Seed Grants

Support for projects that explore significant social challenges, employing humanities or transdisciplinary methodologies.


IHR Seed Grants are awarded at individual and team levels to ASU faculty or staff in the humanities (though external scholars are always welcome to participate as consultants). The Seed Grant program is designed to provide support for projects that advance the IHR’s mission of fostering research that addresses or explores significant social challenges in the past, present, and future, employing humanities or transdisciplinary methodologies. The Institute supports projects that demonstrate intellectual merit, potential impact on scholarship, and strong prospects of receiving external funding. Seed Grants fund 12 months of work at two levels: individual (up to $5,000) and team ($9,000).

Applications due April 2nd, 2018

What are some possible outcomes?

  • Conferences, symposia
  • Invited guest scholars
  • Publications
  • External grant support
  • Public engagement


What types of projects are funded? 

  • All time periods: historic to contemporary
  • Unlimited geographic locations: global to local
  • Significant humanistic work as well as work at disciplinary intersections: humanities + science, art, health, technology, etc.
  • Enhanced access to scholarly resources 
  • Team-based and single-PI research 

Seed Grant Projects

Domestic Boundaries: Marriage and Immigration Law in U.S. History

Although many regard the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 as the first law that emphasized marriage and family reunification priorities in immigration, this project demonstrates that marriage has always played a pivotal yet overlooked role in the formation of American immigration policy. It highlights the various historical actors - men and women, state agents and civilians, citizens and immigrants - who negotiated ideas about and performance of marriage at our nation's borders.

En Tiempos Peligrosos/In Dangerous Times: Digitizing Women's Literary, Charitable and Political Networks from the Spanish Civil War to the Cold War

This online archive features more than 200 previously hidden, uncatalogued letters and photographs that reveal the friendship between the 20th century’s three most influential Spanish-speaking women.

Enmei (Long Life): A Dance and Aging Project

Enmei (Long Life): A Dance and Aging Project interweaves the collection and analysis of narratives, storytelling and dance making to examine the ways in which different cultures value (or devalue) the aging body. Mid- to late-career dance artists and scholars from the U.S. and Japan will bring their varied life – and bodily -- experiences together to explore how cultural ideas about aging and gender inform the lives, embodied experience, and wellness of female dancers (and, by extension, of non-dancers).

Foundations of Resilience: Libraries as Critical Infrastructure for Disaster Response and Readiness

How do we prepare for plausible futures that we cannot envision?

Jewish Latin America: New Cinematic Horizons

This research informs part of a larger book project: Jewish Latin America: New Cinematic Horizons. In particular, this project investigates Argentine film industry practices, Jewish film festivals and their role in the proliferation of Jewish themed film. It is also documenting the significant diasporic Jewish communities that have “returned” to Israel, and their representation within that industry. Some of the larger questions that will drive this research will be a discussion of films with incidental Judaism vs. films that act to translate the culture to the national audience.


Materializing the Invisible: Transforming ASU Tempe campus to an open-air museum to explore the impact of time depth on community sense of place

‘Materializing the invisible’ is a research and public engagement project that seeks to make the archaeology of ASU’s Tempe campus accessible to its proximate and broader community. By transforming the campus into an open-air museum where the past can be experienced in a variety of ways that are integrated into the quotidian experiences of campus life, we aim to create a public conversation of what long-term heritage is, how it affects our sense of place and belonging in the present, and how it can transform the way we imagine our future.

Citizenship, Freedom and Gender in Morocco

This seed grant will illuminate the connections between Kharbusha’s protest (arguably the first female modern political prisoner), which occurred on the eve of colonial rule, and the call to reform the Mudawwana (Code of Personal Status) in 1993. Both events demonstrate multiple aspects of women’s agency that challenged the traditional Moroccan restrictions of women’s rights and individual freedoms. They represent endpoints of a longer and complicated sequence of events and processes that demonstrate the fight for rights within the power structure of patriarchy.

Creative Push

Creative Push is a multimedia art and humanities project about labor and delivery that seeks to create a meaningful dialogue between storytelling and visual art. is virtual space where people can listen to women’s labor and delivery stories and see artwork based on those stories.

Culinary Citizenship: Ethnic Food, Racial Agency, and Cultural Politics in Neoliberal Times

Building on recent work on the agency of matter and things by neo-materialist theorists such as Jane Bennett and Sara Ahmed, this project investigates the ways in which the cultural object of ethnic food can be understood as playing a crucial role in aiding U.S. immigrants’ informal but de facto acquisition of democratic citizenship.

Ethnic Return Migration to and from the Soviet Union

The tumultuous events of the twentieth century that transformed the lands of the former Russian empire simultaneously created ethnic diasporas abroad and inflamed nationalism among some ethnic minorities living in the Soviet Union. Over the course of the century numerous ethnicities--including varied Slavic, Baltic, Central Asian, Semitic, Mediterranean and people of the Caususes--have either repatriated to historic homelands within the Soviet Union or repatriated from the Soviet Union to historic homelands abroad.