Grants | 31 March 2020

Call for Applications: THI Research Clusters 2020-2021


We’re now accepting applications for Research Clusters—don’t miss the deadline on May 1st!

The Humanities Institute’s Research Clusters enable groups of faculty and graduate students to explore new ideas. We fund clusters for up to three years, allowing experimental collaborations and projects to grow into self-sustaining initiatives. Interdisciplinary research breaks down silos so that we can create the dynamic connections across disciplines that are essential today.

For more information on how to apply, visit our Research Clusters page or see below:

The Humanities Institute Research Clusters 2020-2021

Deadline: May 1, 2020

Objective: This program is designed to encourage and support research in any area of the Humanities. In addition to programming (e.g., conferences, workshops, seminars, visiting scholars), we encourage the clusters to view this as seed funding and to think about ways the cluster can serve as an incubator for larger projects in the future (e.g., websites and other digital projects, edited volumes, the establishment of research centers, NEH Summer Seminars, UC multi-campus research groups, etc.) and how they can leverage cluster funds to secure extramural funding. Preference will be given to clusters that have not already received multiple years of funding, though all proposals will be considered.

Strong preference will be given to groups who align with THI’s 2020-2021 theme: Memory.

Number of Awards: TBD; The Humanities Institute Steering Committee will decide the awards.

Amount: Up to $5,000 per cluster.

Eligibility: Groups of faculty from any UCSC Division may apply, as long as some Humanities faculty are involved. Graduate student involvement in the cluster is required, but clusters must be led by faculty PIs. Depending on funding availability, preference will be given to clusters whose PIs are faculty in the Humanities Division.

Duration: Funding is awarded on a year-by-year basis. Any unspent money on June 30, 2021 will be returned to The Humanities Institute. All clusters will have to reapply for funding for 2021-2022.

Reporting Requirement: The Humanities Institute will expect a final 1-page report on July 1, 2021 (or May 1, 2020 if the cluster is reapplying for funds for the following year). This report will detail a) the activities of the cluster, b) how the activities enhanced the work of the faculty and graduate students involved and c) whether the cluster faculty applied for extramural funds (if yes, where; if no, why not).

Staffing: Staff support to the cluster will be included as an in-kind award from The Humanities Institute. Staff support includes event planning, program management, as well as assistance with research development.

Application Requirements:

  1. Cover sheet containing a) name(s) of faculty principal investigator(s), b) title of research cluster, c) amount requested, e) amount of matching funds, if any.
  2. Narrative of no more than 3 pages describing a) the purpose of the cluster, b) the connection to the annual theme, c) the names and affiliations of faculty and graduate students whom you anticipate will be involved, and d) projected activities of the cluster.
  3. Budget.
  4. For ongoing clusters, a 1-page report about 2020-21 activities (see reporting requirement above for details).

Applications must be submitted electronically (in .pdf format) to

Any questions about the program or the process can be addressed to The Humanities Institute Director, Nathaniel Deutsch (