Spring 2020 Grants Newsletter: Arts and Humanities

National Endowment for the Humanities
Tier I: Planning, Basic Research, or Adaptation
Deadline: April 10, 2020
Website: https://www.neh.gov/sites/default/files/inline-files/Research%20and%20Development%202020%20notice%20of%20funding%20opportunity%2020200515-PR.pdf

The purpose of this program is to support projects that address major challenges in preserving or providing access to humanities collections and resources. These challenges include the need to find better ways to preserve materials of critical importance to the nation’s cultural heritage—from fragile artifacts and manuscripts to analog recordings and digital assets subject to technological obsolescence—and to develop advanced modes of organizing, searching, discovering, and using such materials.Tier I grants provide support for up to two years, and $75,000, with projects strating March 1, 2021.  There is a pre-application webinar scheduled for April 1, 2020 1pm-2pm CT.

Research and Development Projects are encouraged in one or more of the following areas of special interest:

-Preserving our audiovisual and digital heritage. Research and Development
supports ongoing work to address the needs of collection formats most at risk of
obsolescence. Projects may consider addressing issues such as format degradation,
preservation work at scale, algorithmic and machine learning methodologies, storage, data appraisal, and curation.
-Conserving our material past. Research and Development supports the scientific
work to improve the conservation treatment and preventive care of cultural heritage.
-Protecting our cultural heritage. Research and Development supports the
development of tools, methods, technologies, or workflows for documenting, sharing, visualizing, and presenting lost or imperiled cultural heritage materials.
-Reaching under-represented communities. Research and Development supports
work in making preservation and access activities more accessible, sustainable, and
manageable for institutions with limited capacities and access to humanities collections, including persons with disabilities. NEH especially encourages projects that address and/or include as lead applicants and project partners institutions representing minority and indigenous communities.

Wenner-Gren Foundtion* 
Post-PhD Research Grants
Deadline: June 1, 2020
Website: http://www.wennergren.org/programs/post-phd-research-grants

The program contributes to the Foundation’s overall mission to support basic research in anthropology and to ensure that the discipline continues to be a source of vibrant and significant work that furthers our understanding of humanity’s cultural and biological origins, development, and variation. The Foundation supports research that demonstrates a clear link to anthropological theory and debates, and promises to make a solid contribution to advancing these ideas. There is no preference for any methodology, research location, or subfield. The Foundation particularly welcomes proposals that employ a comparative perspective, can generate innovative approaches or ideas, and/or integrate two or more subfields.

The maximum amount of the Post-Ph.D. Research Grant is US $20,000.

Required application materials:

  • General information about yourself and your project
  • An abstract of your proposed research. If your application is successful, this abstract will appear on the Foundation’s website. Please make sure your abstract is written in a style that is clearly understandable to a non-specialist.
  • Answers to five project description questions. Carefully prepare your responses, which should directly address the issues these questions raise.  The best applications make full use of the space provided.
  • A resubmission statement if the current application is a resubmission of a previously declined application.
  • A detailed budget
  • A bibliography relevant to your proposed project
  • A curriculum vitae for the applicant

Association for the Sociology of Religion
Joseph H. Fichter Research Grant Competition
Deadline: May 1, 2020
Website: http://www.sociologyofreligion.com/lectures-papers/fichter-research-grant-competition/

Fichter Research Grants are awarded annually by ASR to members of the Association involved in promising sociological research on women in religion or on the intersection between religion and gender or religion and sexualities.  A total of $12,000 is available to be awarded annually, and this amount is usually distributed among several of the leading applications in the year’s competition. Applicants must be members of ASR.  Grant funds can be used to pay for direct research expenses, such as (1) transportation expenses to conduct research; (2) the cost of hiring a research assistant or transcriber; (3) computer software packages that are not typically provided by a college or university (e.g., specialized statistical software packages).

Application procedures:

-Craft proposal of no more than 5 double-spaced pages (1250 words) that outlines the rational and plan of research.  It should have a descriptive title for the research project (e.g., “A Examination of Women’s Leadership Role in Two Catholic Parishes”), present a clear research question, review previous research and theory that forms the background for the study, describe the social scientific research method(s) that will be used to carry out the research as well as a research timetable, and summarize succinctly what the research aims to discover.

-A detailed, one-page budget.  It should indicate the items for which the applicant is seeking funding, and next to each item, the amount it will cost (in U.S. dollars) and the exact purposes for which it will be used. An itemized budget is necessary to enable the Fichter Committee to determine if the budget is reasonable and for decisions concerning partial funding.  Applicants are advised to NOT include items in their proposed budget that ASR does not cover (see above). IMPORTANT NOTE: A single proposal should prepare a budget that includes no more than $5,000.

-An updated curriculum vitae, including a statement of his/her qualifications to carry out the proposed research, and a current email address at which he/she can be contacted during the summer months.

World Resource Institute-Ross Center
WRI Ross Center Prize for Cities
Deadline: May 7, 2020
Website: https://prizeforcities.org/#about
Prize: Cash prize of $250,000, four runners-up: $25,000, travel to NYC for awards ceremony.


All types of organizations/entities and individuals from the public, private and not-for-profit sectors are eligible to participate. Submissions may be for initiatives and projects anywhere in the world commenced after January 1, 2000.

Please consult the Terms and Conditions before you apply.

An initiative or project is a specific activity or programmatically linked set of activities in the city. Programmatic linkages may be by design, for example being part of a common, documented strategy; by virtue of common financial support, common oversight, or shared implementation teams; or by documented commitment to shared goals. A Project could refer to a number of types of activities that fit into a range of categories, including social, technological, and/or institutional innovation, training or awareness raising activities, policy or regulatory reform, and infrastructure creation or modification.

American Journalism Historians Association
Joseph McKerns Research Grant
Deadline: June 1, 2020
Website: https://ajha.wildapricot.org/mckerns

Award is for $1,250 and can be used for travel or research related expenses, but not salary.


All current AJHA (American Journalism Historians Association) full members with a minimum of three years’ membership at the time of application are eligible.

The research must be related to mass media history.
Awardees are expected to continue their membership through the grant period.
Members may apply for a McKerns Research Grant once every five years.

Application Procedures:

-Complete application form included with the Call For Proposals.
-1 to 3-page prospectus/overview of the project, including a budget (which should include a listing of amount and sources of other support, if appropriate), timelines, and expected outlets for the research.
-If appropriate, include Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval from the applicant’s university.
-A shortened curriculum vita (no more than 3 pages).
-Submit documents by email as a pdf.

National Endowment for the Humanities
Digital Humanities Advancement Grants (DHAG)
Deadline: June 30, 2020 (optional draft due May 19, 2020).
Website: https://www.neh.gov/grants/odh/digital-humanities-advancement-grants

Three Levels of Award:
Level I: $50,000
Level II: $100,000
Level III: $325,000 in outright funds, $50,000 in matching funds.

Awards to go to organizations to produce articles, digital material and publication, workshop, report, teaching resources, digital infrastructure, software (3 year grant).  In support of its efforts to advance digital infrastructures and initiatives in libraries and archives, and subject to the availability of funds and IMLS discretion, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) anticipates providing funding through this program. These funds may support some DHAG projects that further the IMLS mission to advance, support, and empower America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations. IMLS funding will encourage innovative collaborations between library and archives professionals, humanities professionals, and relevant public communities that advance preservation of, access to, and public engagement with digital collections and services to empower community learning, foster civic cohesion, and strengthen knowledge networks. This could include collaborations with community-based archives, community-driven efforts, and institutions or initiatives representing the traditionally underserved. Interested applicants should also refer to the current IMLS Strategic Plan for additional context.

Website has examples of narratives and checklists for application materials.

Applications should be submitted through Grants.gov.

Women’s Studio Workshop
Studio Workspace Residency
Deadline: June 30, 2020
Website: https://wsworkshop.org/residencies/studio-residency-grant/

The Studio Grant is a six- to eight-week residency for artists to create new work in any of our studio disciplines: intaglio, letterpress, papermaking, screenprinting, photography, or ceramics. WSW invites applications from artists at any stage in their careers.

This grant includes a stipend of $350/week, up to $500 for materials used during the residency, up to $250 for travel within the Continental US, free onsite housing, and 24/7 studio access. WSW can also provide technical advice and production assistance.
Application Process:
This residency has a two-step jury process: a rotating, impartial jury selects the finalists and then WSW applies for NEA funding for the chosen projects.
-Notification date: October 30
-Residency length: 6-8 weeks
-Residency occurs: 1-2 years after application, September through June
Application must include:

-A current resume

-A brief description of your proposed project, including the studio(s) you’d like to use. 300 word maximum.

-Up to ten images of recent work (digital specifications here)

-An image script, which should include title, medium, dimension, and date of each image

Light Work
Artist-in-Residence Program
Deadline: July 1, 2020
Link: https://www.lightwork.org/air/apply/

Each year Light Work invites 12-15 artists to participate in its residency program, including one artist co-sponsored by Autograph ABP and one artist commission for Urban Video Project (UVP). Artists selected for the residency program are invited to live in Syracuse for one month. They receive a $5,000 stipend, an apartment to stay in, a private digital studio, a private darkroom, and 24-hour access to our facility.

Participants in the residency program are expected to use their month to pursue their own projects: photographing in the area, scanning or printing for a specific project or book, and so on. Artists are not obligated to lecture at our facility, though we hope that the artists are friendly and accessible to local artists and students. Work by each Artist-in-Residence becomes a part of the Light Work Collection and is published in a special edition of Contact Sheet: The Light Work Annual along with an essay commissioned by Light Work.


Our international residency program is open to all artists working in photography or image-based media, from any country.

Application Procedures:

Applications must be submitted by the posted deadline. Applicants will receive an e-mail from SlideRoom confirming that we have received an application. While submissions are open throughout the year, our main selection committee review concludes in the late fall and notifications will be sent no later than December of each year. Please be patient in this process. We will contact you should we need more information, and to notify you of your application status when the time comes.

John Templeton Foundation*
Science and the Big Questions
Deadline: August 14, 2020
Link: https://www.templeton.org/funding-areas/science-big-questions

Funds work in the strategic areas of natural sciences, human sciences, philosophy & theology, and public engagement.  The work this foundation funds falls into one or more of the following themes:

-fundamental structures and laws of nature
-the nature of the divine
-the nature and potential of the human mind
-religion and spirituality in human experience
-life, love, and virtue

Grant duration is typically up to three years.

Interested applicants should submit project idea through online funding (OFI) inquiry portal and may be invited to submit full application.

-Small grants are requests for $234,800
OFI deadline: August 14, 2020

-Large grants are for more than $234,800
OFI deadline: August 14, 2020

Opportunities marked with an (*) require completion of a clearance form with DePaul’s Development Office.

Additional funding search tools are available on the ORS website at: https://offices.depaul.edu/ors/pre-award-services/identifying-funding/funding-search-tools/Pages/default.aspx

Winter 2020 Grants Newsletter: Humanities

Sustainable Arts Foundation*
$5,000 award each to twenty artists with children. Award is unrestricted cash, applicants use funds as they see fit. 
Deadline: February 28, 2020
Link: https://apply.sustainableartsfoundation.org/

To be eligible, the applicant must have at least one child under the age of 18.

Artists and writers with at least one child and a strong portfolio of polished work are welcome to apply.

We are inspired by anyone who is making creative work while raising a family. Given the intense demand for these awards (we typically receive over 3,000 applications), and the fact that the awards are based on demonstrated excellence in your discipline, we don’t recommend that artists or writers who are beginning their creative careers apply to this program.

While we don’t require that applicants have published or exhibited their work, the rigor and critique involved in that process can certainly benefit the portfolio. Portfolios of writing or artwork created in a more personal vein for sharing with friends and family are not suitable.

Half of awards go to applicants of color.

Application Process:

Juried award.

$20 application fee, submit portfolio of work created since becoming a parent and in the last three years.

Creative Capital Award

Creative Capital provides each funded project with up to $50,000 in direct funding and career development services valued at more than $50,000, for a total commitment of over $100,000 per project. Themes for work include: history, civic practice, immigration, education systems, and the built environment. 
Deadline: February 29, 2020
Link: https://creative-capital.org/award/about-the-creative-capital-award-open/


  • At least 25 years old
  • A working artist with at least five years of professional experience
  • A U.S. Citizen, permanent legal resident, or an O-1 Visa holder

Application process:

February 1 through February 29 at 4pm ET: Open Application

Project proposals will be accepted in a free and open application through the month of February. Along with project title, descriptions, and selection of up to two disciplines, applications include questions about the goals of the project, work samples, and provide a total budget number for the project.

July: Second Round Review

Projects selected to advance to the second round will be notified at this time. Project proposals will be reviewed by a new pool of evaluators in this phase. No additional material will need to be submitted.

October: Panel Review

Projects chosen to advance to panel review will be asked for a project update and will be reviewed for a final panel of evaluators. No additional material will need to be submitted.

November: Decision

Panel meetings will be held in New York City in the fall. Projects will be chosen for support and submitted to the board of directors for final approval. Selected artists will be notified of the decision before the end of the year, and will be invited to attend an orientation in the spring, and the Creative Capital Artist Retreat in the summer.

December: Announcement

A public announcement of the Creative Capital Awards will be made in the winter.

Houston Center for Contemporary Craft

Artist Residency Program

Deadline: March 1, 2020

Link: https://www.crafthouston.org/artists/residents/apply-to-program/

Media accepted: Wood, Glass, Metal, Fiber, Clay, and Mixed Media

Applicants must be able to fulfill a program requirement of working in their studios for two days per week during HCCC public hours. All resident artists are required to open their studios to public interaction on Saturdays and one other day of the week (TBD), as well as during exhibition openings and specific educational programs on the evenings and weekends. Applicants should consider the public-facing nature of the residencies and the fact that a major goal of the program is to provide visitors with an opportunity to explore contemporary craft through engaging with working artists.

5-10 residencies awarded, each includes a $600 monthly stipend.

Application Process:

Applicants for HCCC’s Artist Residency and for the ICP Residency will apply through the same online application.  All applicants must provide the following information when completing the online application:

Artist Statement: In one page or less, describe your creative work, process, technique, and conceptual development. Tie your statement to a specific process or work that is depicted in your images.

Resume: Three pages or less.

Three References: Provide contact information for three references. References will be contacted in the final stages of the interview process.

Images of 10 Works Created within the Last Two Years: Upload one wide shot and one detail for each of 10 pieces, for a total number of 20 images.

International Applicants: International applicants must provide proof of eligibility to work in the U.S.— green card or appropriate visa—with application.

American Council of Learned Societies

Mellon/ACLS Public Fellows Competition for Recent PhDs

Deadline: March 18, 2020

Link: https://www.acls.org/Competitions-and-Deadlines/Mellon-ACLS-Public-Fellows-Program/Mellon-ACLS-Public-Fellows-Competition-for-Recent-PhDs

Stipend: $70,000 per year, employer-based health insurance, a relocation allowance, and up to $3,000 in professional development funds over the course of the fellowship

Tenure: Two years; start date on August 3 or September 1, 2020, depending on the fellowship position

21 Two-year terms positions offered at organizations in government and non-profit sectors for recent PhDs in the humanities and humanistic social sciences.


Applicants must have a PhD in the humanities or humanistic social sciences (see note on eligible fields below) conferred between September 1, 2016 and June 19, 2020.

Applicants defend and file/deposit their completed dissertations no later than April 6, 2020, and be prepared to verify this with official university documentation during the review and selection process.

Applicants must be authorized to work legally in the United States. Neither ACLS nor the host organization will sponsor fellows for work visas.

Application Process:

Fellowships serve in specific roles at specific organizations.

Applicants can apply to up to two positions.

Application materials:

-A completed application form

-A cover letter tailored to each selected position and addressed to the host organization (1-2 pages). Applicants applying for two positions will submit two distinct cover letters.

-A résumé (1-2 pages). Applicants applying for two positions will submit two résumés.

-Two reference letters for each selected position.

Archaeological Institute of America
AIA Society Outreach Grant Program
Deadline: April 6, 2020
Link: https://www.archaeological.org/grant/society-outreach/

This grant is meant for innovative outreach programs, replicable by other societies and beyond the regular lecture program supported by the national office (see past projects). Funds may be used for any expense related to organizing and conducting the programs, these include but are not limited to materials, travel expenses, honoraria, advertisements, and publicity. If funds are requested for a lecture, the Society should provide adequate explanation as to how this lecture is meaningfully different from the routine lecture series (e.g., involvement of new audience, development of new partnerships, educational programs, visibility in an attractive segment of the community or the like). Grant money cannot be used for things like outside management (i.e. hiring an event planner) or for basic operating costs. The grant is available to any chartered AIA society. Preference is given to new projects. Currently requests for $500 are being considered.

Eligibility: AIA Membership.
Application Process: complete form online, include justification for use of funds.

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships
Deadline: April 8, 2020
Link: https://www.neh.gov/grants/research/fellowships
Maximum award is $60,000 ($5,000 per month) open to individuals to produce book, digital material, publications, translations, other scholarly resource.

Fellowships provide recipients time to conduct research or to produce books, monographs, peer-reviewed articles, e-books, digital materials, translations with annotations or a critical apparatus, or critical editions resulting from previous research.  Projects may be at any stage of development.

Website includes past examples of narrative materials. NEH Fellowships are competitive awards granted to individual scholars pursuing projects that embody exceptional research, rigorous analysis, and clear writing.  Applications must clearly articulate a project’s value to humanities scholars, general audiences, or both.


The Fellowships program accepts applications from individuals who meet the following requirements. Citizenship U.S. citizens, whether they reside inside or outside the United States, are eligible to apply.

Foreign nationals who have been living in the United States or its jurisdictions for at least the three years prior to the application deadline are also eligible. Foreign nationals who take up permanent residence outside the United States any time between the application deadline and the end of the period of performance will forfeit their eligibility to hold an award. (Leaving the U.S. on a temporary basis is permitted.) While applicants need not have advanced degrees, individuals currently enrolled in a degree granting program are ineligible to apply. Applicants who have satisfied all the requirements for a degree and are awaiting its conferral are eligible for NEH Fellowships; but such applicants must include a letter from the dean of the conferring school or their department chair attesting to the applicant’s status as of the application deadline in Attachment 6: Degree Conferral.

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships for Advanced Social Science Research on Japan
Deadline: April 22, 2020

Link: https://www.neh.gov/grants/research/fellowships-advanced-social-science-research-japan

The Fellowships for Advanced Social Science Research on Japan program is a joint activity of the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission (JUSFC) and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The program aims to promote Japan studies in the United States, to encourage U.S.-Japanese scholarly exchange, and to support the next generation of Japan scholars in the U.S. Awards support research on modern Japanese society and political economy, Japan’s international relations, and U.S.-Japan relations. The program encourages innovative research that puts these subjects in wider regional and global contexts and is comparative and contemporary in nature. Research should contribute to scholarly knowledge or to the general public’s understanding of issues of concern to Japan and the United States. Appropriate disciplines for the research include anthropology, economics, geography, history, international relations, linguistics, political science, psychology, and sociology. Awards usually result in articles, monographs, books, e-books, digital materials, translations, editions, or other scholarly resources.

The fellowships are designed for researchers with advanced Japanese language skills whose research will require use of data, sources, and documents, onsite interviews, or other direct contact in Japanese. Fellows may undertake their projects in Japan, the United States, or both, and may include work in other countries for comparative purposes. Projects may be at any stage of development.

Maximum amount is $5,000 per month for 6-12 months.

Note: applicants can apply to ONLY ONE of the following research programs per year (NEH-Mellon Fellowships for Digital Publications, Fellowships for Advanced Social Science Research on Japan, Awards for Faculty at Hispanic-Serving Institutions, Awards for Faculty at Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Awards for Faculty at Tribal Colleges and Universities.

Application Procedures:

Complete on Grants.gov.

Opportunities marked with an (*) require completion of a clearance form with DePaul’s Development Office.

Additional funding search tools are available on the ORS website at: https://offices.depaul.edu/ors/pre-award-services/identifying-funding/funding-search-tools/Pages/default.aspx

Good Work Does Go Noticed

Congratulations to Sarah Read, assistant professor in the Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and Discourse, for the award she recently received for a paper she delivered at a professional technical communication conference at the University of Texas in Austin. The James M. Lufkin Award for Best International Professional Communication Conference Paper is given annually by the IEEE Professional Communication Society in recognition of work that supports their mission to promote effective communication within scientific, engineering and technical environments.

In the paper, Sarah and her co-author and fellow award-winner Michael E. Papka propose a more comreadaward_0001prehensive model of the document cycling process to capture significant activities not normally found in conventional project management plans. The paper emerged from an ethnographic study she conducted as a guest faculty researcher at Argonne National Laboratory where she analyzed the technical documentation and reporting processes that went into creating the facility’s 2014 annual report.

Operated by The University of Chicago Argonne LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy, the research lab and its high-powered supercomputer are used by scientists from academia and industry. Each year it produces a lengthy, polished report for the funder, “an extended statement about how the facility has met or exceeded the performance metrics set by the funder based on the previous review process,” as explained in the paper.

Sarah’s interviews with staff and her observations of the lab’s operations revealed hidden activities involved in gathering and generating data that indirectly fed into the annual report. This data-gathering had become incorporated into regular operational activities and fell outside the designated time frames for generating reportable information. These submerged activities not only informed the report but constituted a creative endeavor in their own right. (See a previous SSRC blog about Sarah’s project in which she vividly described the efforts demanded of staff in learning how to “write down the machine.”)

They did not arise sui generis. Papka, a senior scientist at Argonne, is the director of the Leadership Computing Center and an associate professor of computer science at Northern Illinois University. In 2012 he revised the annual report document creation process “from an annual last-minute all-out effort to a well-managed, well-paced drafting and revision process,” according to the paper. Reporting became on-going, rotating and cut across multiple divisions of the facility. Crucially, it entailed the development of processes “to more efficiently and accurately generate” reportable performance data.

The success of those efforts leads the paper’s authors to raise some provocative questions, including whether the staff time and effort required to write an annual report—a full-color, printed and designed document totaling 126 pages in 2014—is warranted when reportable information becomes readily accessible and available. “It is interesting to reflect upon how the imperative to develop a more accurate and efficient annual operational assessment reporting process ended up building processes at the facility…that could make the annually produced report unnecessary,” they point out. And they ask teachers and students of professional and technical writing to recognize and understand that the means of producing reportable information for the periodic reports so common to large organizations “have as much if not more value for the organization than the finished reporting document.”

The SSRC likes to think that our own support of Sarah’s research contributed to this project, from her use of ATLAS.ti, the qualitative data analysis application available in our computer lab, to analyze her data, to her ongoing participation in the SSRC’s Accountability Group in which tenure-track LAS faculty meet twice a month to set and discuss self-imposed professional and research goals. She worked on the paper during spring break at the off-campus faculty research retreat in Wisconsin that the SSRC organized to offer faculty designated writing time away from usual distractions. Sarah plans to develop the epistemic dimensions of the model in another paper.

SSRC Solicits Applications for the Second Annual Academic Research Retreat

One of the missions of the Social Science Research Center is to facilitate and support faculty research.  To this end, the SSRC is hosting a faculty research retreat in Kenosha, WI during Spring Break March 20-23, 2017.  During this time, selected faculty will participate in two and a half days of intensive research time.

The retreat will take place in a rental property large enough to accommodate 3-5 researchers for three nights.  The retreat events will be organized by a facilitator, who will organize the retreat and conduct accountability sessions.  Attendees will be responsible for their own meals and for securing transportation for themselves to the retreat location.

Applications are due by 5pm Monday February 27, 2017 and should be emailed to Jessi Bishop-Royse at jbishopr@depaul.edu.  In 2-3 pages, potential applicants should indicate the name of their project, its current status, and what they intend to complete during the retreat.  The competitive review process will favor established research projects over those that need more development.

Last year, participants from Sociology,  Public Health, The School for New Learning, and Writing, Reading, and Discourse attended the retreat.  Generally, participants appreciated the opportunity to network with faculty from other departments.  On average, participants completed about 90% of planned research tasks.  Two of the four participants submitted manuscripts for publication within one month of the retreat.  Additionally, the manuscript that participant Sarah Read completed during the retreat was recognized for the James M. Lufkin Award for Best International Professional Communication Conference Paper.

Tentative Schedule

Monday 3/20

6pm-8pm Check in and Welcome Chat, Dinner +Evening Accountability Meeting

8-10pm Writing Session

Tuesday 3/21

8am-9am: Morning Accountability Meeting/Breakfast

9-Noon: Morning Writing Session

Noon-1pm: Afternoon Break

1pm-4pm: Afternoon Writing Session

4pm-7pm: Evening break.

7pm-9pm: Evening Writing Session

Wednesday 3/22

8am-9am: Morning Accountability Meeting/Breakfast

9-Noon: Morning Writing Session

Noon-1pm: Afternoon Break

1pm-4pm: Afternoon Writing Session

4pm-7pm: Evening break.

7pm-9pm: Evening Writing Session

Thursday 3/23

8am-9am: Morning Accountability Meeting/Breakfast

9-11: Morning Writing Session

11-12: Evaulation +Check Out

Questions should be directed to Jessica Bishop-Royse by email (jbishopr@depaul.edu).

SSRC at the CCHE Health Disparities and Social Justice Conference 2016

Last week DePaul’s MPH Program and the Center for Community Health Equity co-hosted the Health Disparities and Social Justice Conference at the Loop Campus in conjunction with DePaul’s MPH program.  The day was full of fantastic events regarding health disparities and social justice issues in Chicago and beyond.  The opening keynote was delivered by Patricia O’Campo of the Centre for Urban Health Solutions at St. Michael’s Hospital in Ontario, Toronto.

Friends of the center Noam Ostrander and Fernando de Maio participated in a panel discussion of the Chicago Health Equity Reader, a year long project whose ultimate aim is to produce a reader of the essential readings on Chicago Health.


SSRC Director and Sociology Faculty member Greg Scott was on hand with the Safe Shape exhibit as well as two collaborative film projects (Everywhere but Safe and Making a Place Called Safe) he has produced with  VOCAL-NY and the San Francisco Drug Users Union.  Noam Ostrander presented his collaborative project with SSRC Senior Research Methodologist Jessica Bishop-Royse on seasonal patterns in homicide mortality in the US.

The event brought together a wide variety of public health professionals, students, researchers, public officials, and community stakeholders, who were afforded the opportunity to engage with presenters and provide feedback and comments.

Field Learning

Newly graduated Master of Public Health (MPH) students Adenike Sosina and Joselyn Williams recently talked about the extra-curricular skills they acquired as research assistants at the Center for Community Health Equity (CCHE). Their analysis of one project will be displayed at the 9th annual Health Disparities & Social Justice Conference that CCHE and MPH will host at the DePaul Center on August 12.

In a conference poster, they will summarize the focus group discussions that CCHE helped Rush conduct in conjunction with Rush Medical Center’s comprehensive Community Health Needs Assessment. The focus groups were made up of residents and stakeholders from the 8 Chicago West Side community areas (West Town, Austin, East Garfield Park, West Garfield Park, Near West Side, North Lawndale, South Lawndale, and Lower West Side) and 3 near west suburbs (Forest Park, Oak Park, and River Forest) that Rush serves. They were formed to discover what Adenike described as “the impact of the communities’ perceptions, their needs, things they believed to be beneficial.” That should help Rush understand what makes a good community and what relationships community members value, Joselyn added.

The two researchers began working at CCHE and with CCHE Co-Director and Associate Professor of Sociology Fernando De Maio in 2015—Adenike as CCHE Program Assistant and Joselyn as CCHE Graduate Assistant. Founded jointly in 2015 and based at DePaul, CCHE is a partnership between DPU and Rush designed to link social scientists, students, community groups, and health care professionals in a search for data-based solutions to community health problems.

Last fall and winter Adenike and Joselyn collaborated with CCHE on the assessment report Rush prepares every three years to evaluate the overall state of health in its service areas and to develop internal implementation strategies and community collaAdenikeborations. Using NVivo software, they later analyzed 11 “massive” focus group transcripts—also prepared by a number of DePaul and Rush students—to identify recurring themes such as resources, education, socialization, social division, health care, safety, responsibility, and ownership, Adenike said.

“The software itself served as a resource,” said Joselyn, a self-describJoselyned ‘data nerd’. “[It’s] kind of intuitive. There’s not a lot of bulky things you have to have previous help with.” The researchers also utilized SSRC technical and consulting resources, for transcribing the focus group discussions and for training in GIS and mapping fundamentals. The poster will illustrate the findings of their analysis.

“There was an array of other concerns, besides health, in which they wanted their voices to be heard,” said Adenike. She was impressed by the range of what focus group participants wanted to convey. Across communities, focus groups cited the lack of resources, including insufficient recreational outlets for youth, job opportunities, access to retail and good food, and inadequacies in the city’s educational system.

“…It’s like we’re almost a forgotten community…,” a member of the North Lawndale focus group complained. “And if we could just get a lot of these young guys some work and young women and young men to work, it will be a big change in the community,” a West Garfield Park participant offered.

In conversations about what they liked about their communities, participants voiced “probably a lot more positive thoughts around social cohesion,” Joselyn observed. “Most identified with their community,” she said. “I didn’t feel like anyone said ‘this is per se a bad community.’ They recognized the good and the bad. They wanted the community to be better.” Discussions about how Rush might partner with the community produced suggestions for collaborating with schools, operating mobile clinics to provide services such as back-to-school vaccinations, or pairing medical school students with community teens around health issues and mentoring, Adenike noted.

Both MPH graduates agreed that their work at CCHE leaves them feeling better prepared as they start their own careers. Joselyn, who made some GIS maps for the assessment to show where Rush ranked in child opportunity and hardship indices, appreciated the opportunity to work alongside hospital administrators and to observe how a big organization undertakes a report of this scope. She was struck by the length of the assessment process.

This fall Joselyn will begin teaching English to elementary students in the Gyeongbuk province in South Korea. From there she hopes to explore opportunities for a career abroad in global health. Adenike wants to work in community health practice after her position at CCHE ends in late summer. She’s especially interested in childhood obesity interventions.

At CCHE, graduate and undergraduate student researchers will continue to gain project-based experience working on analyses of the new Healthy Chicago Survey, the creation of an “Index of Concentration at the Extremes” for Chicago census tracts, and comparative analyses of health inequities in Chicago and other cities. DePaul faculty and students will continue collaborating with the Chicago Department of Public Health and other groups across the city as they build on CCHE’s contribution to “Healthy Chicago 2.0”, the city’s four-year initiative to assess and improve health and well-being and reduce inequities among Chicago communities.

Visit CCHE’s website to see the Rush Community Health Needs Assessment report and to learn more about the upcoming Health Disparities & Social Justice Conference at DePaul. Faculty or students doing research on faculty projects who want to access NVivo are invited to contact the SSRC where the program is available in our Lincoln Park computer lab or through remote connection.