Summer Research Fellowship

CNES funds pre-dissertation and dissertation summer research awards to UCLA graduate students conducting research abroad with a focus on the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

Applicants are expected to spend a minimum of four (4) weeks on overseas research during summer 2020. Project descriptions must demonstrate how the project will advance the knowledge of MENA societies, histories, or cultures. Awards are up to $5,000.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: March 1, 2020, 11:59 pm (PST)
The next application cycle will open in the Fall 2020.


All elements of the fellowship application are online and must be submitted by the advertised deadline. Letters of recommendation must also be submitted online by the advertised deadline. Late or incomplete applications will not be considered for funding. Any elements to be uploaded should be in DOC or PDF format, with the file extension appended.

1. Curriculum vitae (no more than three (3) pages of 12-point font)

2. Abstract (no more than 100 words): provide the project/dissertation title and briefly describe the topic of research.

3. Summer research proposal (no more than two (2) double-spaced pages of 12-point font): describe the research project in terms that can be understood by an academic audience who may not specialize in your chosen field. Include a detailed outline of the research agenda (e.g. weekly research activities, research locations such as archives and libraries, etc.), and explain how the grant would further it. Must demonstrate how your project will advance knowledge of MENA societies, histories, or cultures. Include how your research will address pedagogical concerns or generate innovative approaches to teaching, and how it will engage and inform expertise and contribute to areas of national need including government service, business, the non-profit sector, and academia.

4. Itemized budget (no more than one (1) page of 12-point font): include items such as international and in-country travel, visa fees, overseas housing, library or archival fees, etc. While the maximum award amount is $5000, the actual award amount is based on overseas project costs and justifiable project-related expenses.

5. Letter of recommendation: include a letter of recommendation from the applicant's principal faculty advisor or committee chair. The recommenders should address the relevance of the proposed summer research for the applicant's dissertation project, as well as the applicant's overall academic and professional potential. All recommendations must be submitted through the online system by the advertised deadline. The applicant will provide the names and contact information of the recommenders in the online application; once the application has been submitted, the recommenders will receive automated emails from the system, instructing them where and how to upload their recommendations. Applicants should therefore ensure that they submit the application well in advance of the advertised deadline, and that they have provided the correct contact information for the recommenders. A submitted application can be edited up until the deadline.

• All application materials must be submitted online by the advertised deadline. Any materials submitted in hard copy or via email will not be accepted or reviewed.
• UCLA Graduate Council has established a policy of Maximum Limit on the total amount of support a graduate student may receive. In addition, certain grants and fellowships are incompatible and may not be held concurrently. You must inform CNES in writing and obtain approval to combine several funding sources before accepting any other awards for this project.
• Funds must be used during the summer period for which they are awarded; no carryover of awards will be permitted.
• Grantees must submit: (1) proof of travel and (2) a final activities and results report (one - two (1 - 2) pages of 12-point font). Please include information regarding your research methodologies and how the grant enhanced your training and professional development. These should be submitted via email to

Johanna Romero, CNES Program Manager


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Published: Tuesday, January 8, 2019