Pozen Research Grants for PhD Students

Award History

The Pozen Family Center for Human Rights awards grants to support doctoral student research which will make a significant contribution to the field of human rights studies. We look for projects that engage with human rights concepts, discourse, or advocacy as related to your research.


The Pozen Family Center for Human Rights typically grants three to five Pozen Research Grants of up to $5,000 to University of Chicago doctoral students in any year of their program. The PFCHR supports both pre-dissertation research that will be critical for students writing applications for external dissertation research fellowships, as well as dissertation research when external or other internal funds are not sufficient. Priority will be given to PhD students from the Divisions of the Humanities or Social Sciences. Successful applicants in the past have come from Anthropology, Comparative Human Development, History, Political Science, Sociology, and the School of Social Service Administration. 

Applications are released in the winter and due in the spring. Proposals should be for projects that can be finished between June of the application year and the following September (15 months). Funds can be used to support travel or other expenses related to research projects such as books, software, copying, temporary lodging, and recording devices or cameras. Upon completion of the project, a report of not more than 2500 words on the outcome of the research should be sent to the Pozen Family Center for Human Rights.

2015 Application Process

The 2015 Application Process is now closed, and the grants have been awarded. Congratulations to:

Hadji Bakara, English
Mary Bunn, School of Social Service Administration
Isaac Hock, Political Science
Emma Mackinnon, Political Science
Erin McFee, Comparative Human Development
Ilana Miller, History
Camille Roussel, Comparative Human Development
Sayantan Saha Roy, Anthropology
Vera Shikhelman, Law
Gabriel Velez, Comparative Human Development
Lael Weinberger, History

2016 Application Process

We will open the 2016 applications in Spring quarter of 2016.

A faculty committee of PFCHR board members reviews all applications. Awards are generally announced in mid-May.

All applications include:

  1. Statement of not more than 1000 words outlining the purpose of the research and its relevance to the study of Human Rights
  2. Tentative budget, including listing of support committed and requested from other sources
  3. C.V. and a list of your dissertation committee members

Letter of Support

Each applicant is required to obtain a letter of support from your major faculty advisor. Letters must be uploaded directly to the website by the recommender or sent via dossier service (such as Interfolio) to Tara Peters.


Questions may be directed to Susan Gzesh, PFCHR Executive Director, by email or during office hours on Tuesdays from 2:00-4:00pm at the PFCHR office.