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Friday, January 19, 2018

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A New Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship in the Social Sciences to Support Research on the Science of Generosity
University of Notre Dame

March, 2011

We are pleased to announce five (5) one-year doctoral dissertation fellowships of $25,000 each, to be awarded for the 2011-2012 academic year.

The aim of these dissertation fellowships is to support highly promising graduate students who are conducting research and writing empirically-grounded, social science dissertations examining the origins, manifestations, and/or consequences of generosity. Proposals must clearly demonstrate how the research described in them will directly and noticeably contribute toward a greater understanding of generosity. Doctoral students in sociology, psychology, economics, political science, and anthropology with dissertation projects that clearly fit the stated criteria are welcome to apply.

We are particularly interested in projects that aim to investigate one of three key aspects of generosity:

  • The sources, origins and causes of generosity
  • The manifestations and expressions of generosity
  • The consequences of generosity for both the givers and receivers involved

The following are examples of topics and questions that may be of interest for funding:

  • How people originally learn to be generous or not
  • The relationship between generosity with money, time, helping, and emotional support
  • Institutional and cultural generators of generosity
  • The mental and physical health consequences of generosity
  • Contributions of voluntary generosity to the common good of society

We are now accepting applications for the 2011-2012 academic year, which must be postmarked no later than March 28, 2011. Fellowship awardees will be notified no later than May 1, 2011.

Winners of the dissertation fellowships will join a distinguished group of 13 faculty scholars from around the world who have already been awarded a total of $2.9 million for research on generosity through a competitive RFP award process (see

While each fellowship will be awarded to a doctoral candidate, the grant will list the applicant's faculty advisor as principal investigator and the doctoral candidate as co-investigator. The award will be paid through the students' home institutions, not directly.

Awardees will be required to present their research along with the 13 faculty scholars at a final Science of Generosity conference to be held at the completion of the initiative, and so to help build a network of scholars studying generosity.

Prospective fellowship applicants should carefully study the entire Science of Generosity website to familiarize themselves with the concerns and goals of the initiative and to determine the suitability of their particular dissertation project for this fellowship (

Fellowship applications must include: a 5-6 page description, single-spaced, of the proposed dissertation, a CV, and a letter of recommendation from the dissertation faculty chair who agrees to be listed as principal investigator on the project should it win. Applicants for the 2011-12 year must also have successfully defended their dissertation proposals by the deadline of April 15, 2011.


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