LAWRENCE – The National Endowment for the Humanities has notified the Hall Center for the Humanities at the University of Kansas of a $425,000 National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant award, contingent upon the Center raising a 3:1 match of $1.275 million. The resulting endowment will fund the Hall Center’s new initiative, Advancing Research Collaboration in the Humanities (ARCH).
The goal of ARCH is to support those KU humanities scholars who wish to create models of advanced collaborative practices in the humanities, both for research and communication of knowledge.
“The role of the Hall Center is to experiment and innovate in the realm of humanities research,” said Victor Bailey, Hall Center director and distinguished professor of British history. “The programs that will be funded by the new endowment seek to foster joint conceptualization and analysis of data and sources, and underwrite research that takes advantage of multiple forms of expertise.”
The Challenge Grant will fund two core programs intended to advance collaborative, interdisciplinary research in the humanities.
Research Collaboratives will fund research by KU faculty teams, including projects that incorporate graduate students and outside partners. The Center will select projects for support that show evidence they will produce tangible results, generate or test models for best practices in collaborative research, and be sustainable by attracting external funding.
Scholars on Site will support research and program collaborations between KU faculty and community-based organizations. This initiative will grant KU scholars the ability to engage more fully with the off-campus community in humanities-based research, demonstrate the ongoing relevance and utility of the humanities, and encourage undergraduate and graduate curricula at KU focused on community-based collaborative research.
These initiatives form part of the Hall Center’s five-year strategic plan, align with the University’s Strategic Planning for Excellence initiative and connect directly with the incentives for research collaboration that are components of the University’s new comprehensive capital campaign.
The Hall Center has long been involved in pioneering interdisciplinary initiatives, including its humanities seminars and colloquia and its high-profile public Humanities Lecture Series. These programs provided the models of successful programming now used by humanities centers nationwide.
This award is the third NEH Challenge Grant the Hall Center has secured. The Center won its first Challenge Grant in 1983, which focused on faculty enhancement; the second, awarded in 2000, funded development of new community-focused outreach programs.