The United Nations – Nippon Foundation Strategic Needs Fellowship 2023 for Government officials and mid-level professionals. (Fully Funded to New York, U.S.A)

The call for applications for the 2023 United Nations – The Nippon Foundation Strategic Needs Fellowship is now open

The Strategic Needs Fellowship aims to enable the most vulnerable States, particularly least developed countries, small island developing States and landlocked developing countries, to better address strategically important and time-sensitive issues facing them in ocean affairs and the law of the sea. Government officials from these States with a limited background in ocean affairs and the law of the sea, who are filling key positions in their Administration, are provided with in-depth highly customized training on ocean affairs and the law of the sea, with a focus on those areas in which 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.

Fellowship structure, curriculum and deliverables

  • The Fellowship consists of a four-month training programme at the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, Office of Legal Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. A highly customized individual curriculum is developed by DOALOS for successful candidates, based on the high‐priority needs identified by their States and with a view to building the capacity of Fellows to assist the State in effectively addressing those needs.
  • In addition, the Fellows will be fully integrated in the training activities developed for the UN-NF Fellows, thereby being exposed to opportunities for additional learning and networking. For further details on the Fellowship curriculum, see this documentPDF.
  • The deliverables of the Fellowship Programme include a number of assignments to be completed in the context of the training curriculum and the development of an ocean governance matrix.


Nominated candidates must meet all the following criteria:

  1. Must be between the ages of 25 and 40;
  2. Must have successfully completed a first-level university degree;
  3. Must be Government officials from developing countries dealing directly with critical issues related to sustainable development of oceans and seas including the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development; national and/or regional ocean policy; establishment of maritime zones and 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 marine science;
  4. Their proposed study programme must contribute directly to the State’s formulation and/or implementation of ocean affairs and law of the sea policies and programmes;
  5. 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.


  • 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 programme, during their time at the second phase host institution. The stipend is paid from the date a Fellow departs from their home country, and ends on the date of completion of the Fellowship, including a maximum travel time of up to two days by the most direct air route, in accordance with United Nations travel rules.
  • Fellows will be provided with a return economy class air-ticket to travel from their home country to complete the Fellowship. 
  • Strategic Needs Fellows will be provided with return economy class air-tickets between their home country and DOALOS in New York. Fellows undertaking the 9-month United Nations – Nippon Foundation Fellowship will be provided with economy class air-tickets to travel from their home country to DOALOS in New York, from New York to their second host institution, and from the second host institution back to their home country. 

Application Deadline: March 24, 2023

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the United Nations – Nippon Foundation Strategic Needs Fellowship 2023

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