Cross-national Interdisciplinary Research Grant (2021-22)


The Harvard-Yenching Institute is offering Cross-national Interdisciplinary Research Grants to HYI alumni for the 2021-22 academic year. This grant is offered for two or more Asia-based HYI alumni to collaborate on a small (2-4 person) cross-national, cross-disciplinary research project, likely to result in a publication. This is a new initiative intended to help compensate for pandemic isolation by encouraging more communication across countries, disciplines, and generations. Preference will be given to projects involving HYI alumni from multiple countries or regions.

Each project should involve at least 2 HYI alumni, and may include 1-2 other Asia-based scholars who are not HYI alumni.

Terms and conditions

Grants will be offered during the 2021-22 academic year (July 2021 – June 2022). Applicants should be HYI alumni from the visiting scholars and visiting fellows and training programs. The research group may also include 1-2 other scholars who are not HYI alumni. Grant recipients will remain in Asia and collaborate remotely.

Grant proposals of up to $30,000 will be considered.  A detailed budget for research expenses to cover such items as field work costs, procurement of research materials, inter-Asia travel and project meetings, hiring research assistants or editors, modest honoraria, and the like should be submitted with the application.  The need for each requested budget item should be clearly explained in the project proposal.

Each project must identify the primary PI and her/his institution on the application, and should also include overhead charges (if required by the PI’s institution) on the proposed budget.

Grantees are encouraged to participate in HYI remote activities. They will submit an interim report to HYI, and will give a public presentation at the project’s conclusion.

The collaborative research projects should take place within a year following the HYI’s approval. The project must be started by June 2022 at the latest.


Applicants must be HYI former visiting scholars, former visiting fellows or former training program fellowship recipients, and must be currently affiliated with an academic institution in Asia as full-time faculty or researchers. The project may also include one or two non-HYI alumni participants. These participants must also be full-time faculty or researchers affiliated with an institution of higher education in Asia.

Please check with HYI before applying if you have any questions about eligibility or are uncertain if you are eligible based on your position.

Preference will be given to applications involving alumni from more than one country.

Application Process

There are two deadlines for this program: July 15 and October 15. Please submit one application for the group by the deadline.  The application must include:

  • Application form (each collaborating participant should fill out their own form)
  • One research proposal (for the whole group) with a tentative schedule
    • What is the subject of your research plan? Please specify respective contributions each participant will make to this cross-national, cross-disciplinary research project. Give a description in English in about 3-5 pages, explaining your group research plans.
  • Each collaborating participant’s CV (curriculum vitae), in English, including employment, publications and honors
  • A budget for research-related expenses
    • Including inter-Asia travel, hiring research assistants or editors, carrying out fieldwork, procuring research materials, modest honoraria, overhead charges (if required by the PI’s institution), etc.
    • The maximum budget is $30,000 USD
  • One recommendation letter (written in English or translated into English) for each applicant in the group (HYI alumni and non-HYI alumni alike) is required. Each letter should be from a scholar familiar with both the applicant’s research/scholarship and the area of specialty that the group’s research project proposes to cover. Applicants should share a copy of their collaborative proposal with letter writers and ask that their references comment specifically on the merits of the proposed collaborative project. Letters should be emailed directly to by the application deadline.

One group member can send all application files together to by the application deadline.

Once the grant is approved, HYI will work out detailed arrangements with the recipients.