The Japan Residencies Program

The deadline has passed. Please check back summer 2019 for information.

Deadline: Applications must be submitted by October 1, 2018.

By applying for this program, you are agreeing to OAH’s use of your data however it is needed in the normal course of business if selected as winner or honorable mention. Read our privacy policy here.

In cooperation with and support from the Japan-United States Friendship Commission, the OAH and the Japanese Association for American Studies (JAAS) plan to send two American scholars to Japanese universities for two-week residencies in the summer of 2019 (pending funding).

The committee seeks applications from OAH members who are established American scholars affiliated with an American or Canadian university interested in teaching advanced undergraduates and graduate students in seminars and courses focusing on the U.S. History topics requested by the host institutions.

During their residencies, the American historians give at least six lectures and/or seminars in English in their specialty. They also meet individually and in groups with Japanese scholars, graduate students, and undergraduate students studying American history and culture, and participate in the collegial life of their host institutions. The purpose of this exchange program is to facilitate scholarly dialogue and contribute to the expansion of scholarly networks among students and professors of American history in both countries. We are pleased to announce the twenty-third year of the competition.

Round-trip airfare to Japan, housing, and modest daily expenses are covered by the award (note: if the host university is unable to provide housing, award recipients are expected to use the daily stipend to pay hotel expenses). Award winners are also encouraged to explore Japan before or after their two-week residency at their own expense.

Host Institutions for 2019

Seijo University

For two weeks: From May 26 to June 8, 2019

Hoping for a specialist in immigration and social/cultural history of the United States, ­­­preferably with special interest in trans-Pacific migration.

Seijo University is well-known for its focus on the arts and social sciences, with its four undergraduate faculties (Economics, Arts and Literature, Law, and Social Innovation) and corresponding graduate schools. Seijo has its origins in “Seijo Gakuen,” Seijo Educational Institutes, which was founded in 1917, by Dr. Masataro Sawayanagi, a key figure in modern Japanese education. After the postwar educational system reforms, the present Seijo University was established in 1950. Since then, Seijo has adhered to the founding philosophy, which respects individuality and creativity of students, particularly by retaining small-class education. With about 6,000 students enrolled, Seijo University has endeavored to provide education of the highest quality by encouraging initiative and independent thought in its free and relaxed learning atmosphere. Seijo University is located in the area known as Seijo, a quiet residential neighborhood, which is approximately fifteen minutes by rapid train from the central Shinjuku area. A three-minute walk from the train station, Seijo is surrounded by a lush natural environment, reminiscent of the old natural expanse of the Musashino area, and the greenery here is an unusual occurrence in the city of Tokyo.

Faculty of Law of Seijo University was established in 1977, following Faculty of Economics, and of Arts and Literature. With “back to the basics” as the primary concept of the curriculum, Faculty of Law focuses on imparting students with a solid foundation in law and on educating individuals to function in a diverse social environment. Of several research institutes in Seijo, the recently established Center for Glocal Studies strives to shed light on socio-cultural dynamics within myriad “contact zones” between the global and the local of various different groupings and/or communities.

Host: Yoko Tsukuda, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Seijo University

Associate Professor Yoko Tsukuda received her PhD in American Studies from the University of Tokyo in 2011, and MA in Ethnic Studies from San Francisco State University in 2004. Her research interests include race, ethnicity, migration, with an emphasis on Japanese Americans and their contemporary communities. Her publications include “The ‘Jap Road’ Controversy and Multiculturalism in the United States,” (Japanese) Kyoyo Ronsyu (2018), “The ‘Local’ Created by Japanese Global Corporations: A Case Study of Southern California,” (Japanese) Shakai sesshoku no Glocal Kenkyu (Glocal Studies of Social Contact) (2016), “Location, Positionality, and Community: Studying and Teaching Japanese America in the U.S. and Japan” in Transpacific Japanese American Studies (2016),“Place, Community, and Identity: The Preservation Movement of San Francisco’s Japantown,” Pacific and American Studies 9 (2009), and “Communities Created through the Production of Scale: Controversy over the Renaming of ‘Jap Road’ in Texas,” 49th Parallel (2006).

Tohoku University

For two weeks: From June 1 to June 14, 2019

Hoping for a cultural historian of the twentieth century.

Tohoku University was founded in 1907 as the third imperial university. Unlike other imperial universities, it initiated an “open door” policy, accepting graduates from both technical and non-elite high schools. In 1913, it went a step further to, despite opposition from the government, become Japan’s first university to admit female students. Today, Tohoku University consists of ten undergraduate schools, sixteen graduate schools, six research institutes, nine institutes/organizations, and twenty-nine inter-departmental institutes. The number of students enrolled is 18,000 (including 2,200 international students)—11,000 undergraduate students and 7,000 graduate students. Tohoku University embraces its role as a world-class research university, holding international partnerships with major universities worldwide.

Tohoku University is located in Sendai, Miyagi prefecture—200 miles northeast of Tokyo. The history of Sendai dates back to the early seventeenth century, when shogun Date Masamune relocated his stronghold to Sendai. Today, with the population of 1,080,000, Sendai is the largest city in the northeast region of Japan. The city offers various cultural events throughout the year, including the tanabata festival, jazz festival, and illumination pageant, all of which have grown out of grassroots activities. Also, the neighboring areas of Sendai are rich in nature; its scenic coastline and mountain ranges are must-see. In addition, Miyagi produces best quality rice. It is no wonder that tourists from many different parts of the world visit Sendai to enjoy diverse experiences the city provides.

Host: Shuichi Takebayashi, Associate Professor, Tohoku University

Shuichi Takebayashi received his MA (Penn State) and PhD (Michigan State), both in American Studies. He researches the post-WWII American cultural history. He has published a book on the counterculture in the 1960s. His publications include The Counterculture in America: Hopes and Disappointments [Japanese] (2014); “The Prehistory of the British Invasion: Transatlantic Exchange of Folk Music Tradition” in Trans/American, Trans/Oceanic, Trans/lation: Issues in International American Studies (2010); and “Jackson State Killing of 1970,” and “Altamont Free Concert of 1969,” and “Blacklisting in the 1950s” in Disasters and Tragic Events and How They Changed the American History [encyclopedia] (2013). Currently, he is working on the cultural shift in the 1970s, examining events of the turbulent sixties and their consequences.

How to Apply

Applicants must be members of the OAH, have a PhD, and be scholars of American history. Applicants from previous competitions are welcome to apply again. Award winners are expected to attend the 2019 OAH Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, so that they can meet with visiting Japanese scholars and graduate students and with members of the OAH/JAAS Japan Historians' Collaborative Committee before their trips to Japan. Please note that the dates of the residencies are not negotiable.

Applications must include the items below.

Please send all materials (in one PDF labeled with your name) by midnight PST on October 1, 2018 to and indicate "2019 Japan Residencies Program-[UNIVERSITY NAME]" in the subject line. If you would like to apply for both residencies, please send a separate application for each.

  • A two-page curriculum vitae emphasizing teaching experience and publications.
  • The institution for which you would like to be considered.
  • A personal statement, no longer than two pages, describing your interest in this program and the issues that your own scholarship and teaching have addressed. Please devote one or two paragraphs to why you understand this residency to be central to your development as a scholar in the world community. You may include comments on any previous collaboration or work with non-U.S. academics or students. If you wish, you may comment on your particular interest in Japan.
  • A letter of recommendation, to be solicited by the applicant and sent directly by the recommender to OAH (, which should also address the applicant’s teaching skill. The subject line of the e-mail should say “Recommendation for [NAME OF APPLICANT]."

Deadline: Applications must be submitted by October 1, 2018.