NEH Announces New Next Generation Humanities PhD Grant Program

NEH Next Generation Humanities PhD
WASHINGTON, (October 20, 2015)

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) today announced a new grant program designed to inspire innovative models of doctoral education in the humanities that incorporate broader career preparation for PhD candidates.

Data collected by the Humanities Indicators project show that humanities PhDs pursue careers in many different professions, both inside and outside academia. Yet most humanities PhD programs in the United States still prepare students primarily for tenure-track positions at colleges and universities—positions that are increasingly in short supply.

NEH Next Generation Humanities PhD grants seek to address the disparities between graduate student expectations for a career in academia and eventual career outcomes and to promote greater integration of the humanities in the public sphere. These grants will allow colleges and universities to plan for major changes to PhD programs and then implement programmatic initiatives that will transform understanding of what it means to be a humanities scholar.

“Through the Next Generation Humanities PhD grant program, NEH expects to play a leading role in helping humanities doctoral programs prepare students for the challenges and opportunities of the 21stcentury,” said NEH Chairman William D. Adams.  “The knowledge and skills that students acquire through humanities PhD programs can make an important contribution to society in ways that go beyond the customary career track for doctoral students.”

The new grant program offers one-to-one cost-sharing grants, so that recipient institutions must raise or contribute $1 for every $1 of NEH grant funding.

NEH Next Generation Humanities PhD Planning grants support efforts by institutions to bring together faculty, graduate students, administrators and other important constituencies to strategize and produce plans that will transform scholarly preparation in the humanities at the doctoral level.

Planning grants offer one-to-one cost-sharing grants of up to $25,000 for as long as 12 months, for a maximum total grant of $50,000.  Planning themes might include strategies to secure faculty support for PhD reforms or efforts to increase students’ exposure to multiple career paths or encourage collaboration with other departments or non-academic institutions. Application guidelines for NEH Next Generation PhD Planning grants are available at

NEH Next Generation Humanities PhD Implementation grants support institutions in enacting wide-ranging changes in humanities doctoral programs.

Implementation grants offer one-to-one cost-sharing grants of up to $350,000 for as long as 36 months, for a maximum total grant of $700,000.  These grants may be used for programmatic changes to PhD programs such as alterations to dissertation formats or requirements, graduate student funding for activities other than teaching, or the development of systems to track post-doctoral career data for all PhD candidates. Application guidelines for NEH Next Generation PhD Implementation grants are available at  

NEH program staff from the Office of Challenge Grants will conduct a webinar for interested applicants on Thursday, December 3, at 2 PM EST. Click here to register. The application deadline for both Planning and Implementation grants is February 17, 2016.

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