Secure financial support to offset the cost of graduate school as you develop research and work toward a career in academia.
The Humane Studies Fellowship (HSF) is a non-residency, renewable award of up to $15,000 per year to assist students enrolled or planning to enroll in full-time PhD programs. HSF funding is available for the 2021-2022 academic year and summer 2021. Applicants can request funding for the academic year and/or summer within the application.
Applications Open: August 1, 2020
Deadline: December 1, 2020
Decisions Announced: February 1, 2021
Humane Studies Fellows not only gain financial aid, but also connect with IHS and our network of scholars working to advance classical liberal ideas in the academy. This includes access to academic advising and invitations to future career development seminars, research workshops, discussion colloquia, and other networking events.
Accepted Fellows research a broad range of topics from migration and 18th-century property rights to bioethics and environmental policy. IHS welcomes scholars working in unique and diverse research areas. We are looking for anyone doing exciting classical liberal research in the humanities and social sciences. Apply today!
A few examples of the research interests of previous Humane Studies Fellowship include (but are not limited to):
- The displacement of civil society by the welfare state
- The role of patient autonomy in bioethics
- Impediments to economic growth in developing countries
- The relationship between U.S. presidential politics, fiscal policies, and economic performance
To be eligible to apply for the Humane Studies Fellowship, you must:
- Be enrolled full time in a PhD program at any institution for the 2021-2022 academic year.
- Have a research interest that contributes to the advancement of classical liberal scholarship.
Previous Humane Studies Fellowship applicants and winners who will be enrolled as full-time PhD students in the 2021-2022 academic year are welcome to apply. Prior participation in IHS programs is not required. The fellowship is open to PhD students at any university – applicants do not need to be enrolled at George Mason University to be eligible. International students are eligible; however, preference is given to applicants who live or study in the United States, Canada, and/or the United Kingdom. Qualifying fields of study include economics, political science, philosophy, law, history, sociology, and similar disciplines in the social sciences and humanities. We generally do not fund students studying the natural sciences, medicine, or engineering.
IHS supports a diverse collection of graduate students across a wide range of academic disciplines within the humanities and social sciences. Larger awards of $6,000 – $15,000 are highly competitive and generally reserved for late-stage graduate students who have demonstrated academic excellence and publication success with highly relevant research that advances the classical liberal tradition.
Applicants are eligible to apply for both terms. Please note summer funding is highly competitive. If you apply for both terms, strong applications must clearly articulate a research agenda or plan to use the funds for each award term.
For more information, visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.
Fellowship recipients are required to show proof of full-time enrollment at the beginning of the fall semester and during the academic year, and must either present a paper at an academic conference, or have a paper ready for submission to a peer-reviewed journal. Please note that presentation at a future graduate student conference or an IHS Research Workshop is acceptable.
The Application Process
Applications for summer 2021 and academic year 2021-2022 funding will open on August 1. Applicants must submit their candidacy by December 1, 2020 for consideration.
Each essay should be 500 words or fewer.
- Explain your research agenda as if speaking to a colleague in your field and why it is important.
- How do you plan to use your Humane Studies Fellowship award?
- Explain a current or prospective paper or research project you will complete as part of this fellowship, and how it advances an understanding of classical liberal ideas.
To complete the application for the Humane Studies Fellowship, you must upload the following documents:
- A recent writing sample of 3,000 words or fewer. Partial samples of longer works are acceptable.
- An official or unofficial electronic transcript from your current or most recent institution.
- Two letters of recommendation are required for this application. On the application, please provide the name and email of two references. When you submit your application, we will send them an email with a link to submit a letter of recommendation. Letters of recommendation are due by December 15, 2020.
- If applicable, please upload your dissertation proposal.
Supporting documents must be uploaded to the application as electronic files (.doc, pdf, etc.). We do not accept applications submitted by mail. It is recommended that you begin collecting supporting materials early, as certain items might take time to compile. Instructions on how to submit supporting materials are listed at the end of the online application.
Two letters of recommendation are required for this application. On the application, please provide the name and email of two references. When you submit your application, we will send them an email with a link to submit a letter of recommendation.
If you have any questions regarding the application process, please reach out to us at HSF@TheIHS.org.