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Research & Learning Development Initiative

New College of the Humanities and Northeastern University are pleased to announce the second round of our Research & Learning Development Initiative. This initiative provides faculty members with seed funding to help them develop proposals to enable creative and innovative projects that enhance our two institutions’ collaboration around learning and discovery.


The main goal of the initiative is to support collaborations that will lead to the development of proposals for external grants or fellowships and have a positive impact on the integration of NCH into the global system and the research reputation and capacity of both institutions. The anticipated external support may come in a variety of forms including grants, fellowships, research contracts, or research partnerships. In addition, we encourage proposals that support our shared goal of fostering student involvement in faculty research. In line with our shared priorities, strong proposals will have some or all of the following characteristics:

  • Involve interdisciplinary collaboration between Northeastern and NCH faculty
  • Support the implementation of “Humanics” – the integration of human, data, and tech literacies – across both institutions
  • Promote lifelong learning opportunities across the network
  • Facilitate the development of innovative learning opportunities across the network
  • Exploit distinctive synergies (of place, for example) that NCH brings to the network
  • Show potential for scholarly recognition and/or impact on external communities
  • Articulate a sound plan and timeline for securing future funding


All permanent faculty at NCH are eligible to apply for these awards. Full-time faculty at Northeastern are eligible and encouraged to apply in collaboration with NCH faculty. Fixed-term faculty at NCH may be involved in collaboration with permanent NCH faculty, although they cannot act as single or principal investigators. Permanent vs fixed-term is determined by status as of January 6 th , 2020. Teams may include students, as well.

Maximum Award

Awards for a single investigator will not normally exceed £5,000. Awards to faculty teams (within NCH or in partnership with other NU colleges) will not normally exceed £15,000. Most projects will be funded for six months; all unexpended funds will be returned after 12 months (from date of notification).

Allowable Expenses

Allowable expenses include travel, the purchase of data or software, access fees to archives, and funding for students as research assistants. In rare instances these funds may be used to purchase hardware if the hardware is necessary for the development of the full proposal. Neither faculty salary nor faculty course releases are supported under this program, unless the research project itself provides learning opportunities to students, in which case teaching assistants will be considered.


  • Return flight between London & Boston – $750
  • Accommodation per night – $200
  • Transfers – $100
  • Meals per day – $60
  • Research Assistants – seek guidance on rates from the home college of the proposed student

Application Materials

Applications must be submitted by email to the Chair of the Research Committee ( with the subject line ‘Research & Learning Development Initiative Application’. Applications can be submitted at any time but must be submitted by 6pm (GMT), 21 st February 2020, to be guaranteed consideration.

The application includes the proposal and the curriculum vitae of the applicant(s).

The proposal should be a three to five (double-spaced) page document that includes:

  • a strong description of the rationale and potential impact of the proposed project and the trajectory the faculty member(s) aim to develop;
  • an explanation of the methodology for the proposed project;
  • an outline of a specific work plan that connects to the budget as well as a description, when appropriate, of how students will be involved in the project;
  • a detailed budget (normally no more than £5,000 for a single investigator and £15,000 for teams) and commentary that specifies each requested expenditure (see expenses guidelines above);
  • a statement of how activities supported by this seed funding will help faculty member(s) prepare a proposal for external funding, and impact the College’s reputation and capacity for research;
  • a specific future funding plan for the submission (including the specific funding agency, its submission date(s), and a timeline) of one or more proposals for external support.

Please note: Faculty members who are applying together should include a multiple-investigator plan that includes a description of shared roles and responsibilities for the proposed project and future proposals for external funding.

Review Process

Applications will be reviewed by a committee consisting of the Master, the Dean for Academic Affairs and Innovation, the Research Committee Chair (or deputy), a Dean of an NU College, the Dean of Libraries and Vice Provost for Information Collaboration at NU, and a member of the Board of NCH at Northeastern. Decisions will be announced by 9th April 2020, with funding available for release from that date for up to one calendar year.

Interim and Final Report

All awardees are expected to submit an interim report after six months of receipt of project funding and a final report within one year of receipt of project funding. This report should include a description of project activities and accomplishments, barriers faced and strategies to overcome them, any dissemination activities including papers or conference presentations, and finally a description of external funds applied for and notice of which have been received. This report should be no more than three pages long and should be sent to the Chair of the Research Committee.


Please address any questions about this initiative to the Chair of the NCH Research Committee, Brian Ball ( ).

Download the Research & Learning Development Initiative outline here.