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).

Seed Grant application deadline:

October 4th, 2019

Application guidelines 

Application form 

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

Power, Society and the Senses: A Workshop

This project will bring together humanities scholars, social scientists, artists and poets, digital specialists and members of the public, from North America and Europe, to examine the role played by the senses in the development and exercise of power – political, communal and institutional – in ways that are defined according to ability, class, gender and race.


Storytelling on Location: Emerging Modalities of Place-Based Writing

This project aims to delineate a methodology for creating site-specific writing projects with mobile augmented reality technologies. Mobile augmented reality (AR) applications overlay digital media files — images, videos, 3D animations, etc. — onto the user’s live camera view of the physical world.


Who Wrote the Autobiography of Malcolm X

Although Malcolm X's friends, his family memers, reporters and biographers all question the accuracy of "The Autobiography of Malcolm X," they all claim or assume that Malcolm X wrote it (allongside his collaborator Alex Haley). Researching copious primary documents in five archival sites, I discovered, to the contrary, that the book's editors intervened significantly to shape the text.


“You can’t see it, but I’ve got a lot of shit going on”: Young Women, Invisible Disability, and the Paradox of Passing

This feminist research project interrogates the category and experience of invisible disability as it intersects with cultural norms for young femininity through building and analyzing a rich, diverse archive of invisible disability narratives. Ultimately, the project’s goal is to expand disability studies to take seriously bodyminds that experience ableism yet have an uneasy and tenuous relationship with disability as it has been conventionally defined—that is, as physical, unchanging, and visible—and to reimagine disability as a capacious and dynamic continuum.


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.

Piloting DAHA: The Digital Archive of Hohokam Archaeology

This IHR Seed Grant will initiate development of the Digital Archive of Hohokam Archaeology (DAHA), a comprehensive scholarly archive that will allow archaeologists to address compelling historical challenges with 21st century computational approaches. The enormously enhanced scholarly access to 1,600 major reports in DAHA will transform our ability to answer key questions about Hohokam society, which is known for its enormous irrigation systems and large, sustainable towns. Furthermore, it will serve as model for similar archives devoted to different cultures, periods, or regions.

Stepping Forward: Walking between Art and Thought

Museum of Walking (MoW) is a socially engaged project founded in 2014 by artists Angela Ellsworth and Steven J. Yazzie. MoW is located in the 10’ x 12’ office of Professor Ellsworth on the ASU campus. The project considers walking as an expansive relational activity associated with art, science, philosophy, health, ecology, activism, and sustainability. MoW is a dynamic educational and social resource committed to the act of walking as an agent for change as well as contemplation. The museum’s interest in walking relates to the historical, cultural, and political sites that impact bodies.

Vibrant Lives and Data Archives

Vibrant Lives and Data Archives proposes to juxtapose “human” and “artifactual” metadata as a real-time experience of data production to educate audiences about the torrents of data we produce in our everyday lives and to raise questions about how we value persons, art objects, and information. Our team of scholar-artists embody expertise in media studies, digital humanities, data/information capture, digital privacy and information security, improvisational dance, movement and wearable technology, and feminist performance.