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AHHI Collaborative Faculty Seed Grant

Application Deadline:  March 22

Download the cover sheet »

Award Amount: up to $10,000

The African Heritage and Humanities Initiative (AHHI) is part of the African Studies Center at the University of Michigan. AHHI is making funds available to support collaborative research projects being undertaken by co-PIs at the University of Michigan and an African institution of higher learning and/or knowledge production. These grants are intended to support scholarship produced by U-M’s faculty in the arts, humanities and interpretive social sciences whose work illuminates the dynamic, contested process by which African cultures and histories are made. We aim to encourage the development of overlapping, intersecting research projects that bring African scholars into close conversation with U-M researchers.

AHHI has supported a range of projects over the years, such as:

  • A collaborative study of opera in South Africa involving faculty at U-M and at the University of Witswatersrand
  • Joint research on the heritage market in post-genocide Rwanda involving a U-M historian and a political scientist at the National University of Rwanda
  • A Museum exhibition in Kano, Nigeria displaying cloth manufactured in the city’s old textile factory jointly curated by U-M and Nigerian scholars


The aim of these grants is to create a framework within which U-M scholars can develop relationships with African scholars. The hope is that these seed grants will incubate work that can attract larger amounts of funding.


Each proposal must be accompanied by a completed cover sheet as illustrated at the end of this Call for Proposals. Other recommended program elements include:

  • Project description (2-page maximum), addressing:
    • Context of the work
    • Specific activities proposed for funding
    • Rationale, noting originality and significance of the work
    • Partnerships and collaboration, and expected roles of listed participants
    • Plan for continuation of the proposed project
  • Budget (1-page maximum) distinguishing travel, salary, supplies/equipment, and other
  • List of any funding requests under review for the same project
  • Timeline
  • CVs of the applicant, listed partners, and students proposed for funding

The cover sheet and additional application materials should be submitted as a single PDF, named “AHHI SEED GRANT [YOUR LAST NAME].” The PDF document should be emailed to no later than April 15. Applications received after this date will not be considered for funding. Applications will be reviewed by AHHI Steering Committee members.


Ranking of applications will be based upon the following criteria:

  • U-M based applicants must be ASC Associate or interested in becoming one
  • Project deepens collaborative partnerships with African counterparts
  • Proposal indicates how project builds upon existing scholarship while also demonstrating originality and innovation
  • Proposal indicates the kind of deliverable expected as the outcome of the proposed project. Examples of deliverables include, but are not limited to, a publication, a public performance, a white paper outlining future steps towards a goal, and/or a major grant application
  • Scope of work is reasonable for 12 to 18 months
  • Project has potential for future expansion / scale up


All research projects involving human subjects conducted in connection with this seed grant must have written evidence of compliance with required federal guidelines and approval from an institutional review board (IRB). IRB approvals must be maintained and in effect throughout the project’s connection with the program.

Grant recipients will be required to submit a final report to ASC, along with a short summary of results for the ASC website, no later than 6 months from the end of their funding cycle.

Questions may be directed to