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Princeton University
Office of the Dean of the Faculty

University Committee on Research in the Humanities and Social Sciences

Revised August 2013 (Updated July 2014)

Table of Contents

Introduction
Contact
Executive Committee
Who is Eligible
Funds Administered by UCRHSS
Deadlines and Award Notification
Application Guidelines
Application Budget
Redistribution of the Budget
Extensions
Reports

Introduction

The University Committee on Research in the Humanities and Social Sciences (UCRHSS) provides small grants to eligible faculty members in the Humanities and Social Sciences to support their research and scholarly work.Grants are made for a great variety of purposes and the Committee tries to make it as easy as possible to apply for support.Among the most frequent purposes are:

  • Travel and cost of living support for research away from home
  • Student research assistants
  • Subvention of publication

Should you have any questions about the UCRHSS please do not hesitate to call or email the Office of the Dean of the Faculty. We are here to help in any way that we can.

Contact

Sandra K. Johnson, Secretary of the Committee, (609) 258.5230, sandyj@princeton.edu
Kuete Gayibor, (609) 258.3023, kgayibor@princeton.edu

Executive Committee

The University Committee on Research in the Humanities and Social Sciences (UCRHSS) is a faculty executive committee appointed by the Dean of the Faculty. The UCRHSS administers several funds described below which provide assistance for scholarship and research to eligible members. Specific eligibility criteria must be met to qualify for support and all expenses must have a valid business purpose. The Executive Committee (EC) meets two times a year to consider grant requests of more than $700. The EC Secretary may authorize grants of up to $700 at any time throughout the year depending upon the availability of funds. Requests for more than $700 in support of research to be undertaken during the academic year should be submitted in time for the Fall meeting. Similar requests in support of research to be undertaken during the summer should be submitted in time for the Spring meeting. Projects to be undertaken in the early fall of the next academic year and prior to the Fall meeting, should be submitted in time for the Spring meeting. To be eligible to apply for the Spring meeting, the applicant must continue to serve in an eligible full-time rank in the following academic year.

Who is Eligible

Full time, non-visiting, Professors, Associate Professors, Assistant Professors, Emeritus faculty, Instructors, Senior Lecturers, Lecturers and members of the Society of Fellows.

Funds Administered by UCRHSS

The UCRHSS administers several funds described below and strongly encourages you to apply directly to one of the funds.

  • University Research Fund

    This fund can provide limited assistance for scholarship and research.

  • Anonymous, Undergraduate Research Assistants in Humanities and Social Sciences Fund

    Support from this fund is restricted to undergraduate research assistants only. The Committee encourages you to consider utilizing undergraduate research assistants for your research project by applying for this fund.

    The proposal and award must meet the following criteria:

    A student holding a research assistantship supported by the Anonymous Fund may be paid for doing as many as, but no more than, 320 hours of research assistance in an academic year and for as many as, but not more than, 520 hours of research during the summer. Payments for stipends shall be twenty percent above the prevailing hourly rate for research assistance, that rate being adjusted to take account of the skills and experience that the research assistant brings to the work. Eligibility for an assistantship supported by the Fund shall normally be limited to students who are candidates for the degree of Bachelor of Arts at Princeton.

  • William Hallam Tuck ’12 Memorial Fund

    Requests for support from the Tuck Fund must include a description of how your work abroad will be incorporated into your instructional activities. The fund can be used to provide resources to “faculty members who desire to travel abroad to enhance their knowledge of their teaching capabilities. Consideration is also given to those members working in the study of developing countries and applying their skills to helping those countries.”

Deadlines and Award Notification

Deadline date Meeting Anticipated Award Notification date
October 15th Fall December 1st
March 15th Spring May 1st

If the deadline date falls on a weekend, the due date will be the next business day. Applications received after the deadline date may be deferred to the next meeting of the EC. Applications for under $700 may be submitted at any time.  Click here for the application.  All department applications over $700 should be submitted at the same time using the DOF dropbox.  To submit documents to the Dean of the Faculty:

  1. Map the following shared drive: \\notman\DOFdropbox\.  If you need help with mapping the shared drive please ask your SCAD for assistance.
  2. Create a folder on your desktop using the naming convention: XXX-UCR where XXX is your department's three letter abbreviation.
  3. Save the completed applications in the folder.  Each application should be a separate file using the naming convention: LastName FirstName application.
  4. Within this folder save the Chair Memo using the naming convention: XXX Chair Memo.
  5. When submitting reports or multiple documents for the same faculty member, please create a sub-folder using the naming convention: LastName FirstName and save all documents within that folder.  Common document names are: Final Accounting Form or Written Report.
  6. To submit your department's documents to the Dean of the Faculty, drag and drop the XXX-UCR folder into the DOF dropbox.  For confidentiality reasons and to ensure proper submission please do not place any documents outside of your XXX-UCR folder in the dropbox.
  7. You will know that your documents have been received when you no longer see your XXX-UCR folder in the dropbox.

Awards granted from the University Research Fund will be established in your department series of accounts. Awards granted from the Tuck Fund and the Anonymous Fund will be established in a Dean of the Faculty series of accounts. In both cases, the department manager will be automatically granted access to the award within the Information Warehouse for all awards granted to faculty in the department.If the department manager wishes to delegate access to another staff member, the appropriate form(s) should be completed and forwarded to the Office of the Dean of the Faculty, 9 Nassau Hall.

Award notices are normally sent by December 1st and May 1st. Included with the notice will be the Grant Accounting form. This form is specific to your award so please take care to retain this document as it will be needed when you submit your final reports to the EC at the conclusion of the grant period. The Grant Accounting form includes the start and end dates of your award, the detailed budget, the project grant number, specific restrictions on the award and the due date for the reports.

Future requests for funding will not be considered by the EC until all reports are received from previously completed grants. Your department chair and department manager are copied on the award notice and grant accounting form. 

Expenses incurred on behalf of the award should be processed in the same manner similar expenditures are processed within your department. Please contact your department manager for assistance. Students employed under the award must be paid using the Time Collection System.

Application Guidelines

1.   Requests for grants should be submitted on application forms available on the Dean of the Faculty website. The application should be completed in detail and must be submitted to the chair of your department for his/her endorsement. Requests without a chair’s endorsement will not be considered by the EC. The chair should submit all applications at one time along with the summary memo requested by the EC.

2.     All applications must include the following sections and should be limited to 4 – 6 pages. 

a.   Title and description of the project
b.   Results from previous grants
c.   The following items must be addressed in your proposal:

i.  Present state of the project
ii.  Probable duration of the project in its current phase
iii.  How you are utilizing your discretionary research fund for the current year
iv.  The amount of your discretionary research fund available to support the proposal

d.   Endorsement by the department chair
e.   Other sources of support (see #3 below)
f.   Proposed budget

3.   Your application must include details related to other sources of support to which you have applied or have already received a commitment of support from.

Applicants are expected to fully explore other sources of support, both inside and outside the University and including your department, before requesting support from the UCHRSS, particularly in connection with projects requiring sizable expenditures. This should include work-study funds for research assistance. The EC is favorably disposed to match departmental support and grants to complement other support will be made whenever possible.

Specifically, the EC is interested to know if your application has been submitted to the following sources and in some cases may refer your application to these sources for consideration prior to review by the EC or in lieu of review by the EC.

a.   250th Anniversary Fund for Innovation in Undergraduate Education (Dean of the College)
b.   Barr Ferree Foundation Publication Fund (Art & Archaeology)
c.   Global Collaborative Networks Fund (Council on International Teaching and Research)
d.   PIIRS Research Communities (Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies)
e.     Stanley J. Seeger Fellowships for Research in Greece (Program in Hellenic Studies)

4.   In general, lower priority will be assigned to repeated requests for support of what is essentially the same phase of the same research project. However, the EC recognizes the complex needs of long-term projects. The scope of such projects should be outlined in the initial request for support so that the EC can gauge the extent of support it may be able to provide over time. By the same token, requests for additional support of a multi-phased project must include a detailed statement that outlines what was accomplished during the earlier grant phases and how the new proposal differs from previous phases.

5.   The UCRHSS will not consider:

a.   Requests for archaeological projects.
b.   A new application when the applicant has not submitted the reports on previously completed grants.
c.   An application from a member who will not continue to serve in an eligible full-time rank in the following academic year. Eligible ranks are listed in the ‘Who is Eligible’ section of these guidelines.
d.   More than one research project per applicant per meeting.
e.   Any research project that is part of a doctoral dissertation prior to the completion of the degree.
f.   An application without an endorsement statement from the chair.
g.   Requests for research assistance that result in a commercial product such as a textbook.
h.   Requests for travel assistance for anyone other than the applicant except in the case of a finalizing meeting with a collaborator which may be permitted for one trip on a case-by-case basis.
i.   Requests for assistance to fund Festschrifts.
j.   Requests to purchase equipment of any kind.
k.   Requests for assistance of less than $150.
l.   Requests for travel to attend conferences, learned society meetings or for residence in or near the applicant’s home.

Application Budget

Please use the following guidelines for preparing your application budget.

1.   CASH ADVANCES — Cash advances are only permitted for travel and cost of living budget items and may not exceed the total amount awarded for these categories. If you wish to draw on your grant prior to your trip please complete a cash advance voucher, including a justification for the cash advance, and submit it to the Secretary of the Committee, 9 Nassau Hall. Cash advances are subject to University policy which requires you to account for the advance within 120 days of incurring the expense. If the advance is not accounted for within 120 days, the amount is subject to being recorded as personal income and may be deducted from your paycheck. Please contact your department manager for assistance.

2.   COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH — In cases of collaborative research with colleagues of other institutions, the EC requests detailed clarification of the use of the funds. A definition of the respective responsibilities and support available for the applicant must be indicated in the grant proposal. Such projects will be evaluated carefully to see that resources are available to the collaborator from their institution, to support portions of the project. In general, lower priority will be assigned to costs associated with faculty research collaboration.

3.   COST OF LIVING DIFFERENTIAL (COL) — The cost of living differential is not the equivalent of a per diem and is intended to support a portion of the applicant’s daily living expenses such as lodging and meals. In many cases it will not cover those expenses in full. Separate requests for lodging, meals or other daily living expenses will not be considered. 

a.   For periods of two weeks or less the maximum COL that may be requested is $50 per day.
b.   For periods of more than two weeks to less than a full month the maximum COL that may be requested is $1,400 divided by 30 x the number of travel days rounded up to the next $50, not to exceed $1,400.
c.   A maximum of $1,400 may be requested per full month of travel.

If the actual travel is for a period less than the original budget request, an adjustment must be made to the maximum COL support charged to the grant per the above guidelines.

4.   INDEXING — Editorial and related services (such as proofreading) generally are supported only if the work is undertaken by student research assistants. Indexing services will be reimbursed at standard professional rates if contracted outside. Priority will be given to the use of undergraduate student research assistants.

5.   RESEARCH ASSISTANTS — A strong effort should be made to employ Princeton students as research assistants. If Princeton students cannot be employed, all other research assistants will be subject to the benefit rate which will be charged against the total grant awarded by UCRHSS. The grant will be charged the applicable benefits rate in addition to the hourly amount, which you will have to accommodate within the funding awarded to you by UCRHSS. You must also explore the availability of work-study funds before submitting your application. The EC stresses the need for a very detailed explanation of the research assistant’s duties. Please distinguish the research assistant’s duties as mechanical, perfunctory, scholarly, etc. as opposed to the primary work of the author. The EC looks favorably on original archival research conducted directly by the applicant. Applications that include undergraduate research assistants should be directed to the Anonymous Fund.

Graduate and undergraduate research assistants are paid at the rates set by the Office of Student Employment. Please contact this office for guidance on hourly rates for your specific project.

6.   RESEARCH MATERIALS — Materials purchased with funds granted by UCRHSS revert ultimately to the University. The applicant must refer all materials to the Associate Librarian for Reference and Collection Development to determine whether the University wishes ultimate possession. Requests for funds to purchase equipment of any kind are not permitted and will not be considered.

7.   SUBVENTION —  The EC will consider support for subvention of the initial publication of the product of primary research. However, UCRHSS can seldom cover the total cost of publication. Applications must include a copy of the publisher’s request for the subvention along with a detailed budget. Applications without the publisher’s budget information will not be considered. Translation of materials previously published by the applicant will not be supported. 

Many subvention requests to UCRHSS also fit the guidelines for the Barr Ferree Foundation Publication Fund administered by the Department of Art & Archaeology. Please look first to this fund for subvention assistance, if applicable. In many cases, the EC will refer eligible applications to the Barr Ferree Fund first, before considering the application under UCRHSS.Instructions for applying to the Barr Ferree Fund can be found on the Department of Art & Archaeology website.

8.   TRAVEL — Where travel is essential for research, UCRHSS will consider a request for reimbursement of expenses for:

a.   The cost of round trip air transportation at the lowest applicable rate and subject to the University Travel policy. Business class airfares are not permitted under any grant however the applicant may charge the difference between the economy fare and the business fare to discretionary funds. Documentation of the fare comparison must be obtained at the time of purchase and provided for reimbursement from the grant. Please keep in mind that discretionary resources are primarily made available to support research and scholarly activities and resources that are utilized to pay for business class airfares must be identified as the highest priority use for those funds.  

b.   Transportation to and from airports should be at a reasonable cost level and must meet the University Travel Policy guidelines for the type of transportation employed.

Support may be requested for other forms of research related travel but is not provided for conferences, learned society meetings or for residence in or near the applicant’s home. For faculty members on leave of absence, transportation will be reimbursed from the leave location; but is not for travel to/from the Princeton area or the applicant’s home. Requests for assistance for more than one major research trip in a single year will be given low priority.

9.   TRANSLATION — Support is provided for translating primary research materials and for proofreading manuscripts prepared by a non-native speaker for first-time publication; such support is generally through the use of student research assistants, preferably undergraduate students whenever possible.

Requests for support of full translation services for first-time publication, whether the material is prepared in English but will be published in other languages; or is prepared in other languages but will be published in English, will be carefully reviewed. Given the potential expenses associated with such projects, especially those involving monographs, UCRHSS generally expects such costs to be borne by the publisher. When funds are awarded for this purpose, they will be treated as a publication subvention.

Support is not provided for secondary publication in other languages of material originally published in English nor for secondary publication in English of material originally published in other languages when the applicant has received support from UCRHSS for the first publication.

10.  UNALLOWABLE EXPENSES

a.   Any expense that is part of a doctoral dissertation prior to the completion of the degree.
b.   Research assistance that results in a commercial product such as a textbook.
c.  Travel assistance for anyone other than the applicant except in the case of a finalizing meeting with a collaborator which may be permitted for one trip on a case-by-case basis.
d.   Any expense that is in support of Festchrifts.
e.   Equipment of any kind

Redistribution of the Budget

Effective with the Spring 2014 award cycle:

With the exception of awards from the Tuck Fund and the Anonymous Fund, budgets may be redistributed among line items without prior approval and at the discretion of the awardee to support the project as proposed.   Departments are responsible for ensuring that source fund restrictions are met.   Awards from the Tuck Fund and the Anonymous Fund may only be used for the budget categories as awarded; budgets may not be redistributed under these two restricted sources.  

This additional flexibility allows the awardee to adjust the project expenses as needed however it does not mean that the funds may be used to support other projects or expenses that are beyond the scope of the proposal for which the grant was awarded.   In all cases, the total expenses may not exceed the total budget awarded.   Funds not expended within 180 days of the end date of the award will automatically revert back to the Committee.

In case of doubt on redistribution, please contact the Office of the Dean of the Faculty.

Extensions

Should you wish an extension of the grant period beyond the end date specified on the grant accounting form, please make this request in writing, and direct it to the Secretary of the Committee before the grant is due to terminate. Your request should outline the reasons for the extension and the anticipated end date required to complete the project.

Reports

The UCRHSS requires that you submit the following reports within one month of the end date of your grant. Future requests for funding will not be considered by the EC until all reports are received from previously completed grants. Your department manager is likely the best resource for assistance with completing the report and accounting form. To complete the reporting requirements, the following items should be submitted via the DOF dropbox.

A.   Completed Grant Accounting form
B.   A brief written summary of the use and product of the grant
C.   If the research results in the publication of a book, journal, CD, DVD or other work of art, the EC requests a copy forwarded to the Secretary of the Committee, 9 Nassau Hall

To submit documents to the Dean of the Faculty:

  1. Map the following shared drive: \\notman\DOFdropbox\.  If you need help with mapping the shared drive please ask your SCAD for assistance.
  2. Create a folder on your desktop using the naming convention: XXX-UCR where XXX is your department's three letter abbreviation.
  3. Create a sub-folder using the naming convention: LastName FirstName and save all documents separately within that folder.  Common document names are: Final Accounting Form or Written Report.
  4. To submit your department's documents to the Dean of the Faculty, drag and drop the XXX-UCR folder into the DOF dropbox.  For confidentiality reasons and to ensure proper submission please do not place any documents outside of your XXX-UCR folder in the dropbox.
  5. You will know that your documents have been received when you no longer see your XXX-UCR folder in the dropbox.

All financial activity including the clearing of deficits, if necessary, must be completed no later than one month after the end date of the grant. Departments are responsible for reconciling with the Office of Finance & Treasury any deficits that appear.

Unless you have requested an extension and it has been approved by the Office of the Dean of the Faculty, any unexpended funds remaining at the end of the grant period will automatically revert to UCRHSS after 180 days. Grants may be rendered inactive as early as one month after the end date.