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UUSC Participatory Action Research Fellowships FAQs

What are the UUSC Participatory Action Research Fellowships? 

The UUSC Participatory Action Research Fellowships are two year-long grants awarded to one experienced activist and one graduate student or recent graduate. The fellowships seek applicants who are committed to community-led research practices that advance systemic change and the protection of human rights. Fellows are expected to conduct participatory research projects focused in one of UUSC’s programmatic areas (Climate Forced Displacement, Migrant Justice, Disaster Justice), in collaboration with UUSC’s partners and their research team. Successful applicants will be chosen based on their previous research and activism experience, their understanding of participatory methods, and the alignment of their proposal with UUSC and their partners’ human rights priorities. 

What is the theme for the 2021 Fellowships? 

In 2021, the Fellowships are focused broadly on the future of migration, disaster, and climate activism in a post-pandemic world. 

Who can apply for the Fellowships? 

The fellowships have two categories, Experienced Activists and Graduate Students 

Experienced Activists: Applicants to the Experienced Activist Research fellowship are expected to have at least 10 years of experience as grassroots of base building activists.  

Graduate Students: Applicants to the Graduate Research fellowship are current or recent graduate students (Graduated up to two years before July 31, 2021). We encourage applicants from a broad range of disciplinary backgrounds to apply, including, but not limited to law, social sciences, public health, humanities, and interdisciplinary programs. 

What are the assessment criteria for the Fellowships? 

Applications for the Experienced Activist Research Fellowship will be assessed based on the following criteria: 

  • Creativity and community impact potential of the project proposal; 
  • Applicant’s vision for the role of participatory-action research methodologies in the advancement of human rights and justice today; 
  • Relevance of participatory-action research methodologies to tackle proposed project; 
  • Alignment of proposal with UUSC’s programmatic priorities; and 
  • Pertinence of the proposal for the priorities of UUSC’s current partners (learn more about our partners here). 

Applications for the Graduate Research Fellowship will be assessed based on the following criteria: 

  • Alignment of applicant’s skills and interests with UUSC’s programmatic priorities;  
  • Applicant’s vision for the role of participatory-action research methodologies in the advancement of human rights and justice today; 
  • Demonstrated experience conducting impactful participatory-action research with community-based organizations; and 
  • Potential of applicant’s background to contribute to the work UUSC’s current partners (learn more about our partners here).

What is the selection process? 

The applications will be reviewed by UUSC and a small group of applicants will be selected for an interview. From the interviewed applicants, UUSC will select one fellow for each category. 

What are the key dates and timeline of the Fellowships’ selection process? 

Applications open: March 2021 

Applications close: April 30, 2021 

Interviews: May 2021 

Fellows announced: May 28, 2021  

What do the fellows receive? 

Experimented activist research fellow will receive $30,000 USD 

Graduate research fellow will receive $20,000 USD  

What is required of fellows during the Fellowships? 

Fellows will meet UUSC staff and partners to identify research opportunities and needs, collaborate on and/or manage a PAR project with UUSC and at least one of its partners. Share research findings and develop research products with UUSC and partners no later than a year after the fellowships’ start date.