2017 Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s John E. Sawyer Seminars

The Center for Ideas and Society at UC Riverside
Call for Proposals

2017 Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s John E. Sawyer Seminars
On the Comparative Study of Cultures

Following the success of UC Riverside’s 2014 Sawyer Seminar on Alternative Futurisms, the Mellon Foundation has invited UCR to submit one application for consideration to the 2017 Sawyer Seminar grant competition. Interested faculty should submit preliminary proposals to the Center for Ideas and Society, which will host the internal review to select UCR’s single Sawyer Seminar entry.

The Mellon Foundation’s Sawyer Seminars were established in 1994 to provide support for comparative research on the historical and cultural sources of contemporary developments.  The Sawyer Seminars bring together faculty, international visitors, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students from a variety of fields mainly (but not exclusively) in the humanities and social sciences for intensive study of subjects chosen by the participants. The aim of the seminars is to engage productive scholars in comparative inquiry that would (in ordinary university circumstances) be difficult to pursue. The Seminars avoid institutionalizing such work in new centers, departments, or programs and rather serve as temporary research centers.

Sawyer Seminars meet for one year. They provide support for one postdoctoral fellow to be recruited through a national (or international) competition, and for the dissertation research of two graduate students. (It is expected that the graduate students will be active participants in the seminar.) Seminars are also encouraged to invite participants from nearby institutions.

The maximum budget is $225,000. Seminars are not expected to produce a written report. Do not apply directly to the Mellon Foundation. Instead please follow the below internal submission guidelines.

Information Session: January 10, 2017 from 2:30 -3:30 pm in INTS 1111

Internal submission deadline: February 6, 2017

Proposal guidelines:

Please prepare a narrative of no more than 3 pages (single spaced; 12 point font). Include:

  • The names of the PI’s for the seminar
  • A statement of the area of inquiry/subject matter being proposed for the seminar and the cases to be compared (e.g., nations, regions, social aggregates, time periods)
  • An indication of the thematic “threads” that will run through the seminar and of the originality and significance of the central questions to be addressed
  • A list of potential participants, guests and speakers
  • An indication of the way the proposed seminar relates to UCR’s strengths
  • A statement of the way the seminar will engage participants with diverse institutional and disciplinary affiliations (Seminar participants may include faculty in outside disciplines including professional schools.)
  • A statement of the seminar’s potential contributions to graduate education
  • Brief CV’s of PI’s

To apply:

Email your application as a pdf to georgia.warnke@ucr.edu.

PI’s will be notified on or before February 16th of the outcome of the internal competition. The PI’s of the selected project will work with Cassie Riger and Lauren Savord to generate a full narrative and budget by Mellon Foundation deadline of March 31, 2017.

For questions regarding the application and review process, please contact Georgia Warnke, Director, Center for Ideas and Society.

For a list of past Sawyer Seminar awards see: https://mellon.org/programs/higher-education-and-scholarship-humanities/fellowships/sawyer-seminars/funded-sawyer-seminars/

Sawyer Seminar Selection Committee:

Jennifer Doyle
Nalo Hopkinton
Jeanette Kohl
Cassie Riger
Travis Stanton
Kiril Tomoff
Sherryl Vint
Georgia Warnke