Skip to main content

Collaborative Research Grants

Division of Research Programs

Receipt Deadline December 6, 2017 for Projects Beginning October 2018

Updated guidelines will be posted at least two months in advance of the deadline listed above.

In the meantime, please use the guidelines for the previous deadline, to get a sense of what is involved in assembling an application.

Brief Summary

Collaborative Research Grants support interpretive humanities research undertaken by two or more collaborating scholars, for full-time or part-time activities for periods of one to three years. Support is available for various combinations of scholars, consultants, and research assistants; project-related travel and archival research; field work; and technical support and services. All grantees are expected to disseminate the results of their work to the appropriate scholarly and public audiences.

Eligible projects include

  • research that significantly adds to knowledge and understanding of the humanities;
  • conferences on topics of major importance in the humanities that will benefit scholarly research; and
  • archaeological projects that emphasize interpretation, data reuse, and dissemination of results.

Information about Preliminary Draft Proposals

Prospective applicants may submit a draft of their proposal for staff review (submission of draft proposals is optional) no later than October 15.

What’s New for 2016

NEH will reject applications with narratives exceeding 25 pages.

NEH will reject applications with appendices exceeding 35 pages (except for applications for U.S. archaeology projects submitting information to comply with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act).

Project directors and co-project directors are limited to one submission per application deadline, and may not hold more than one award at a time from the Division of Research Programs.

The project director must be the lead scholar and must devote a substantial percentage of time to the project, whether or not he or she is supported by NEH funds.

Projects that focus on tools, digital tools, databases, visualizations, and maps without proposing substantive interpretive scholarship are ineligible.

Archaeology projects that engage in data reuse are strongly encouraged.

No more than one conference may be proposed per application, and NEH funds will not support additional research activities by conference participants.

Program Statistics

In the last five competitions the Collaborative Research program received an average of 127 applications per year. The program made an average of ten awards per year, for a funding ratio of 8 percent.

The number of applications to an NEH grant program can vary widely from year to year, as can the funding ratio. Information about the average number of applications and awards in recent competitions is meant only to provide historical context for the current competition. Information on the number of applications and awards in individual competitions is available from


Contact NEH’s Division of Research Programs at 202-606-8200 and Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing can contact NEH via Federal Relay (TTY users) at 800-877-8399.