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aarIndividual Research Grants

Deadline: August 1

To fulfill its commitment to advance research in religion, the AAR each year grants awards ranging from $500 to $5000 to support projects proposed by AAR members and selected by the AAR Research Grants Review Committee. These projects can be either collaborative or individual.

These grants provide support for important aspects of research such as travel to archives and libraries and field work. Grant awards range from $500 to $5000.

Funds are not provided for dissertation research, research assistance, released time, and publication expenses, nor travel to attend the AAR Annual Meeting.

Grant Cycle

Proposals must be uploaded to the AAR website by August 1. Award notification letters will be sent by the end of December. Project award funds are disbursed January 1 through June 31 of the award year. The research project expenses can be undertaken anytime within the calendar year of the award year. Awardees must submit an expense report as well as a brief report on the research supported by the AAR grant by January 31 of the following calendar year.


  • Applicants must be current AAR members who have been in good standing for at least the previous three years.
  • Applicants will not be considered who have received an AAR Research Award in the previous five years.
  • Applicants must have completed the doctorate.

Application Process

Applicants should submit their materials through the online research grants proposal submission form. The research grants online submission system is open between May 1 and August 1.

Applicants should be prepared to upload the following materials:

  • Cover page that includes the following:
    • Your name
    • Your institutional affiliation
    • Title of the project
    • The grant type – Individual or Collaborative
  • Abstract of 50 words or fewer describing the project
  • Project Budget (List budget items with amounts. Explanation of these expense items can be included in the two page description of the project. Also list other sources of support – e.g., funds granted by your institution, funds requested from outside agencies – and indicate the total award amount sought from the AAR.)
  • Two-page focused description of the research project that details its aims and significance and explains how the award would be used. Collaborative project descriptions should include brief descriptions of the scholarly role of each collaborator and a plan to have the research published.
  • Curriculum Vitae of no more than two pages. Collaborative project proposals should include CVs of no more than two pages for each collaborator.

Additional material will not be considered, nor will incomplete proposals be considered.

Application materials must uploaded by August 1. We do not accept hardcopies of proposals.

Criteria for Evaluation

All grant proposals (collaborative and individual) will be assessed by the AAR Research Grants Review Committee using the following criteria:

  • Clarity and focus of the research to be pursued
  • Contribution to scholarship in a field or subfield of religion and significance of the contribution for advancing the understanding of religion or for advancing interdisciplinary discussions between religion and other humanistic and social science disciplines
  • Adequacy of the overall work plan, including goals, objectives, and time frame for the completion of the project.

Contact Information

Send direct inquiries to Elizabeth Hardcastle at ehardcastle@aarweb.org or call 404-712-6654.

Research Grant Jury-Current Members:

  • Bruce David Forbes
  • Juliane Hammer
  • Aaron W. Hughes
  • Grace Ji-Sun Kim
  • Amy G. Oden
  • Frederick Ware
  • John R. Fitzmier (Staff Liaison)

[click here for the Collaborative Research Grant]

[read also:  A Personal Reflection]


profile-photoGrace Ji-Sun Kim is Associate Professor of Doctrinal Theology and the Director of the MATS program at Moravian Theological Seminary. She is the author of Colonialism, Han and the Transformative Spirit (Palgrave Pivot), The Holy Spirit, Chi, and the Other: A Model of Global and Intercultural Pneumatology (Palgrave Macmillan) and The Grace of Sophia: A Korean North American Women’s Christology (Pilgrim Press).