The Humanities Collaboratory is an innovative investment on the part of the university in collaborative, multi-generational humanities scholarship for the academy and the world beyond. Born in the Office of the Provost, housed in LSA, and located in the Hatcher Graduate Library, the Humanities Collaboratory gives generous grants to support new and ambitious forms of humanities scholarship.
Our project grants to date have supported a “Precarity Lab” dedicated to the study of forms of inequality and insecurity generated in the digital age; “From Africa to Patagonia,” an investigation of the language and cultural identity of a community of South African Boers who fled to Patagonia after the Anglo-Boer War in 1902; a multi-valent inquiry into the possibilities in enhanced digital publication in the “Book Unbound;” and “Hyecho’s Journey,” an exploration of the journeys of a young Korean monk moving across the Buddhist world in the eighth century that resulted in an exhibit at the Freer Gallery of Art and a scholarly monograph from the University of Chicago Press.
Two new project grants will start in the fall. They are “Sensing Algorithms,” which contends that algorithms are profoundly cultural and calls into being a new multidisciplinary group that will develop new forms of collaboration, combining traditional humanistic scholarship with other creative practices to better understand these new cultural forms, and “Making African Art,” which explores the social and political milieu from which the field of African art emerged, including the election of John F. Kennedy, the Cold War, the founding of the Peace Corps, African Independence and the Civil Rights Movement.
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What is the Michigan Humanities Collaboratory?
Funded by the Provost’s Office, under the administrative umbrella of the College of Literature, Science and the Arts (LSA), the Michigan Humanities Collaboratory provides resources for University of Michigan humanities scholars to experiment with collaborative, team-based approaches to humanities research, its communication to the broader public, and the training of the next generation of humanities scholars. Led by humanities faculty, teams including other university faculty, librarians, and humanists, undergraduate and graduate students and postdocs, will work together on large-scale projects from development to dissemination as they create team-based project models. We collaborate with and are located in Hatcher Graduate Library, 100 North Hatcher Gallery.
The Humanities Collaboratory offers 5×5 grants for faculty and other research specialists to organize around a theme or topic of shared interest to discuss and explore possible projects.
Proposal Development or seed funding provides support for intergenerational teams to develop project proposals during Spring Term. Project development support includes faculty compensation, graduate student partner compensation, travel, materials, and funding for undergraduate research assistants. Proposal development applications are due in early February each year. Go to the “Funded Projects” menu to review abstracts of current and past grantees, click on the titles to review the original application.
Project funding includes faculty compensation, support for skills training or workshops; GSRA or general research support for graduate and undergraduate students, potential postdoc funding, travel, and materials/supplies. Applications are due in early July each year. All funded projects are required to publicly disseminate the results of the project; a separate proposal plan and budget is submitted at the beginning of the second year of the grant to request funding support for exhibitions, displays, or other public programming dissemination. Go to the “Funded Projects” menu to review abstracts of current and past grantees, click on the titles to review the original application.