Spencer Foundation Invites Applications for Lyle Spencer Research Awards

Spencer Foundation

The Chicago-based Spencer Foundation, the only national foundation focused exclusively on supporting education research, is inviting applications for the Lyle Spencer Research Awards Program.

The program envisions a broad conception of educational practice that encompasses formal and informal learning as well as the institutional, policy, and normative frameworks that influence and are influenced by learning and developmental processes and seeks to engage the research community in thinking big and engaging with work that is thoughtful, critical of prevailing assumptions, self-critical about the work and its limitations, and relevant to the aim of building knowledge for the “lasting improvement in education.”

Grants of up to five years and ranging in amount between $525,000 and $1 million will be awarded to intellectually ambitious research projects with the potential to transform the practice of education.

Scholars from all disciplines (including education, anthropology, philosophy, psychology, sociology, economics, history, law, or neuroscience) are invited to submit a proposal. Projects may utilize a wide array of research methods, including quantitative, qualitative, mixed-methods, ethnographies, design-based research, participatory methods, and archival research.

The foundation values work that fosters creative and open-minded scholarship, engages in deep inquiry, and examines robust questions related to education. The program also supports proposals with multiple disciplinary and methodological perspectives, both domestically and internationally, and work that stretches beyond existing research silos.

To be eligible, principal investigators and co-PIs must have earned a doctorate in an academic discipline or professional field (or have appropriate experience in an education research-related profession) and must be affiliated with a college, university, school district, nonprofit research facility, or nonprofit cultural institution that is willing to serve as the administrative organization should a grant be awarded.

Letters of intent are due May 22, 2019. Upon review, selected applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal by October 2019.

See the Spencer Foundation website for complete program guidelines and application instructions.


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