2021 NEH American Rescue Plan (ARP): Humanities Organizations

The Syracuse University Office of Research announces the limited submission competition for the Nation Endowment for the Humanities American Rescue Plan: Humanities Organizations funding opportunity. https://www.neh.gov/program/american-rescue-plan-humanities-organizations 

Syracuse University may submit one proposal to this National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) American Rescue Plan (ARP) funding opportunity. NEH will consider parent organizations (Syracuse University) and their subordinates (e.g., individual academic departments, Special Collections Research Center, SU Art Museum, SU Press, etc.) to be a single applicant for the purposes of eligibility. This means that any University-affiliated organizations with 501(c)3 designation, distinct advisory boards, and separate operating budgets may not apply directly as individual organizations to this funding opportunity.

In the 2020 NEH CARES Act grants for emergency relief funding, a similar grant competition, only 23% of the 317 awards went to institutions of higher education. Of these, the majority went to well-defined programs or activities. The full list of awards is provided here. While we encourage cross-unit collaboration to increase a proposal’s competitiveness, such partnerships should be centered on a cohesive set of activities or operational support.

The internal deadline for 2-page proposals is Wednesday, April 21. The external, NEH deadline is Friday, May 14.

See full details below. Apply here.

Sponsor Program Announcement: https://www.neh.gov/program/american-rescue-plan-humanities-organizations
Number of Possible Internal Nominees: 1
Internal Submission Due Date: Wednesday, April 21, 2021 at 5:00 p.m.
Sponsor Deadline: Friday, May 14, 2021 at 5:00 p.m.

A Limited Submission Opportunity (LSO) is a funding opportunity in which the sponsor sets an institutional limit for the number of proposals it will accept. In order to participate in an LSO, Syracuse University must organize to submit our most competitive proposal(s). This requires an internal competition and institutional peer review.

Important Submission Note

Syracuse University may submit one proposal to the NEH American Rescue Plan (ARP): Humanities Organizations funding opportunity. NEH will consider parent organizations (Syracuse University) and their subordinates (e.g., individual academic departments, Special Collections Research Center, SU Art Museum, SU Press, etc.) to be a single applicant for the purposes of eligibility. This means that any University-affiliated organizations with 501(c)3 designation, distinct advisory boards, and separate operating budgets may not apply directly as individual organizations to this funding opportunity.

In the 2020 NEH Cares Act grants for emergency relief funding, a similar grant competition, only 23% of the 317 awards went to institutions of higher education. Of these, the majority went to well-defined programs or activities. The full list of awards is provided here. While we encourage cross-unit collaboration to increase a proposal’s competitiveness, such partnerships should be centered on a cohesive set of activities or operational support.

Synopsis of the NEH American Rescue Program (ARP): Humanities Organizations

The purpose of the NEH American Rescue Plan (ARP): Humanities Organizations emergency relief program is to assist institutions and organizations working in the humanities that have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Applicants may propose new humanities projects or focus on sustaining core humanities programs and activities.

Through this funding opportunity, NEH will award grants to museums, libraries and archives, historic sites, independent research institutions, academic presses, professional organizations, colleges and universities, and other humanities organizations across the country to help them continue to advance their mission during the interruption of their operations due to the coronavirus pandemic. Institutions of higher education are encouraged to include academic libraries, museums, academic presses, and research centers in a single proposal.

See the full Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for more details.

Please also consult the NEH ARP: Humanities Organizations Frequently Asked Questions.

Funding Amounts and Period of Performance

Maximum budget amount: up to $500,000

Allowable costs include, but are not limited to:

  • personnel costs (salaries and fringe benefits) for individuals employed by the applicant and dedicated to the proposed activities
  • fees for consultants and contractors
  • supplies and materials necessary to carry out the proposed activities
  • equipment necessary to carry out the proposed activities (not to exceed 20 percent of the total funds requested)
  • general operating support (typically recovered through indirect costs)

The period of performance may begin as early as October 1, 2021 and as late as January 1, 2022.

Cost Sharing/Matching

Cost sharing/matching is not required for this program.

Application Materials

Applicants to the Syracuse University internal competition must submit a 2-pg single-spaced project narrative that includes brief descriptions of:

  1. Humanities mission and record of contribution
  2. Project justification
  3. Proposed activities and audience
  4. Jobs and personnel
  5. Institutional capacity

For an idea of what these sections should contain, refer to the section, “Content and Form of Application – Narrative” in the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) here. Please respond to the above criteria to the best of your ability at the time of the limited submission deadline.

Limited Submission Selection Process
Applications will be reviewed by the interim Vice President for Research and other senior University administration. Applications may be merged based on competitiveness of submissions, as assessed by responsiveness to review criteria. Under the peer review process, limited submission applications will be evaluated in accordance with the NEH review criteria located in the NOFO under “Application Review Information.” These review criteria are abbreviated below:

  1. The degree to which the applicant advances the humanities; the importance of the proposed humanities activities to the applicant’s mission, to the cultural and educational sectors, and/or to the general public; and the feasibility of successfully completing the proposed activities within the period of performance.
  2. The extent to which the applicant has clearly articulated the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the organization and provided relevant evidence to support its claims.
  3. The degree to which the project will support the creation of new humanities programs or sustain/maintain existing programs threatened by the coronavirus pandemic; and the degree to which the proposed project will retain humanities jobs threatened by the coronavirus pandemic or create new jobs.
  4. The reasonableness of the proposed budget in relation to the proposed activities.

Reviewers with be internal to the University. These reviewers are not likely to be specialists in your sub-field, so it is advised that applicants avoid excessive jargon.

The Principal Investigators (PIs) of projects selected to move forward with the nomination to the funder will be notified by email on or before Friday, April 30, 2021. Full applications are due to NEH on May 14, 2021.

PI Responsibilities

If a proposal is selected and the PI or team decides to forgo an application, they must notify the Office of Research within five days of the selection notice. This allows another proposal to be selected and move forward. If the PI fails to submit a proposal and has not notified the Office of Research, the PI runs the risk of being disqualified from future LSO competitions.

PI Eligibility

For any sponsored research projects, the applicant must be eligible to serve as Principal Investigator for the project, unless otherwise noted in the LSO. Please see our PI Eligibility requirements to ensure you are eligible.

Questions: Email LimitedSubmissions@syr.edu

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