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

Working Toward Peace and Reconciliation in Myanmar: Abating Buddhist-Muslim Tensions

CLAS Seed Grant     In recent months, Buddhist-Muslim violence has threatened to derail democratic reforms currently underway in Myanmar, formerly Burma. Prof. Schober and Prof. Saikia will organize an international conference on strategies for peace among Buddhist and Muslim communities in Myanmar, facilitated by the Center for Asian Research.

Altering Implicit Stereotypes through Performance: The Role of Motor Resonance in Shaping Unconscious Associations

Current vocabulary to describe the reception of the performance suggests relative passivity: we speak of the spectator (who sees) or the audience (who hears). Neither of these terms adequately describes the kinesthetic experience of performance. In theatre, we have a robust tendency to resonate with actors' behaviors, which in turn can shape our unconscious beliefs about social normalcies. This study will attempt to gather and analyze empirical data to investigate the role of live action resonance in altering implicit associations.

Exploring Near Death

This project will investigate "Near Death" through personal research and then convene a conference of experts from both a scientific and humanistic perspective to understand and articulate the many varied points of view in the near death experience. The goals of this project are two-fold: First, write a book proposal to interest publishers to commission it.

Humanities Behind the Walls (HBW)

Humanities Behind the Walls (HBW) draws on a genealogy of situated and subjugated knowledges that have emerged from behind prison walls to provide an opportunity for faculty and students to critically engage the humanistic and humanizing potential inherent in acts of reading and discussing literature, poetry, and drama with people incarcerated at Perryville Women's Prison, and with formerly incarcerated people at Arizona State University.

The Lucy's Legacy Project--Institute of Human Origins and Donald C. Johanson Collection: Linking Public Humanities with a Public Understanding of Science

This project will develop provocative humanities-based questions to share about the origins of questions of what it means to be human and questions about the collection, how the materials support certain narratives attached to paleoanthropological pursuits, and how academic rivalries punctuate practice and fire the public imagination. Moreover, this project is the first step in analyzing, cataloguing, and preserving a collection of materials from a significant scientist and research institute that tell a story of the history of anthropology during the last quarter of the 20th century.