East Asia and the Pacific

< Regional Highlights | Awards for East Asia and the Pacific >


2013 Fulbright U.S. Scholars to China meet with U.S. Ambassador to China Gary F. Locke.

The core Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program offers a spectrum of opportunities for American faculty, researchers and professionals to conduct research, lecture, and/or consult with other scholars and institutions in the East Asia Pacific region—a region considered to be the world’s growth engine in economics, politics and culture.

With approximately 54 award offerings and close to 150 grants funded annually, the East Asia Pacific (EAP) region is the second largest regional program within the core Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program. The region endorses applications in all disciplines and supports flexible grant options for academics, professionals, and non-Ph.D. holders. Early career to distinguished chair awards are offered to support scholars at every stage of their career.

Explore Fulbright EAP Country and Regional Awards

Northeast Asia


China's growing prosperity is one of the most important developments in the world today. Higher education institutions in China are rapidly turning into top tier world class universities. The Fulbright Program offers teaching and research grants in all disciplines with specific awards for China Studies, Economics, Journalism/Communications, Law, Library and Information Science, and American Studies. 

Hong Kong  is a modern, Chinese city-state that is poised between a rising mainland China and fast-changing relations with the West. In addition to a large and lively expatriate community, the universities are world-class and provide unique opportunities for international scholarly exchange. Research on China and aspects of Hong Kong life and teaching of American Studies are popular areas of interest for Fulbright scholars to pursue. Hong Kong recently transitioned to a four-year, liberal arts based (general education focused) university system.

Japan has become one of Asia's most successful democracies and largest economies. Fulbright scholars to Japan pursue a range of teaching and research areas, many focusing on cross-cultural issues such as disability rights, energy security, and public diplomacy. Additionally, professionals in law, business, government and journalism often pursue field research in Japan.

Macau is a small city with a long history as a Portuguese trading post and a gateway to China. It has a dynamic economy of gaming, tourism and manufacturing. It is also well-connected to both China and Hong Kong. Fulbright teaching and research opportunities at the University of Macau are available in all disciplines.

Mongolia is undergoing profound changes and is struggling to strike a balance between economic development and protection of its unique ecosystems and traditional culture. Mongolia is also working to develop its education system and recently adopted a 12-year schooling system for primary and secondary schooling. Past grantees to Mongolia have conducted projects in such disciplines as education, economics, public administration and political science.

Republic of Korea is an educational powerhouse, producing top PISA-scoring students, and is a global leader in distance learning opportunities for students from all over the world. Past Fulbright scholars have pursued opportunities in areas such as the humanities, fine arts and social sciences. Teaching grants specifically dedicated to studying the United States are always in popular demand.

Taiwan  With a thriving economy, buoyed by rapid technological advancement, a healthcare revolution, and a vibrant media landscape, Taiwan boasts top global universities and academic departments with state of the art facilities. Taiwan is especially attractive for China Studies researchers since it houses the world’s largest collection of Chinese art, some of the world’s best Chinese archives, and is the modern home of much traditional Chinese culture, still active in daily life.

Cross Strait Regional Studies  is the only multi-country award in the EAP region. Fulbright scholars are given the opportunity to explore the shared history and dynamic economic landscape present in China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, by conducting research at institutions from both sides of the Strait. Fulbright scholars are asked to perform studies on the different perspectives on common, current and historical issues.

Southeast Asia

Burma is emerging from years of isolation and international sanctions and thus is experiencing a knowledge gap in many disciplines. Despite increased openness in the country, many challenges remain. Universities are state-run. Most teaching materials are in English, but student proficiency in English remains lower than expected. The Fulbright Program offers teaching grants aimed to strengthen university programs critical to the development of Burma.

2013 Fulbright U.S. Scholar to Cambodia, Karen Reed, Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Florida, College of Nursing.
2013 Fulbright U.S. Scholar to Cambodia, Karen Reed, Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Florida, College of Nursing.

Cambodia  is still recovering from nearly 30 years of upheaval and civil war, but it is in the process of regaining some of its former grandeur enjoyed during the great Angkor Khmer civilization. The Cambodian economy is currently experiencing a surge in the garment making and tourism industries. Both teaching and combination teaching and research grants are available in all disciplines and are especially encouraged in the fields of agribusiness, rural development, forestry, and environmental policy. Scholars interested in strengthening university programs critical to the development of Cambodia are encouraged to apply.

Indonesia is the world's third most populous democracy and the largest Muslim-majority nation.  As part of the U.S.-Indonesia Higher Education Partnership announced in 2010, the U.S. and Indonesia are committed to increasing the numbers of American and Indonesian scholars teaching and conducting research in each other’s countries through the Fulbright Program.

Malaysia  A confluence of Malay, Chinese, Indian and indigenous tribes populate areas as disparate as sandy beaches and tea plantations. Researchers and teachers in scientific areas such as agriculture, forestry and tropical ecology, environmental studies, as well as Southeast Asian history and society, media and information technology, public health, and Islamic topics are highly sought.

The Philippines  is a place of natural wonders and dynamic cultures gathered along the second largest archipelago in the world.  The country is well on its way to meeting many of its Millennium Development goals by 2015, although universal primary education and maternal health pose the biggest development challenges. Fulbright grants to the Philippines are available in all disciplines and are especially encouraged in fields involving foreign relations, education, economic development, environmental studies and global issues.

Singapore  is one of the world’s busiest trading ports and a vibrant banking and business capital with a multicultural society. Singapore has a bilingual education policy with English being the medium of education starting from elementary school all the way through tertiary education. Fulbright grants for teaching, research or a combination of teaching and research are offered in all disciplines.

Thailand  connects mainland and maritime Southeast Asia through key transport corridors supported by modern facilities and infrastructure, making it an ideal hub of communication. Such strategic positioning also blesses Thailand with diversity resembling various religions, ethnicities, languages, foods, and cultures of Southeast Asia. Fulbright grants for teaching, research or a combination of teaching and research Thailand are available in all disciplines and are especially encouraged in the fields of music, art and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).

2012 Fulbright U.S. Scholar to Vietnam, Michael Goldberg, Adjunct Professor, Case Western Reserve University, Weatherhead School of Management.
Watch his video scholar profile.

Vietnam  is aiming to produce over 20,000 Ph.D. holders as well as join the ranks of developed nations by 2020. Teaching and research opportunities in all disciplines are welcome. For teaching grants, most of the grant will be devoted to consulting and advising host institutions on curriculum and program development as well as providing staff training.

Pacific Rim

Australia is a primarily Western culture influenced by sizable minority populations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as well as multi-ethnic immigrants from Asia and beyond. There has been a recent emphasis on research and/or teaching of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Australia offers distinguished chair positions, all discipline grants for research or teaching and research activities, and professional grants in climate change and clean energy.

New Zealand is a country renowned for its gorgeous scenery and epitomizes the “go green” initiative, establishing itself as one of the world leaders of eco-tourism, and thereby one of the cleanest and lushest places to visit. While many Fulbright scholars do focus their teaching and research on environmental-related fields, grants are encouraged from all disciplines.

Additional EAP Regional Travel Opportunities

Additional short-term (3-14 days) travel to other countries within the East Asia Pacific Region may be available within the period of the Fulbright country grant under the Fulbright East Asia Pacific (EAP) Regional Travel Program or Fulbright Association of Southeast Asian Nation (ASEAN) Regional Travel Program.  In order to qualify for either program, awarded grantees must apply through their host country Fulbright Commission or U.S. Embassy. Proposed travel activities may include lectures, workshops, graduate or faculty seminars, master classes or recitals, curricular advising, public lectures or panel presentations. Successful ASEAN Travel Program applications will be only for travel to ASEAN countries and have an ASEAN focus to the proposed activities. Both programs are available on a first-come, first-served basis, so please contact your Commission/U.S. Embassy as soon as possible once you are awarded a grant to find out if you are eligible to apply.

To learn more about Fulbright U.S. Scholar opportunities in the East Asia Pacific region, please contact eastasiapacific@iie.org.

The Fulbright Specialist Program also offers short-term grants ranging from two to six weeks that focus on addressing the needs of host institutions in various countries across the region.