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Aim and Mission

  • To support emerging scholars through small grants;

  • To promote scholarship with a social policy application; and

  • To encourage projects that address contemporary issues in the social sciences.





Grants are based solely on merit. Each is worth a total of $7,500; $5,000 is awarded initially and $2,500 upon completion of the project.

For grant recipients to be entitled to their second installment, they must show evidence of one of the following:

  1. Acceptance and approval of their dissertation;

  2. Acceptance of an article based on the research by a peer-reviewed journal; or

  3. Invitation to write and publish a book chapter based on the research.


Grants are non-renewable and recipients have five years from announcement of the award to complete their project and claim their final payment.




  • Applicants must be current PhD (or DrPH) candidates who are working on their dissertation;

  • Applicants must not have a PhD; those who do, are ineligible;

  • Applicants must have defended their dissertation proposal or had their topic approved by their department;

  • Applicants can be from any country and any university in the world. US citizenship or residency is not required.




The foundation supports projects with a social policy application on either a global or local level. 


Applications are evaluated based on the Trustees’ assessment of criteria such as: feasibility, applicability, originality, methodology, theoretically informed or empirically rich research, and letters of recommendation. No specific weight is given to any one area. Proposals are evaluated based on overall merit of all aspects of the application.


We encourage applicants to look at the kind of projects we have supported in previous years. See Previous Recipients.


  • Awards are made to individuals, not institutions. If processed through an institution, a waiver for overhead is required.

  • Recipients are expected to acknowledge assistance provided by the foundation in any publication resulting from their research and should notify the foundation with publication details.


  • Grants are issued immediately on receipt of an acceptance letter from the recipient. It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure the grant does not conflict with other funding they have secured. Grants are usually administered in June of the year they are decided.


  • Grant recipients will be publicized on the foundation's website, in appropriate professional media, and a press release to university media offices.  

Special Awards


Each year, the Trustees issue special monetary awards for the most outstanding project in specific subject-matter areas. These awards cannot be applied for directly, and are only granted at the discretion of the Trustees. Special Award recipients receive an additional $1,500, unless otherwise noted:


Donald R. Cressey Award

Criminal Justice and Penology Practices

Eli Ginzberg Award

Health and Welfare, particularly in urban settings


Harold D. Lasswell Award

International Relations and Foreign Affairs


Irving Louis Horowitz Award

Overall most outstanding project

This award carries with it an additional $5,000.


John L. Stanley Award

History and Ethics


Joshua Feigenbaum Award

 Arts, Popular Culture, and Mass Communication


Martinus Nijhoff Award

Science, Technology, and Medicine

Robert K. Merton Award

Addresses the relationship between Social Theory and Public Policy

Trustees' Award

For the most innovative approach in theory and/or methodology

This award carries with it an additional $3,000.

Special Awards
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