October 2017
Funding Opportunities in the Social Sciences

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Unless otherwise noted, all proposals to funders outside of Harvard must be submitted to the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) five business days prior to the sponsor deadline. We can help you navigate the routing process for your proposal.

Questions? Please contact Erin Hale, Senior Research Development Officer at 
erin_hale@fas.harvard.edu or 617-496-5252.
Internal Opportunities
For a more comprehensive list of Harvard internal funding opportunities, please see  here .
External Opportunities
Non-Federal Opportunities:
Federal Opportunities:
Internal Funding Opportunities
Deadline: November 15, 2017
Award Amount: Up to $60,000 for conference grants and $50,000 - $100,000 for research grants

The Harvard China Fund administers the Harvard China Faculty Grant Program to advance the research goals of Harvard faculty in collaboration with Chinese partners. Research proposals are welcome in any field and especially encouraged in the areas of traditional Chinese arts and culture, environmental studies and education. If proposing a conference, it should take place at the Harvard Center Shanghai, preferably before March 2019. Conference proposals are welcome in all research fields. Preference will be given to proposed projects for which funding might not be otherwise available from traditional sources.
Deadline: October 30, 2017
Award Amount: Up to $20,000 for research and travel; Up to $50,000 for conferences

Research and travel grants support Harvard faculty research and travel on any topic related to East, South, or Southeast Asia. Preference is given to projects that involve more than one country or region of East, South, or Southeast Asia and/or that approach the topic from more than one discipline. Applications submitted by multiple faculty members are encouraged.  

Conference grants support conferences organized by Harvard faculty in pairs or small groups. Topics must involve more than one country or region of East, South, or Southeast Asia and must approach the topic from more than one discipline. Preference will be given to faculty who collaborate across more than one School. 
Deadline: last day of November, February, May, and August
Award Amount: $40,000 for ladder faculty; $5,000 for doctoral students and post-docs
Eligible Applicants: Harvard University full time doctoral students, post-doctoral fellows, and ladder faculty.

The FHBI provides seed grants to support transformative research in the social and behavioral sciences. Successful proposals will be those that promise to advance understanding of the social, institutional and biological mechanisms shaping human beliefs and behavior. Funds will be used to support interdisciplinary social science research projects based on innovative experimental or observational designs that make use of sophisticated quantitative methods. The Fund also supports seminars, conferences, and other research-related activities.
External Funding Opportunities
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: January 15, 2018
Award Amount: Past predoctoral fellows have received stipends in the range of $25,000 to $30,500; postdoctoral fellows have received stipends in the range of $48,000 to $71,200.

The Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC) is an interdisciplinary community of scholars dedicated to producing policy-relevant research on international security topics. It is devoted to research, teaching, and training the next generation of security specialists, to influencing policymaking in international security, and to developing a more informed public discussion. CISAC Fellows spend the academic year engaged in research and writing, and are encouraged to participate in seminars and to interact and collaborate with leading faculty and researchers. CISAC fellows may focus on any of the following topics: nuclear weapons policy and nonproliferation; nuclear energy; cybersecurity, cyberwarfare, and the future of the Internet; biosecurity and global health; implications of geostrategic shifts; insurgency, terrorism, and homeland security; war and civil conflict; consolidating peace after conflict; as well as global governance, migration, transnational flows, from norms to criminal trafficking, and other international security topics.
OSP Deadline: January 5, 2018
Sponsor Deadline: January 12, 2018
Award Amount: Varies; average award size is $5,482. 

These annual fellowships support scholars of all disciplines to study at a location or locations--either national or international--other than their home institution. The aim is to stimulate and broaden the minds of teachers so as to improve and enhance the quality of their instruction. Grants are primarily for travel and related expenses and not as salary substitutes, scholarships or grants in aid. While there is a preference toward teachers at Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Foundation awards fellowships across the New England area.

The Foundation does not maintain a website but application guidelines can be found here. Applicants should submit all required materials along with the candidate information form to the foundation via email.
Harvard OSP Deadline: January 3, 2018
Sponsor Deadline: January 10, 2018
Award Amount: Up to $150,000

This program supports digitally based research projects in all disciplines of the humanities and related social sciences. It is hoped that these grants will help advance humanistic scholarship by enhancing established digital projects, extending their reach to new communities of users, and supporting teams of scholars at all career stages as they participate in digital research projects. 

This program aims to extend the opportunity to participate in the digital transformation of humanistic inquiry to a greater number of humanities scholars. To this end, projects supported by ACLS Digital Extension Grants may:
  • Develop new systems of making existing digital resources available to broader audiences and/or scholars from diverse institutions
  • Extend existing digital projects and resources with content that adds diversity or interdisciplinary reach
  • Foster new team-based collaborations between scholars at all career stages. Projects that convene, train, and empower communities of humanities faculty and/or graduate students around established digital research projects, as well as projects that allow scholars from institutions with limited digital infrastructure to exploit digital resources or to participate in existing labs or working groups, are especially welcome
  • Create new forms and sites for scholarly engagement with the digital humanities. Projects that document and recognize participant engagement are strongly encouraged.
Grants support a range of project costs, including, where necessary, salary replacement for faculty or staff, software, equipment, travel, project related convenings, and consultant fees.
OSP review not required for letters of inquiry
Sponsor Letter of Inquiry Deadline: December 15, 2017
Award Amount: Not specified. Recent grants have ranged from $5,000-$150,000.

The United States-Japan Foundation supports US-Japan policy-related studies, initiatives and exchanges that help address issues of significant mutual concern to the United States and Japan. The Foundation seeks to respond to policy-relevant needs as identified by experts and practitioners in US-Japan policy studies field and is therefore open to innovative projects.
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: December 11, 2017
Award Amount:  Junior (untenured) fellows receive a stipend of $25,000 per semester; senior (tenured) fellows receive $30,000 per semester.

Each year, the Kroc Institute's Visiting Research Fellows Program brings outstanding scholars focused on peace research to the University of Notre Dame for a semester or a full academic year. The Institute particularly seeks scholars who will actively integrate their research with ongoing Kroc research initiatives. The Kroc Institute seeks applications for Visiting Research Fellows for 2017-18 in the following areas:
  • Gender and Conflict/Peacebuilding
  • Conflict-related Migration and Diaspora Communities 
  • Peace Studies (open)
Harvard OSP Deadline: December 8, 2017
Deadline: December 15, 2017 
Award Amount: Recent grants have ranged from $20,000 to $1,000,000, with the majority of grants under $100,000.

The Searle Freedom Trust fosters research and education on public policy issues that affect individual freedom and economic liberty. Through its grant-making, the foundation seeks to develop solutions to the country's most important and challenging domestic policy issues.  The foundation invests primarily in scholarship that results in the publication of books, journal articles, and policy papers. Funding is typically provided in the form of research grants, fellowships, and other types of targeted project support.  The Searle Freedom Trust also provides funding for public interest litigation and supports outreach to the public through a variety of forums, including sponsorship of research conferences and seminars, film and journalism projects, and new media initiatives.
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: December 7, 2017
Award Amount: $45,000
Through its Fellowship Programs, the Ford Foundation seeks to increase the diversity of the nation's college and university faculties by increasing their ethnic and racial diversity, to maximize the educational benefits of diversity, and to increase the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students. Awards will be made for study in the following major disciplines and related interdisciplinary fields: American studies, anthropology, archaeology, art and theater history, astronomy, chemistry, communications, computer science, cultural studies, earth sciences, economics, education, engineering, ethnic studies, ethnomusicology, geography, history, international relations, language, life sciences, linguistics, literature, mathematics, performance study, philosophy, physics, political science, psychology, religious studies, sociology, urban planning, and women's studies. Also eligible are interdisciplinary ethnic studies programs, such as African American studies and Native American studies, and other interdisciplinary programs, such as area studies, peace studies, and social justice. 
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: December 1, 2017
Award Amount: Scholars typically receive one-half their academic-year salaries for the appointment period (but this may vary depending on level of support from the home institution), applicable benefits, a taxable moving allowance, and a research allowance.

Princeton University's Center for the Study of Democratic Politics (CSDP) seeks visiting scholars for the 2018-2019 academic year. The Center supports empirical research on democratic political processes and institutions. Applications are welcome from political scientists and scholars in related social science disciplines. CSDP visiting scholar positions are restricted to employed scholars on leave who are expected to return to their position. 

Each scholar will pursue research and contribute to the intellectual life of the Center, the Department of Politics, and the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.  CSDP scholars must be in residence at Princeton during the academic terms, and are expected to participate in the weekly CSDP seminars and related weekly research seminars in the Department of Politics, as well as occasional lectures, conferences, and other events. 
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: December 1, 2017 
Award Amount for Long-Term Fellowships: Up to $35,000 for 6-9 months
Award Amount for Short-Term Fellowships: $2,500/month for 1-3 months

The Scholars-in-Residence Program offers both long-term and short-term fellowships designed to support and encourage top-quality research and writing on the history, politics, literature, and culture of the peoples of Africa and the African diaspora, as well as to promote and facilitate interdisciplinary exchange among scholars and writers in residence at the Schomburg Center. The Schomburg Center is a world-renowned repository of sources on every facet of the African diasporic experience, with extensive holdings including numerous unique manuscript and archival collections as well as a comprehensive range of publications, photographs, films, audio recordings, and visual art. Both long-term and short-term fellowships are awarded for continuous periods in residence at the Schomburg Center. 
OSP review not required for letter of inquiry
Sponsor Letter of Inquiry Deadline: November 30, 2017
Award Amount: Up to $150,000

The Russell Sage Foundation/Kellogg Foundation's Initiative on Non-Standard Employment seeks to support innovative social science research on the causes and consequences of the increased incidence of alternative work arrangements in the United States. Alternative work arrangements are defined as temporary help agency workers, on-call workers, contract workers, and independent contractors or freelancers. 

The foundation is especially interested in novel uses of new or under-utilized data and the development of new methods for analyzing these data. Proposals to conduct field experiments, in-depth qualitative interviews, and ethnographies are also encouraged. Smaller projects might consist of exploratory fieldwork, a pilot study, or the analysis of existing data. RSF encourages methodological variety and inter-disciplinary collaboration.  The foundation will consider proposals for cross-national research that has clear implications for the U.S. labor market.
OSP review not required for letter of inquiry
Sponsor Letter of Inquiry Deadline: November 30, 2017
Award Amount: Up to $150,000

The Russell Sage Foundation currently pursues four principal programs: Behavioral Economics; the Future of Work; Race, Ethnicity, and Immigration; and Social Inequality. RSF encourages methodological variety and inter-disciplinary collaboration, but all proposals must have well-developed conceptual frameworks and research designs. Analytical models must be well-specified and research questions and hypotheses (where applicable) must be clearly stated. Awards are available for research assistance, data acquisition, data analysis, and investigator time for conducting research and writing up results.
OSP review not required for letter of inquiry
Sponsor Letter of Inquiry Deadline: November 30, 2017
Award Amount: Up to $150,000

This Russell Sage Foundation initiative will support innovative social science research on the social, economic and political effects of the Affordable Care Act. The Foundation is especially interested in funding analyses that address important questions about the effects of the reform on outcomes such as financial security and family economic well-being, labor supply and demand, participation in other public programs, family and children's outcomes, and differential effects by age, race, ethnicity, nativity, or disability status. 
Harvard OSP Deadline: November 22, 2017
Sponsor Deadline: December 1, 2017 
Award Amount: No specified limit for research projects

The "Security, Society and the State" research programme targets new security-related issues that are prime examples of the post-Cold-War era but have been largely neglected in mainstream research. The programme is intended to encourage junior scholars to pursue unconventional research agendas that are nonetheless crucial, while providing senior scholars with the opportunity to focus intensively on work in progress for a limited period. Moreover, the objective is to combine basic theoretical research with concepts that are applicable to present-day political issues of security policy. Types of funding include grants for research scholarships and research projects. PhD scholarships are only granted in connection with a research project. Research projects should be closely related to one or more of the five fields of research:
  1. Challenges of New Technologies
  2. Public Administration and Human Security
  3. Patterns of Conflict Resolution Between the State and Traditional Actors
  4. Non-Governmental Actors as Partners and Contenders of the State
  5. Security Strategies Between Doctrine Formation and Implementation
Harvard OSP Deadline: November 22, 2017
Sponsor Deadline: December 1, 2017
Award Amount: $17,500 stipend - $10,000 to be used for summer research support and $7,500 for research assistance during the academic year.

The Nancy Weiss Malkiel Scholars Award Program supports junior faculty whose research focuses on contemporary American history, politics, culture, and society, and whose service addresses the need for a more inclusive, responsive academic culture on their campus for peers and students. Eligible applicants must be tenure-track faculty who have passed their third-year review or their institution's equivalent.
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: November 15, 2017
Award Amount: $30,000
The primary purpose of the Postdoctoral Research Leave Fellowship is to increase the number of women in tenure-track faculty positions and to promote equality for women in higher education. This fellowship is designed to assist the candidate in obtaining tenure and further promotions by enabling her to spend a year pursuing independent research.
Candidates are evaluated on the basis of scholarly excellence; quality and originality of project design; and active commitment to helping women and girls through service in their communities, professions, or fields of research. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. The tenure of the award is one year.
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: November 13, 2017
Award Amount: Fellows receive a research salary of one-half their ten (10) month salary at their home institution, up to a maximum set each year before awards are announced

The Program in Law and Public Affairs (LAPA) at Princeton University invites outstanding faculty members of any discipline, independent scholars, lawyers, and judges to apply for visiting, residential appointments for the academic year 2018-2019. LAPA Fellows devote the major portion of their time to their own research and writing on law-related subjects of empirical, interpretive, doctrinal and/or normative significance. In addition, LAPA Fellows are expected to be in residence for ten months and participate in LAPA programs, including a biweekly seminar, a weekly luncheon discussion group, as well as some public events and conferences. The program does not support, as a primary activity, off-site fieldwork or work in remote archives, development of course materials, work in legal practice, direct advocacy of causes or residence elsewhere.  
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: November 1, 2017
Award Amount: Up to $70,000

The School of Social Science takes as its mission the analysis of contemporary societies and social change. It is devoted to a pluralistic and critical approach to social research, from a multidisciplinary and international perspective. Scholars are drawn from a wide range of fields, notably political theory, economics, law, psychology, sociology, anthropology, history, philosophy, and literature. Members pursue their own research, and participate in collective activities, including a weekly seminar at which on-going work is presented. To facilitate scientific engagement among the visiting scholars, the School defines a theme for each year. Approximately one half of Members selected pursue work related to it and contribute to a corresponding seminar, while the other half conduct their research on other topics. For 2018-2019 the theme will be  "Crisis and Critique."

Each year, between 20 and 25 scholars are selected as Members in the School of Social Science in Princeton, New Jersey. Memberships are awarded at both the junior and senior levels. There is no citizenship requirement for this opportunity.
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: November 1, 2017
Award Amount: $75,000 (full year); $37,500 (one term)

The School of Historical Studies supports scholarship in all fields of historical research, but is concerned principally with the history of western, near eastern and Asian civilizations, with particular emphasis upon Greek and Roman civilization, the history of Europe (medieval, early modern, and modern), the Islamic world, East Asian studies, art history, the history of science and philosophy and modern international relations. Each year, the Institute hosts a community of scholars from around the world to pursue their own research while in residence in Princeton, New Jersey. 

The School takes into account the stage of the scholar's academic career when considering the list of publications, but in general applicants should have at least several articles already published in scholarly publications in order to be considered eligible. The tenure of the award is for one or two terms. There is no citizenship requirement for this opportunity.
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: October 31, 2017
Award Amount: varies by fellowship

The Council on Foreign Relations Fellowship Program offers unique opportunities for mid and senior career professionals focusing on international relations. Selected fellows have the opportunity to broaden their perspective of foreign affairs either by pursuing research or working in a policy-oriented setting. Fellowships with an October 31 deadline include the International Affairs Fellowship, International Affairs Fellowship for Tenured International Relations Scholars, International Affairs Fellowship in International Economics, International Affairs Fellowship in Canada, and International Affairs Fellowship in Japan.
Federal Funding Opportunities
OSP review not required
Sponsor Deadline: February 7, 2018
Award Amount: $4,200 per full-time month. The maximum stipend is $50,400 for a twelve-month period.

The Public Scholar Program supports well-researched books in the humanities intended to reach a broad readership. Although humanities scholarship can be specialized, the humanities also strive to engage broad audiences in exploring subjects of general interest. They seek to deepen our understanding of the human condition as well as current conditions and contemporary problems. The Public Scholar Program aims to encourage scholarship that will be of broad interest and have lasting impact. Such scholarship might present a narrative history, tell the stories of important individuals, analyze significant texts, provide a synthesis of ideas, revive interest in a neglected subject, or examine the latest thinking on a topic. 

Agency for International Development (USAID)
Department of State
National Institutes of Health
National Science Foundation
National Endowment for the Humanities
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For assistance, please contact:
Erin Hale
Senior Research Development Officer
erin_hale@fas.harvard.edu | 617-496-5252

To see previous Social Science Funding Newsletters, please visit our email archive.

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