America's Historical and Cultural Organizations
The next competition is expected to have an August 14, 2013 deadline. Check back for updated guidelines at least two months prior to the August deadline.
Grant: America's Historical and Cultural Organizations
Agency: National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)
Division: Public Programs
Deadline: The deadline was January 9, 2013, for projects beginning August 2013.
Description: America's Historical and Cultural Organizations grants provide support for museums, libraries, historic places and other organizations that produce public programs in the humanities.
Grants support the following formats:
- Exhibitions at museums, libraries and other venues.
- Interpretations of historic places, sites or regions.
- Book/film discussion programs, living history presentations, and other face-to-face programs at libraries, community centers and other public venues.
- Interpretive websites.
All projects should:
- Build on sound humanities scholarship.
- Deepen public understanding of significant humanities questions.
- Involve a team of humanities scholars in all phases of development and implementation.
- Appeal to broad audiences.
- Approach a subject analytically and interpretively through an appropriate variety of perspectives.
- Encourage dialogue and discussion.
Humanities projects tailored to particular groups, such as families, youth teachers, seniors, at-risk communities and veterans are welcome.
NEH offers three types of America's Historical and Cultural Organizations awards: Planning Grants, Implementation Grants and Chairman's Special Award.
Planning Grants are available for projects that may need further development before applying for implementation. This planning can include the identification and refinement of the project's main humanities ideas and questions, consultation with scholars, preliminary audience evaluation, preliminary design of the proposed interpretive formats, beta testing of digital formats, development of complementary programming, research or the drafting of interpretive materials.
Implementation Grants support final scholarly research and consultation, design development, production and installation of a project for presentation to the public. Applicants for implementation grants should have already finished most of the planning for their projects, including the identification of the key humanities themes, relevant scholarship and program formats.
Chairman's Special Award projects are complex implementation projects of exceptional significance and impact that promise to address important humanities ideas in new ways and are likely to reach large national audiences. These projects typically feature collaboration between multiple partners and a broad combination of diverse formats.
Applications that respond to NEH's Bridging Cultures initiative are welcome. Projects could focus on cultures internationally or within the United States. International projects might seek to enlarge Americans' understanding of other places and times, as well as other perspectives and intellectual traditions. American projects might explore the great variety of cultural influences on, and myriad subcultures within, American society. These projects might also investigate how Americans have approached and attempted to surmount seemingly unbridgeable cultural divdes, or examine the ideals of civility and civic discourse. In connection with a focus on civic discourse, projects might explore the role of women in America's civic life as well as the civic role of women in other cultures and regions of the world.
NEH encourages applicants to create resources accompanying their projects that would be appropriate for publishing on EDSITEment, NEH's online source of educational materials for the classroom.
Fit for public broadcasting: Public broadcasting utilizes various formats for its humanities-related programming such as broadcasting, educational materials and web content. Relevant examples of funded projects include interpretive websites and other digital formats, reading and discussion programs and panel exhibitions that travel widely, reach a broad audience and take advantage of complementary programming formats to enhance the visitor's experience.
This program is ideal for public broadcasting stations, as it combines their experience in encouraging discussions of the humanities in a public sphere and their expertise in using and developing innovative media. In 2012, The ETV Endowment of South Carolina through SCETV received a $40,000 grant to support the planning of a website, virtual tour and educational materials about the history of Bernard Baruch's rural estate in Coastal South Carolina.
Eligibility: Any U.S. nonprofit organization with IRS 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status is eligible, as are state and local governmental agencies. Eligible institutions include but are not limited to public, school, academic, and research libraries; museums; disciplinary and professional associations; cultural institutions; state humanities councils; and institutions of higher learning. Individuals are not eligible to apply.
Anticipated funding amount: Planning awards range from $40,000 to $75,000, depending on the complexity of the project, and are usually made for a period of 12 months. Basic planning grants of up to $40,000 are available for projects that include collaboration with scholars to refine humanities content, undertake archival research and conduct preliminary object research. Awards of up to $75,000 are available for the development of unusually ambitious or multifaceted exhibitions, the creation of prototypes for digital media projects and for more complex projects with the potential to reach exceptionally wide audiences.
Implementation awards are usually made for a period of 12 to 36 months and typically do not exceed $400,000. Awards of up to $1,000,000 are available for Chairman's Special Award projects that have unusual significance and promise to reach exceptionally wide audiences.
Although cost sharing is not required, NEH is rarely able to support the full costs of projects approved for funding. In most cases, NEH grants cover no more than 50-60 percent of project costs.
How to apply: Applicants are encouraged to contact program officers who can answer questions and review preliminary drafts. NEH recommends that drafts be submitted at least six weeks before the deadline. Drafts should be sent as attachments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Final applications for this program must be submitted at Grants.gov. Online submission requires registration, a process that usually takes three to five business days but can take as long as four weeks. Be sure to visit Grants.gov and begin registering well in advance of the grant deadline.