Luce/ACLS Program in Religion, Journalism & International Affairs Collaborative Programming Grants

Grant Details

  • Who may apply: Project's principal investigator must be a scholar in a field of the humanities or social sciences or journalism. Proposed grant activities must connect humanities and social science programs with journalism departments, schools, or initiatives on the same campus, or with the work of an external media organization. Projects must be hosted by a US-based accredited institution of higher education.
  • Award amount: Up to $45,000
  • Term: 12-18 months, to be initiated between July 1 and August 31, 2022
  • Deadline: November 15, 2021
  • Notification timeline: Awards will be announced by March 2022.

ACLS invites proposals for Collaborative Programming Grants offered by the Luce/ACLS Program in Religion, Journalism & International Affairs, made possible by the generous support of the Henry Luce Foundation. The program aims to deepen public understanding of religion by advancing innovative scholarship on religion in international contexts and equipping individual scholars and institutions of higher education with the capacities to connect their work to journalism and the media and to engage audiences beyond the academy.

Grant and Application Information

Grant activities: Proposals are sought for collaborative projects hosted at US-based accredited institutions of higher education with research and curricular strengths in journalism and communication and in the humanistic and social science fields concerned with the study of global religions (including, but not limited to, anthropology, area studies, history, languages and literature, political science, religious studies, and sociology). ACLS will award grants of up to $45,000 to institutions proposing interdisciplinary or cross-institutional collaborations that connect scholarship on religion to journalistic training and practice.

While the grants may support one or more of a broad range of objects for funding, applicants must propose activities that connect humanities and social science programs within their institution with journalism schools, departments, or initiatives, or with external media organizations. Applicants are encouraged to propose activities that build on or extend current curricular and research strengths in relevant disciplinary areas. Successful approaches to such work might include a multimodal slate of campus programming that brings together journalists and religion scholars in workshops, seminars, courses, and public events; a symposium that blends thematic reflections on global religions with practice-oriented sessions on reaching out to audiences beyond the academy; or a course that offers humanities or social science students and/or faculty hands-on training as religion reporters. Proposals may propose a combination of approaches, provided that applications demonstrate how the proposed activities complement one another. See the Luce/ACLS grantee page for examples of successful past projects.

RJIA events: The RJIA program will hold one or more events during the 2022-23 academic year that convene all program-year fellows, the principal investigators and chief collaborators at grantee institutions, and select journalists and public policy experts.

Project timing: Grants may support projects of 12-18 months in duration. Projects must be initiated between July 1, 2022 and August 31, 2022 and completed no later than April 30, 2023. Applications should outline a concrete timeline and identify discrete stages of the project as appropriate.

Selection criteria: Applications will be reviewed by an external advisory committee made up of scholars of religion, international affairs, and journalism. ACLS will award grants to institutions on the following basis:

  • The institution's demonstrated strengths in the targeted fields and capacity to promote programming linking scholarship on religion to journalism curricula, events, or research programs.
  • The feasibility of proposed project plans.
  • The project's sustainability plan and the grant's potential to galvanize further work beyond the award term.

Application requirements: Applications should outline both the intellectual and programmatic ambitions of the project as well as the logistical basis for its success. Applications must include the following components (all of which should be formatted in Times New Roman, size 11 font, and double spaced):

  • An abstract of the proposed project (250 words). 
  • A proposal (of no more than six double-spaced pages). The narrative should include a brief, descriptive title and the following sections:
    • Project Overview: Applicants should explain the proposed project goals and demonstrate how they relate to the aims of the Luce/ACLS program, as well as the overall contribution the project will make toward the greater incorporation of scholarship on religion in journalistic training and practice.
    • Workplan: Proposals should explain, briefly but specifically, what the project participants plan to do and why. In this section, applicants should also explicitly state the means and tools to be used to execute the project, and should demonstrate how project plans will articulate with current faculty, research, and public programming. 
    • Collaboration: Applicants should outline how the principal members of the project team envision the proposed collaboration between humanities and social science programs within their institution and journalism schools, departments, or initiatives, or with external media organizations, as well as any examples of successful prior collaborations between the team members. 
  • A project timeline (no more than two pages). The timeline should outline the development and execution of the project, and include a description of tasks to be accomplished within the grant period. 
  • A budget plan (no more than two pages). The budget should provide a detailed account of the proposed use of the grant funds. ACLS does not require that project participants take a supported research leave (such as course buyout), although grant funds may be used toward this purpose if desired. If grant funds will support course buyout or another type of research leave for project team members, the budget must itemize the funds dedicated toward the salary and benefits replacement of each relevant team member. Grant funds may not pay for institutional overhead; however, direct administrative costs, such as office expenses, space rental, or an honorarium for office assistance, are allowed. The budget plan should also reflect any proposed cost-sharing measures undertaken by the project’s host institution or a third party.
  • A list of the names and institutional affiliations of members of the project team and a description of each member’s role and capacities on the project. Include two-page CVs for principal investigator and other project leaders.
  •  An institutional statement of support from a senior administrator at the institution (e.g., dean, provost, or president). This statement should confirm that the institution's existing infrastructure can support the activities to be undertaken. Though two or more institutions may serve as sites for funded grant activities, one must serve as the lead institution and administer all grant funds.

Applications should be submitted as e-mail attachments in pdf or Word document format no later than November 15, 2021 to Please send all program inquiries and questions to the same address.

This program is supported by a grant from the Henry Luce Foundation's Henry R. Luce Initiative on Religion & International Affairs.