Fellowships in Public Humanities
$5000 Fellowships in Publicly Engaged Humanities
With generous support from the Senior Vice Provost for Research, the Senior Vice Provost for Engagement and Outreach, and the Provost, the UNH Center for the Humanities is offering up to three Fellowships of $5000 each in Publicly Engaged Humanities. These awards will enable individual humanities scholars or teams to undertake collaborative projects, partnering with community or other public organizations, bringing humanities scholarship to bear in the context of advancing democracy, civic life, and the public good.
The program is currently funded for three years; we hope to find funds to extend it beyond its initial term. We are particularly interested in funding initiatives at UNH Manchester as well as the Durham campus.
For examples of publicly engaged projects from our inaugural year, please see our Public Humanities Profiles.
Many universities have encouraged their faculty to undertake engaged scholarship, partnering with communities and public organizations for mutual benefit. This is especially consonant with the mission of land-grant universities, which were created for the public good. Faculty who do engaged scholarship typically represent areas of the university other than the humanities, fields considered to have applied dimensions. Our initiative aims to expand the cohort of scholars who practice engaged work.
Our goal is to provide resources for colleagues whose work demonstrates the importance of the humanities for the public good. The humanities have sometimes been critiqued as insular, not able to speak clearly to audiences beyond small disciplinary groups. More broadly, universities are increasingly criticized as remote from public issues, concerns, and priorities. The Fellowships in Publicly Engaged Humanities will broaden the participation of UNH humanities faculty in engaged work, helping the institution reimagine the nature and scope of engaged scholarship. The Fellowships will be one way to demonstrate the importance and utility of the humanities in public life.
- Sustained work that blends academic humanities expertise and community interests, focusing on mutual benefits and a clearly defined outcome, and leading to a product that exemplifies engaged scholarship
- Project-oriented collaborative and committed relationships or partnerships pairing humanities scholars or teams with organizations at the community level or elsewhere in the public realm
- Work that has the potential to attract external funding
Although these are not required, we are especially interested in proposals that include the following:
- Risk-taking and innovation
- Interdisciplinary collaboration, among humanities scholars or linking humanities scholars to colleagues in the arts, STEM, or social science disciplines
Tenured or tenure-track faculty must lead the project. Student participation in faculty-led projects is welcome.
Community work need not be confined to New Hampshire or even the United States, so long as it represents a sustained relationship and benefits the community with which the scholar is partnering.
The program emphasizes sustained collaboration and partnership with community organizations, mutual respect among academic and community partners, and the recognition that knowledge and expertise are not the exclusive purview of academic practitioners. In that context, the program will not give funding priority to projects such as lectures by faculty in libraries, faculty books written “because the public will be interested,” and other such endeavors, all of which are indisputably valuable but do not demonstrate the kind of ongoing partnerships we intend to encourage.
We are particularly interested in UNH-M’s participation in this program. The city of Manchester should be an especially fertile place for the sorts of projects we expect to support, and we hope that UNH-M faculty will be especially interested in this initiative, as well as Durham faculty who may wish to work in the Manchester area. The UNH STEM Discovery Lab, located on the UNH-M campus, works with K-12 students and teachers, includes language arts among its priorities, and is particularly interested in collaborating with humanities faculty, both in Manchester and Durham. Professor Mihaela Sabin, faculty director, invites faculty to contact her to discuss project ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org. http://manchester.unh.edu/outreach/stem-discovery-lab
The $5000 Awards
The fellowship awards may be used in any way that advances the fellows’ engaged scholarship. In some cases, the funds may support direct project expenses. They may also be paid as direct fellowships, enabling faculty members to devote significant time to the project.
Guidelines for proposals
Proposals should include a narrative of five single-spaced pages outlining the project, situating it in the humanities, demonstrating how it meets the criteria outlined above, and discussing the need for such a project. It should provide information on project participants, community partners, and the terms of the collaboration with an off-campus entity. We encourage the inclusion of a letter of commitment from community partners. Finally, the proposal should discuss the project’s results, including what the community partner will gain, any scholarly product that will result, and how the project is in the public interest.
Please append a c.v. of no more than five pages, a letter of commitment or agreement from the community partner, and a short budget for the $5000 award.
For further information, please contact Burt Feintuch, Director, or Katie Umans, Assistant Director, UNH Center for the Humanities.
email@example.com/603 862 4355
firstname.lastname@example.org/603 862 4356
Proposals should be submitted electronically to the Center for the Humanities by October 13, 2017. Please submit to email@example.com. A panel will consider all proposals with a goal of making up to three awards by the end of November.
Resources for Public Humanities
For information on engaged scholarship at UNH and on a number of other organizations involved in public humanities projects, these links may be useful.