1 October 2023 and closes on 1 December 2023.

Application documents

Applications consist of the following mandatory materials

  1. IIAS Fellowship Application Form (online), completed in full with the required uploaded documents
  2. Curriculum Vitae
  3. List of publications
  4. Work plan
  5. Reference Letters will NOT be requested in the first stage of the application process. Only shortlisted candidates will be asked to send letters in the second stage of the selection process.
  6. If you are applying for the combined IIAS + FMSH Fellowship, you must upload a Motivation Letter explaining the reasons for undertaking an additional research stay of two months at the FMSH in Paris, following the completion of your fellowship at IIAS in Leiden. 


  1. All information and documents must be sent through the online IIAS Fellowship Application Form.
  2. Attached files larger than 4MB are rejected by our system. Please put your first name, last name, and content description in the file's title to be uploaded.
  3. Shortlisted applicants will be notified between February and March 2024. The final results will be released in April 2024. We kindly ask you to wait patiently until we get in touch by e-mail to inform you of the Fellowship Selection Committee's decision.