College Grants & Sponsored Programs

Mellon Foundation - Call for Concepts 2024

Call for Concepts 2024 Competition

Preliminary Project Concept Note Deadline: Thursday, November 16th by 12 PM EST


Through its Higher Learning grantmaking area, the Mellon Foundation seeks humanities-based ideas for research and curricular projects focused on any of three topics: Cultures of US Democracy; Environmental Justice Studies; and Social Justice and Disciplinary Knowledge. For more information about Mellon’s call, including a detailed description of the three areas of interest and the eligible fields of study, see the Higher Learning Call for Concepts 2024 webpage.

An institution may submit no more than three applications for this call. Mellon’s Concepts Guidelines require that the Principal Investigator (PI) for each proposed project be a faculty member or dean in a program or department in the humanities or humanistic social sciences, or the institution’s provost.


Step 1: Concept Submission
Submit a preliminary Project Concept Note of 500 words or less to Nicole Marshall via email at no later than Noon on Thursday, Nov. 16th describing your ideas for a potential project, including the topic your project addresses (i.e., Cultures of US Democracy; Environmental Justice Studies; or Social Justice and Disciplinary Knowledge), the rationale, and specific activities it might involve. The note should clearly state the necessity of the planned work, its goals, and potential impact. Please also indicate if your proposed concept is for a research project, curricular project, or a research and curricular project.

Step 2: Internal Review & Selection Process
The review process will involve Kara Doyle, Dean of Academic Departments & Programs, and Michele Angrist, Vice President for Academic Affairs & Dean of the Faculty. Applicants will be notified of the deans’ decisions no later than Noon on Wednesday, Nov. 22nd.

Step 3: Registration with the Mellon Foundation
Faculty applicants will receive an email from Nicole confirming Dean Doyle’s and Dean Angrist’s endorsement of their concept for submission to Mellon. At that time, Nicole will confirm the PI’s continued interest in applying and she will then submit the PI’s registration request to Mellon no later than 3 p.m. EST on Thursday, Nov. 30th.

Step 4: Application Submission to the Mellon Foundation
It is expected that selected PIs will work closely with the Grants Office and in consultation with the academic deans throughout the proposal and budget development process leading up to submission. Full concept applications must be submitted to Mellon no later than 3 p.m. EST on Thursday, Feb. 15th. PIs are required to have the support of the institution’s senior academic leadership and each application must include an endorsement letter from Dean Angrist.

For questions or to discuss your ideas, please contact Nicole Marshall at