© photo by Jeff Day

Digital Humanities Seed Grants

CALL FOR PROPOSALS: The NYU Libraries, The Center for the Humanities, and NYU Research and Instructional Technology invites applications for a fourth series of Digital Humanities Seed Grants. These grants are intended to fund the initial development of new research projects that will analyze digital sources, apply algorithmic methods to humanities data, or create digital publications, exhibits, or websites. The goal of the program is to seed projects that may go on to receive greater funding from other sources or otherwise build NYU’s institutional capacity in Digital Humanities work. 

We especially welcome projects that give voice or expression to underrepresented communities, or that engage with the urban fabric of the cities in which NYU has campuses.

Grants may range in size between $5,000 and $20,000. Collaborative projects are encouraged, but must include at least one NYU faculty member in the humanities.

ELIGIBILITYProposals must include at least one full-time NYU faculty member working in the humanities; collaborative projects are highly welcome. There are no restrictions on school, department, or rank*, but proposals from faculty in interdisciplinary departments may wish to identify how their research identifies with the humanities. Graduate students seeking funding should apply under the DH Graduate Fellowship program.

Equal Opportunity Statement: NYU-funded programs do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, or age. For more information, please visit https://www.nyu.edu/about/policies-guidelines-compliance/equal-opportunity.html.

[*Please note that NYU policies do not allow adjuncts to serve as primary investigators on external grants. They may serve as a co-investigator and collaborator. Continuing Contract Faculty are eligible to serve as primary investigators under certain conditions. While we encourage faculty of all ranks to apply for this internal seed grant, please be advised that adjuncts who go on to apply for external funding will need an eligible collaborator to serve as the primary investigator.]

REVIEW PROCESSApplications will be reviewed by a faculty committee with experience in Digital Humanities projects. Projects will be judged on scholarly potential, technical feasibility, sustainability of any scholarly outputs produced, and their potential to serve as the foundation of some longer-term research project. The review committee will meet in Spring 2023 and awards will be announced in April 2023.

The application period for this grant closes on March 12, 2023; we anticipate a fifth round will be solicited next year.


December 2022: CFP Circulated

March 12, 2023 (11:59 pm EST): Applications due.

March 2023: Review panel meets for evaluation period.

April 2023: Decisions announced, funds available for summer work.

June 2023: Orientation session and project planning (i.e. grantees speak with department administrators, NYU Libraries, and/or NYU Research and Instructional Technologies to formalize grant plans).

September 1, 2023: Funds available.

August 31, 2024: Project end date, funds must be spent down.

October 2024: Grantees present project at Digital Humanities Showcase.

OBLIGATIONSPrior to availability of funding, project members will consult with appropriate staff at NYU Libraries or Research Technology about their plans for creating and sustaining any digital resources.

Grantees will be required to give a brief five minute presentation to the NYU committee and DH community at the Digital Humanities Showcase, after the completion of the grant cycle. During the grant cycle, grantees will be asked to provide project updates for purposes of program administration and outreach.

Additionally, grantees who receive funding may be called upon to serve on the review panel the following year.

FUNDING MANAGEMENT: Grants may range in size between $5,000 and $20,000. Grantees will be provided with a budgeted chartfield and the grantee’s academic unit will be responsible for administering the funds. All expenditure must be in compliance with University, School or Department fiscal regulations, whichever is most stringent.

DEADLINE: Please check back with us in the spring 2023 semester to apply for a 2024-25 award.

APPLICATION PROCESS: Proposals should not exceed three pages, plus a single-page budget summary, and any necessary letters of commitment. Successful projects will generally address the following elements:

Abstract summarizing the project in 200 words (this may be used in funding announcements).

Research agenda, including an intellectual justification of the project and its significance to humanities research.

Environmental scan describing projects informing the one proposed here.

Work plan giving a timeline of the agenda to be pursued, including key dates and milestones.

Human subjects plan if the work would require IRB (note that most humanities research will not).

List of participants, clearly spelling out their names, roles, and qualifications. In cases where a role is defined but no individual has yet been identified (e.g., ‘web developer’ or ‘undergraduate research assistant’), please provide a one-paragraph description of the person’s role.

Sustainability plan, where relevant, explaining how digital assets created by this project will be managed and preserved. For a sense of full sustainability plans, see statements from NEH and IMLS. Applicants are encouraged to consult with Digital Scholarship Services about the feasibility of any plans. A preference will be given to projects that make any resources (scholarship, code, or data) openly available unless they give a justification here of the ways such openness would be detrimental to individuals or communities.

Future agenda describing the goals for this project beyond the granting period. This may include relevant granting programs for a larger version, a description of the impact or future use of resources created in the grant period. Projects will be given preference that hold promise to expand NYU’s institutional capacity to support and create high-quality Digital Humanities research. How do you plan to sustain the results of the project beyond the funding period?

Single page budget. Grants may range in size between $5,000 and $20,000. Permissible expenses include student stipends, course buy-outs, partial summer salary, and specific equipment, server time, or hosting. Personal computer purchases are not permitted. Final awards may be altered at the recommendation of the evaluation committee.

LETTERS OF COMMITMENT: Faculty requesting a course release must include a letter from their department chair (or, for Gallatin applicants, dean) indicating the department’s willingness to free the grantee from teaching assignments. It should specify the proposed course release and resulting course assignment and describe how the department will address the impact, if any, on the department’s undergraduate program.

MORE INFORMATION: Please address any questions or requests for consultations are available to dh.help@nyu.edu.