Questions about applying for an IDRF?
The Mellon International Dissertation Research Fellowship (IDRF) offers nine to twelve months of support to graduate students in the humanities and humanistic social sciences who are enrolled in PhD programs in the United States and conducting dissertation research on non-US topics. Eighty fellowships are awarded annually. Fellowship amounts vary depending on the research plan, with a per-fellowship average of $20,000. The fellowship includes participation in an SSRC-funded interdisciplinary workshop upon the completion of IDRF-funded research.
The program is open to graduate students in the humanities and humanistic social sciences—regardless of citizenship—enrolled in PhD programs in the United States. Applicants to the 2016 IDRF competition must complete all PhD requirements except on-site research by the time the fellowship begins or by December 2016, whichever comes first.
The program invites proposals for dissertation research conducted, in whole or in part, outside the United States, on non-US topics. It will consider applications for dissertation research grounded in a single site, informed by broader cross-regional and interdisciplinary perspectives, as well as applications for multi-sited, comparative, and transregional research. Proposals that identify the United States as a case for comparative inquiry are welcome; however, proposals that focus predominantly or exclusively on the United States are not eligible.
The IDRF competition promotes a range of approaches and research designs beyond single-site or single-country research, including comparative work at the national and regional levels and explicit comparison of cases across time frames. The program is open to proposals informed by a range of methodologies in the humanities and humanistic social sciences, including research in archives and manuscript collections, fieldwork and surveys, and quantitative data collection.
Applicants are expected to write in clear, intelligible prose for a selection committee that is multidisciplinary and cross-regional. Proposals should display a thorough knowledge of the major concepts, theories, and methods in the applicant's discipline and in other related fields, as well as a bibliography relevant to the research. Applicants should specify why an extended period of on-site research is critical for successful completion of the proposed doctoral dissertation. The research design of proposals should be realistic in scope, clearly formulated, and responsive to theoretical and methodological concerns. Applicants should provide evidence of having attained an appropriate level of training to undertake the proposed research, including evidence of a degree of language fluency sufficient to complete the project. For more information on the 2016 IDRF competition, please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions.
- Program Director
- Daniella Sarnoff
- Assistant Director
- Elsa Ransom