• New York

Call for applications for the 2024 session of the United Nations – The Nippon Foundation Strategic Needs Fellowship Programme!

The Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea of the Office of Legal Affairs of the United Nations (“OLA/DOALOS”), is now accepting applications for the 2024 session of the United Nations – The Nippon Foundation Strategic Needs Fellowship Programme. Through the Strategic Needs Fellowship, the most vulnerable States—least developed nations, small island developing states, and landlocked developing nations—will be able to address better strategically significant and urgent issues about ocean affairs and maritime law. In-depth, highly customized training on ocean affairs and the law of the sea is given to government officials from these States who hold important positions in their administration but have little prior experience in these areas. The training focuses on the areas where the states have identified critical capacity barriers.

Upon completion of the Fellowship, Fellows are expected to return to their positions and use their training on international legal frameworks, key issues and best practices in ocean affairs, the work of the United Nations, and professional skills, to assist their States in the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and related instruments, as well as Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 and other related SDGs.

The Fellowship is a four-month training program at the Office of Legal Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat, Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, at UN Headquarters in New York. For the chosen candidates, DOALOS creates a highly customized personalized curriculum based on the high-priority needs indicated by their respective States, to enhance Fellows’ capacity to support the State in effectively addressing such needs. The Fellows will also have full access to the training programs created for the UN-NF Fellows, providing them with further education and networking opportunities.

Awards will be communicated individually to the successful candidates and posted on the Fellowship website in the second half of April 2024. The Fellowship will take place between mid-August and mid-December 2024. It is intended that 11 Fellowships will be offered in 2024.


United States


  • Fellows will receive a stipend each month during their Fellowship, both during their time in New York and, for United Nations – Nippon Foundation Fellows participating in the 9-month program, during their time at the second phase host institution.
  • Strategic Needs Fellows will be provided with return economy class air tickets between their home country and DOALOS in New York.
  • For the period of the Fellowship, medical coverage is provided by Cigna Health Insurance. Cigna offers 100% medical coverage for general medical and hospital treatments up to a certain limit. Specialized services are not covered.
  • In addition to the stipend, the United Nations – Nippon Foundation Fellows (the 9-month Programme) will be provided with a Book Allowance of US$100 per month for phase two of the Fellowship ($600 altogether).
  • The United Nations will provide a visa support letter to assist you and the authorities with determining the appropriate visa classification for you.


  • Be between the ages of 25 and 40
  • Possess at least a first-level university degree or equivalent
  • Demonstrate an ability to undertake advanced academic research and studies
  • Be from a developing State
  • Be Government officials dealing directly with strategic issues related to the sustainable development of oceans and seas (e.g. the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development; national and/or regional ocean policy; the establishment of maritime zones and/or the delimitation of maritime boundaries; coastal zone management; conservation and management of marine living resources; maritime transport and shipping; maritime security; the protection and preservation of the marine environment; and/or marine science).
  • Their proposed study program must contribute directly to the State’s formulation and/or implementation of ocean affairs and the law of the sea policies and programs;
  • Must be free of all non-Fellowship obligations during this entire period unless otherwise authorized by the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, Office of Legal Affairs.
Eligible Regions: Developing Countries.

Application Process

  • To apply, download the form, find the download link in the Apply link by clicking on the “APPLY NOW” button, and fill in all the fields electronically. Kindly use the Sentence case for filling in the data (e.g. John Smith), do not use all capital letters to write your answers (e.g. JOHN SMITH). Apply your electronic or handwritten signature and use the “Save” option to save your changes. Kindly return the form as a Word or pdf document.
  • Each question must be answered clearly and completely in order to ensure that the application will be processed. While completing this form, candidates should pay particular attention to sections 18, 19, and 20. If necessary, candidates may attach no more than one additional page of the same size.
  • The Application form consists of two documents: 1. The “Personal History and Proposed Research/Study Programme Form”, and 2. The “Nomination and Recommendation Form”. Both forms must be signed, the first one by the applicant, and the second one by the official nominating entity. The forms may be returned to us in either Word or PDF format.
  • Once both the “Nomination and Recommendation Form” and the “Personal History and Proposed Research/Study Programme Form” are completed and signed, please email them directly to DOALOS at [email protected] before the deadline.

Application Deadline: February 16, 2024

Application ClosedOfficial link

For Further Queries

For further information you may contact - Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/undoalos | Twitter(X): https://twitter.com/undoalos
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