ACLS is no longer accepting applications for Luce/ACLS Early Career Fellowships in China Studies. Awardees will be announced in Spring 2024.
In 2023-24, ACLS is offering two types of fellowship for early career scholars to support research, writing, and publicly engaged scholarship. Workshops and events for fellows will be held in 2024 and 2025.
Long-term fellowships are financially supported by the Henry Luce Foundation, with additional funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Democracy demands wisdom. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed on this webpage, do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).
Long-term research fellowships will enable recent PhDs (without tenure and within eight years of the PhD) to take leave from university responsibilities for four to nine months to carry out research and writing towards a significant scholarly product.
Possible project outcomes include, but are not limited to, contributions to the development of one or more of the following: monographs, scholarly articles, conference papers, book chapters, or book on a topic in the humanities or interpretive social sciences. ACLS also encourages projects that have the potential to contribute to:
- Pedagogical tools that make meaningful connections between a scholar’s research and post-secondary teaching.
- Works that bridge scholarly and creative practice.
- Community-engaged projects grounded in scholarly research but geared toward a public audience. Potential or actual community and/or student engagement with the research project is encouraged, as is the dissemination of the research to audiences across higher education.
Early Career fellowships support scholarly research in all disciplines of the humanities and the interpretive social sciences. Research may be conducted on any topic related to cultures, histories, and societies in China, and their influence and impact on communities, countries, and cultures around the world, as required by the research plan. Research on Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Tibet, and Xinjiang is eligible. The study of non-traditional sites (e.g., sites in Africa or Latin America) is also permitted, so long as there is a clearly articulated rationale for the relationship to Chinese or Chinese-language communities and cultures. There are no restrictions regarding time period or methodological approach.
Long-term fellowships emphasize the importance of research conducted in China if travel is possible. Applicants who do not propose travel should explain how they will gain access to sources.
A working knowledge of Chinese is required or knowledge of another language used in China studies (e.g., Tibetan, Uyghur).
The fellowship period must begin between July 1, 2024, and September 30, 2025.
Publicly Engaged Scholarship
ACLS holds the core belief that knowledge is a public good. Applicants are strongly encouraged to consider the broader impact of their research, especially its potential to increase public engagement with humanistic knowledge and scholarship – from media and outreach to engaged research, teaching, and public programming.
Fellows will be required to participate in a public writing workshop in 2024 and 2025. Learn more about publicly engaged humanities at Humanities for All.
The Luce/ACLS Program in China Studies promotes inclusion, equity, and diversity as integral components of merit that enhance the scholarly enterprise. It is a priority that every cohort of fellows and grantees is broadly inclusive of different backgrounds, cultures, and any aspects that make one unique. In China studies we seek balance in regard to national origin, educational background, and current university affiliation, as well as in disciplinary approaches, topics, and historical periods studied.
- Stipend: Minimum $20,000, maximum $45,000 calculated as $5,000 per month for four to nine months’ work accomplished full time.
- Tenure: The fellowship period must begin between July 1, 2024, and September 30, 2025.
- During the fellowship tenure, which must consist of consecutive months, fellows must be on leave from teaching and service. No employment is allowed so that fellows may devote their full time to the project.
- Early Career fellowships support research and writing toward a scholarly product in English.
- Priority will be given to applications that propose research in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Tibet, or Xinjiang. In addition, proposals based on research outside these areas will also be considered. Applicants who do not propose work in China should explain how they will gain access to sources.
- Projects must be in the humanities or interpretive social sciences, but there are no restrictions regarding theme, methodological approach, or time period.
- Stipends may be used for research costs (e.g., travel, access to online archives, conference participation, hiring of research assistance outside the US or Canada) and living expenses (e.g., childcare, other familial responsibilities). The application essay should state how these costs will support the project’s objectives, but no budget is required.
- A final report is required on completion of the fellowship period.
- Applications must be submitted through the ACLS Online Fellowship and Grant Administration (OFA) System no later than 9:00 PM Eastern Standard Time on November 16, 2023.
- ACLS-NYU Shanghai Partnership: Fellows who plan to travel to China may indicate their interest in spending part of their fellowship tenure at NYU Shanghai. In partnership with ACLS, NYU Shanghai may provide office space and help make local introductions. A fellow placed at NYU Shanghai may have the opportunity to organize a research workshop on their project in collaboration with the Center for Global Asia at NYU Shanghai.
- An applicant must hold a PhD from an institution in the United States or Canada, OR be a US or Canadian citizen/permanent resident with a PhD from any institution.
- An applicant must hold a PhD degree conferred no earlier than January 1, 2015.
- If the PhD is not conferred (officially awarded) by the application deadline, the applicant must submit:
- (At the time of application) an institutional statement signed by a university official (dissertation advisor or departmental chair) confirming that the applicant is on schedule to complete the PhD by April 15, 2024.
- (By April 15, 2024) a letter from the applicant’s graduate school confirming that the dissertation has been submitted and approved by the graduate school for conferral according to the university calendar. The applicant is responsible for submitting the dissertation on time in order to meet this requirement.
- An applicant who is not a US or Canadian citizen/permanent resident must have an affiliation, or a long-term regular research or teaching appointment, with a university or college in the United States or Canada.
- Applicants who have obtained tenure, or who have submitted tenure materials for review by the application deadline, are not eligible.
- A working knowledge of Chinese is required or knowledge of another language used in China studies (e.g., Tibetan, Uyghur).
- The project must aim to produce a scholarly text.
- Other support may be accepted during the fellowship tenure.
- Some long-term fellowships will be supported by the NEH. No separate application is required but to be eligible for an NEH award, applicants must meet the following additional requirements:
- Both US citizens and foreign nationals must have lived in the US for the three years immediately preceding November 16, 2023.
- No other NEH support may be accepted during the fellowship tenure.
- Fellows must have never been debarred or suspended by any federal department or agency.
- Projects cannot include material obscene, libelous, offensive, or defamatory (e.g., hate speech, personal attacks, material constituting harassment) in any user-generated content, comments, blog posts, links, and other social media.
- Fellows must not be delinquent on repayment of federal debts (e.g., student loans, federal taxes, child support payments, payroll taxes for household or other employees).
- Any ACLS board members, advisory committee members, selection committee members, officers, and staff are not eligible for one year after the completion of service.
- The application must propose full time research (no less than four consecutive months).
- Fellows receiving NEH funds must submit a final report to both ACLS and NEH.
Applications must be submitted online and must include:
- A completed application form.
- An application essay/project proposal (no more than five double-spaced pages in Arial or Helvetica 11-point font). The essay should discuss:
- The aims of the research project – what it is about and what sources are to be examined.
- The significance of the topic and the project’s contribution to the field of China studies.
- The intended contribution of the research to existing literature in your discipline.
- The research design.
- An assessment of the project’s feasibility.
- The nature of results expected.
- A work plan (no more than one double-spaced page in Arial or Helvetica 11-point font). The work plan should include:
- A timeline for the project, including activity during the fellowship period.
- Identification of the individuals (colleagues relevant to project), institutions, and/or sites to be visited, including archives, libraries, geographical sources, as well as proposed institutional affiliation in China (if any).
- A brief “Plan B” – an explanation of what you will do if you encounter a major obstacle in your plan (e.g., a closed archive, travel restrictions, inaccessible research site).
- A resume (no more than two single- or double-spaced pages in Arial or Helvetica 11-point font).
- A bibliography (no more than two double-spaced pages in Arial or Helvetica 11-point font and with double spacing between entries).
- An applicant’s statement (no more than one single- or double-spaced page in Arial or Helvetica 11-point font) describing the intellectual trajectory and experiences that brought the applicant to the current stage of academic career and that motivate plans for the future. Applicants without US or Canadian citizenship/permanent residency who have just graduated from a PhD program in the US or Canada and are not yet employed/affiliated with a university in North America must describe plans for a career in China studies in the United States or Canada. It will strengthen the application to include mention of applications underway for academic positions, with the names of institutions being considered.
- A list of the applicant’s publications (no more than two double-spaced pages in Arial or Helvetica 11-point font with double spaces between entries).
- Optional supporting materials (e.g., images, musical scores, or other similar supporting non-text materials, without annotation) (no more than two pages).
- No budget is required.
The Luce/ACLS Program in China Studies promotes inclusion, equity, and diversity as integral components of merit that enhance the scholarly enterprise. It is a priority that every cohort of fellows and grantees is broadly inclusive of different backgrounds, cultures, and any aspects that make one unique. In China studies we seek balance in regard to national origin, educational background, and current university affiliation, as well as in disciplinary approaches, topics, and historical periods studied. Please use the applicant’s statement to note any relevant information about your personal background and/or ways in which your proposed research addresses issues related to inclusion, equity, and diversity.
Applications will be reviewed by a panel of scholars in China studies according to the following criteria:
- The research design and intellectual organization of the project.
- The significance of the topic and its potential contribution to China studies.
- The ability of the applicant to accomplish the proposed research, based on academic training and success of previous research projects.
- The feasibility of the plan of work.