Arts, Humanities, and Humanistic Social Sciences


Unless otherwise noted, all full proposals to external sponsors must be submitted to the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) five business days in advance of the sponsor deadline.
Questions? Please contact
Caitlin McDermott-Murphy, Research Development Officer: 


Humanities News

For a robust list of Harvard's internal funding opportunities, please see here.

Match your project to a grant program:

I am looking for research support for my project.

I want to visit an archive or library and/or fund my sabbatical leave.

I am a recent PhD looking for a fellowship opportunity.

I want to build the capacity of my home institution to support humanities activities.

I want to create a scholarly edition or reference volume.

I want to combine digital technology with the humanities or preserve a collection and/or make it easier for people to access.

I want to create a website with humanities content.

I want to develop or put on an exhibition or cultural program for the public or engage in community revitalization.

I want to complete and/or publish a scholarly book.

I am an artist or creative writer looking for project support.

I want to host a visiting scholar or artist.


FOR: "his distinctive and defining role in the field of literature and his influential voice in the humanities over four decades." For more information on Professor Greenblatt, view the full press release.

The Holberg Board is now receiving nominations for the Holberg Prize 2017. The Prize is awarded for outstanding scholarly work in the academic fields of the arts and humanities, social sciences, law and theology. For information on how to nominate, please visit Holberg's website.
Deadline for Nominations: June 15, 2016.

NEH's new Humanities Connections program offers grants of up to $100,000 for the development of a series of three or more linked courses focusing on significant humanities content. Humanities Connections projects must involve collaboration between faculty from separate departments or schools within an institution and incorporate meaningful student engagement activities such as undergraduate research projects, opportunities for civic engagement, or a structured experience with community-based, project-based, or site-based learning.
Deadline: October 5, 2016

Deadline: June 8, 2016
Award Amount: up to $150,000 for one to two years

The Lemann Brazil Research Fund supports cross-disciplinary research projects relating to Brazil. Proposals are sought for projects that address: education management and administration; social science and its applications; public administration and policy; technological advances in education; and evidence-based research. 

Consideration will also be given to projects that propose collaboration between Harvard faculty and Brazilian academics in the life sciences, physical sciences and engineering, and basic and applied sciences.

Applications are invited from individuals who hold a faculty appointment at a Harvard school and who have principal investigator rights at that school. Harvard Medical School faculty must hold a faculty appointment with PI rights in one of HMS's basic or social science departments. Faculty may request support for postdoctoral scholars and graduate students from Brazil; and for Harvard postdocs, graduate students, and undergraduates.

Deadline: June 1, 2016
Award Amount: $12,000

The Fromm Music Foundation aims to strengthen composition, the vital source of musical culture, and to bring contemporary concert music closer to the public. The Foundation focuses on bringing about meaningful interaction among composers, performers, and audiences. Specifically, they seek to influence the contemporary musical scene by:  
  • Commissioning young and less-known composers as well as established composers;
  • Sponsoring the annual Fromm Music Foundation at Harvard Concert Series; and
  • Co-sponsoring, together with new music ensembles, premiere performances of Fromm Foundation commissioned works.
The Fromm commission is available for all types of compositions regardless of idiom, instrumentation, style, or the use of technology. Submissions in jazz, hybrid, electronic, or other idioms are welcome. To be eligible, composers must be citizens or residents of the United States.

Deadline: last day of May, August, November, and February
Award Amount: $40,000 for ladder faculty; $5,000 for doctoral students and postdocs

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.

Eligible grant recipients are Harvard University affiliates in the following categories: full time doctoral students, post-doctoral fellows, and ladder faculty.

Humanities Collections and Reference Resources
Deadline: July 19, 2016
OSP Deadline: July 12, 2016
Award Amount: up to $350,000 for up to three years (implementation projects); up to $50,000 for up to two years (foundations projects). Cost sharing is not required; however, the NEH is rarely able to support the full costs of projects.

Thousands of libraries, archives, museums, and historical organizations across the country maintain important collections of books and manuscripts, photographs, sound recordings and moving images, archaeological and ethnographic artifacts, art and material culture, and digital objects. Funding from this program strengthens efforts to extend the life of such materials and make their intellectual content widely accessible, often through the use of digital technology. 

Awards are also made to create various reference resources that facilitate use of cultural materials. 

HCRR offers two kinds of awards: (1) for implementation and (2) for planning, assessment, and pilot efforts (HCRR Foundations grants).

Digging Into Data Challenge
Deadline: June 29, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 22, 2016
Award Amount: up to $750,000 (up to $175,000 if only one U.S. institution participates; up to $200,000 if 2 or more participate)

The T-AP Digging into Data Challenge is open to any project that addresses research questions in the humanities and/or social sciences by using techniques of large-scale digital data analysis and shows how these new techniques can lead to new theoretical insights. Proposals may address any research question in the humanities and/or social sciences, utilizing any data source to do so.

Applicants will form international teams from at least three of the participating countries. In addition, each team must have members from both sides of the Atlantic. Participating countries are: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, United States, Germany, Finland, France, Portugal, Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.

Research and Development
Deadline: June 21, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 14, 2016
Award Amount: up to $75,000 (planning and basic research); up to $350,000 (advanced implementation)

The Research and Development program supports projects that address major challenges in preserving or providing access to humanities collections and resources. These challenges include the need to find better ways to preserve materials of critical importance to the nation's cultural heritage--from fragile artifacts and manuscripts to analog recordings and digital assets subject to technological obsolescence--and to develop advanced modes of organizing, searching, discovering, and using such materials.

All projects must demonstrate how advances in preservation and access would benefit the cultural heritage community in supporting humanities research, teaching, or public programming.

NOTE: This program does not support projects primarily directed at enhancing the preservation of and access to a specific collection or the holdings of a specific institution. For example, projects intending to arrange and describe, digitize, or reformat a humanities collection (or to create a reference resource such as an encyclopedia or atlas) should apply to the Humanities Collections and Reference Resources program.

Strategy & Policy Fellows Program
Deadline: June 17, 2016
OSP Deadline: OSP review is not required for grants awarded directly to individuals
Award Amount: $60,000

The Strategy and Policy Fellows program supports young scholars and policy thinkers on American foreign policy, international relations, international security, military policy, and diplomatic and military history.

Within the academic community, this program supports junior or adjunct faculty, research associates, and post-docs who are engaged in policy-relevant research and writing. The Fellowship program will only consider single-author book projects. It will not consider collaborative projects (e.g., edited or multi-authored books, conference volumes or reports, or a collection of previously published articles, chapters or essays).

An applicant must have a Ph.D. by the time of the deadline, preferably in Political Science, Public Policy, Policy Analysis, International Political Economy, or History.

Research Grants & Scholarships
Deadline: June 15, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 8, 2016
Award Amount: 2,700 euros per month

The Gerda Henkel Foundation supports research projects that focus on the historical humanities, including but not limited to: Archaeology, Art History, Historical Islamic Studies, History, History of Law, History of Science, Prehistory and Early History.

Grants for research projects involve, depending on the type of project, the assumption of costs for personnel, travel, materials and/or other costs. Research projects can also support costs incurred of visiting (foreign) scholars. Those scholars who plan to work on an independent (solo) research project should apply, instead, for a research scholarship.

NOTE: The published application deadline is not valid for smaller funding amounts (max. 15,000 euros). Smaller funding amounts are granted by the Foundation through a simplified procedure with a deliberation time of approximately three to four months.

Project & Presidential Awards
Letter of Inquiry Deadline [required]: June 15, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 8, 2016
Award Amount: up to $150,000 for up to 2 years (Project Awards); up to $35,000 (Presidential Awards)

Project and Presidential Awards provide support primarily for analyzing data and writing up results; the program is particularly interested in innovative projects that collect or analyze new data to illuminate issues that are highly relevant to the Foundation's program goals. These goals include: Behavioral Economics; Future of Work; Race, Ethnicity, and Immigration; and Social Inequality.

The Foundation also encourages projects that are interdisciplinary and combine both quantitative and qualitative research. Proposals to conduct laboratory or 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.

Deadline: June 15, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 8, 2016
Award Amount: the average grant size is between $2,500 and $7,500

The Fuller Foundation primarily funds non-profit agencies that support youth at risk, protect wildlife, and showcase the arts.

In funding the Arts, the Foundation expects its grants to encourage "hands-on" and participatory collaborations between established cultural institutions, artists and communities. Specific program interests include: art for viewing and listening; art education in school; art and performing arts festivals, murals and sculptures that beautify or inspire a community, programs that bring symphony, opera, and theatre to the community; and adult and/or children's museum education programs. 

Applications are accepted from: organizations headquartered in the Boston area (inside 128) and the immediate Seacoast area of New Hampshire. No multi-year grants will be considered.

Deadline: June 15, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 8, 2016
Award Amount: up to $200,000 over one to two year(s); cost sharing is required

The National Historical Publications and Records Commission seeks proposals that promote the preservation and use of historical records collections to broaden understanding of our democracy, history, and culture. This grant program is designed to support archival repositories in preserving and processing primary source materials. The program emphasizes the creation of online tools that facilitate the public discovery of historical records.

The Commission looks to fund projects that undertake one or more of the following activities:
  • Preservation, arrangement, and online description of historical records in all formats;
  • Digital preservation of electronic records and unstable audio or moving image formats.
After completing arrangement and description activities, applicants may also propose to digitize materials to provide online access to collections.

Publishing Historical Records in Documentary Editions
Deadline: June 15, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 8, 2016
Award Amount: up to $200,000 over one to two year(s); cost sharing is required

The National Historical Publications and Records Commission seeks proposals to publish documentary editions of historical records. Projects may focus on the papers of major figures from American history or cover broad historical movements in politics, military, business, social reform, the arts, and other aspects of the national experience. The historical value of the records and their expected usefulness to broad audiences must justify the costs of the project.

The goal of this program is to provide access to, and editorial context for, the historical documents and records that tell the American story. The NHPRC encourages projects, whenever possible and appropriate, to provide access to these materials in a free and open online environment, without precluding other forms of publication.

Grants are awarded for collecting, describing, preserving, compiling, transcribing, annotating, editing, encoding, and publishing documentary source materials in print and online. 

Institute of Advanced Study Fellowship Program
Deadline: June 10, 2016
OSP Deadline: OSP review is not required for grants awarded directly to the individual
Award Amount: IAS provides Fellows with an honorarium (£3,000 for three months or pro rata for shorter stays), plus travel funding; individuals who will experience a loss of income as a result of accepting an IAS Fellowship are eligible to apply for a contribution towards their salary/earnings of the same amount

The Institute of Advanced Study is Durham University's major interdisciplinary research institute, providing a central forum for debate and collaboration across the entire disciplinary spectrum. The Institute seeks to catalyze new thinking on major annual themes by bringing together leading international academics as well as writers, artists and practitioners.

The theme for 2017/18 is Structure, interpreted in its broadest sense--scientifically, symbolically, legally, philosophically, literarily, politically, economically, and sociologically. Applicants may be from any academic discipline and may come from anywhere in the world. Fellowships last three months (October - December 2017 or January - March 2018).

Digital Projects for the Public
Deadline: June 8, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 1, 2016
Award Amount: up to $30,000 for Discovery grants, $100,000 for Prototyping, and $400,000 for Production; all awards are made for a period of one to three years

The Digital Projects for the Public program supports projects that significantly contribute to the public's engagement with the humanities.

Digital platforms--such as websites, mobile applications and tours, interactive touch screens and kiosks, games, and virtual environments--can reach diverse audiences and bring the humanities to life for the American people. This program offers three levels of support for digital projects: grants for Discovery projects (early-stage planning work), Prototyping projects (proof-of-concept development work), and Production projects (end-stage production and distribution work).

While projects can take many forms, shapes, and sizes, your request should be for an exclusively digital project or for a digital component of a larger project.

North American Universities Host German Guest Lecturers
Deadline: June 8, 2016
OSP Deadline: June 1, 2016
Award Amount: DAAD provides the guest lecturer with a stipend (€98-€143/day depending on the location of the host institution) for housing, living expenses, transportation, and the shipment of teaching materials and personal luggage. The North American host institution must commit to providing a monetary honorarium of US $2200 / CDN $2200 per month to the guest lecturer, as well as office space with equipment.

This program provides financial support for the process of hosting German professors and lecturers for short-term teaching engagements at universities in North America. It aims to promote activity in specialized fields, help fill curricular gaps, or act as a stimulus for teaching and research.

The program is open to all disciplines.

Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications of Genomic Research (R01 and R03)
Deadline: June 5, 2016
OSP Deadline: May 30, 2016
Award Amount: unspecified; the scope of the award should match the proposed project; maximum project period is 5 years

This program encourages research applications that identify, analyze, and address the ethical, legal and social implications of advances in genomic research, health care and technology for individuals, families, communities and society more broadly.

To address the broad scope and reach of genomics in society, applications are invited from investigators representing a wide range of disciplines, including but not limited to the social, behavioral and communication sciences, ethics, philosophy, history, economics, and epidemiology as well as the basic, clinical and computational sciences.  

Applications may propose well-integrated single or multi-disciplinary studies using either single or mixed methods. Proposed methods may include, but are not limited to: data-generating qualitative or quantitative approaches, legal, economic and normative analyses, or other analytical or conceptual research methodologies.

Deadline: June 1, 2016
OSP Deadline: OSP review is not required for grants awarded directly to individuals
Award Amount: up to €38,000

The EURIAS Fellowship Programme is an international researcher mobility programme offering residencies in one of the participating 16 Institutes: Berlin, Bologna, Budapest, Cambridge, Delmenhorst, Edinburgh, Freiburg, Helsinki, Jerusalem, Lyon, Marseille, Paris, Uppsala, Vienna, Wassenaar, and Zürich. Applicants may select up to three institutes outside their country of nationality or residence as possible hosts.

Fellowships are mainly offered in the fields of the humanities and social sciences but may also be granted to scholars in life and exact sciences, provided that their proposed research project does not require laboratory facilities and that it interfaces with humanities and social sciences.

At the time of the application, researchers must be in possession of a doctoral degree plus 2 years of full-time research experience after the degree.

COMNAP Antarctic Research Fellowship
Deadline: June 1, 2016
OSP Deadline: OSP review is not required for grants awarded directly to individuals
Award Amount: up to $15,000 (includes travel and subsistence allowance)

The COMNAP Antarctic Research Fellowship is designed to support the professional development of early-career Antarctic researchers and to strengthen international capacity and cooperation in the spirit of the Antarctic Treaty.

This Fellowship supports early-career researchers, scientists, engineers and other professionals to strengthen international capacity and cooperation in fields such as climate, biodiversity, conservation, humanities and astrophysics research.

Core Funding Areas: Small Grant Cycle II
Letter of Inquiry Deadline: May 31, 2016
OSP Deadline: May 24, 2016
Award Amount: $217,400 or less

Four times per year, the Foundation accepts Letters of Inquiry for projects that fall under their Core Funding Areas. A number of topics--including creativity, freedom, gratitude, love, and purpose--can be found under more than one Area. The Foundation welcomes proposals that bring together these overlapping elements, especially by combining the tools and approaches of different disciplines.

The Core Funding Areas are:
  • Science and the Big Questions: includes mathematical and physical sciences, life sciences, human sciences, philosophy and theology, and science in dialogue;
  • Character Virtue Development;
  • Individual Freedom and Free Markets;
  • Exceptional Cognitive Talent and Genius; and
  • Genetics.

Grants for Libraries or Educational Institutions
Deadline: May 31, 2016
OSP Deadline: May 24, 2016
Award Amount: $50,000 to $100,000 (greater or lesser amounts in certain circumstances)

The Foundation considers major grant applications in the fields of libraries, education, hospitals and clinics.
Grants for Libraries: Applications will be considered for resource endowments (print, film, electronic database, speakers/workshops), capital construction, and innovative equipment. Projects fostering broader public access to global information sources utilizing collaborative efforts, pioneering technologies, and equipment are encouraged.
Grants for Educational Institutions: Applications will be considered for: educational endowments to fund scholarships; endowments to support fellowships and teaching chairs; and erection or endowment of buildings and equipment for educational purposes.

Deadline: May 31, 2016
OSP Deadline: May 24, 2016
Award Amount: unspecified

The Foundation's grants support the integration of Russian language, history and culture into global society by promoting the use and teaching of Russian language abroad, by educating foreign audiences about Russia's rich heritage and culture, and by building new and stronger links between ethnic Russian communities abroad and the Russian Federation. 

Islam, the Modern Nation State, and Transnational Movements
Deadline: May 27, 2016
OSP Deadline: May 20, 2016
Award Amount: €2,700 per month

The Islam, Modern Nation State, and Transnational Movements program is aimed at researchers who, with an eye to current developments, are examining the emergence of political movements in the Islamic world at the national and/or transnational level. Historical studies are encouraged and supported, together with projects in the areas of religious, cultural or political science.
Proposals will be supported that address the dynamics between Islamic teachings, Islamism, nationalism and transnational orientations and environments. Project deliverables should be able to make a contribution to diverse and expert discussions in public and political circles.
This program supports projects that fall within five individual research areas:
  • Historical and present day Islamic systems of society and state;
  • The concept of nation, national movements and nationalism in Islamic civilization;
  • Islamic fundamentalism or Islamic emancipation;
  • Transnational civil society movements in the Islamic world; and
  • Islamic states in the international world system. 

NOTE: Unless otherwise noted, all applications to external sponsors must be submitted to the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) for review five business days in advance of the sponsor deadline.

Caitlin McDermott-Murphy
Research Development Officer

To see previous Arts and Humanities Funding Newsletters, please visit our email archive.

The Research Development (RD) team provides resources and support to FAS faculty seeking funding. This support includes: finding funding; proposal development; programs and workshops; and grantsmanship advice and strategy. To learn more, please visit our website or contact Caitlin McDermott-Murphy at or 617-496-2618.