ARISC Small Grants

Deadline: Friday, December 3, 2021

The American Research Institute of the South Caucasus (ARISC) announces the availability of small grants in support of research in the South Caucasus (Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia).

Eligibility and Priority:

The ARISC Small Grants are open to graduate and undergraduate students of the South Caucasus. Proposals will be judged on their quality and on the potential of the research to strengthen scholarship on the South Caucasus.

Award Amount:

Awards will be made for up to $300 each. The purpose of the grant is to help offset research costs for student scholars in the South Caucasus.

Additional Requirements:

Grantees are expected to give an ARISC-sponsored presentation on a subject related to their research upon completion of their project. The grantee will acknowledge ARISC in any publication or presentation that emerges from the research carried out during the grant.

Application requirements:

Please send a complete application including the application form*, a project statement of not more than 3 pages, work schedule, itemized budget (see sample here), curriculum vitae, and two letters of recommendation by Friday, December 3, 2021, to All information must be received by the deadline in order for the applicant to be considered for the grant.

*This form needs to be downloaded to be completed. You will need to use Adobe Reader (free) to complete the form. This link shows how to type into the document using the free Adobe Reader DC.

Special notes during Coronavirus pandemic:

Applicants are encouraged to submit two research design and methodologies sections with matching budgets for each:

  1. Scenario A: scenario with travel within the country where the applicant lives; and
  2. Scenario B: scenario with work from home or within the country where the applicant lives. Scenario B allows for research to be conducted in the case that travel throughout the South Caucasus cannot be carried out during the project timeline due to the pandemic. In this scenario, consider the following questions: How can you address your research question if you cannot travel? What methods, tools, and analyses can you conduct from home or the country where you live? Please be certain to adhere to appropriate safety protocols.  

For Scenario B, instead of funding travel costs (transportation, lodging, M&IE), the budget may cover costs such as rent, childcare, etc. so that the fellow may focus on their research during the time period of their fellowship. The Scenario B option budget may include translation costs, hiring a research assistant in a different South Caucasus country to do archival research if the fellow cannot travel, digital research projects, or publication fees for research. Publication fees could include website registration/server fees, or open access fees. Think of this the same way you would think about the costs of research in another country: What are the costs that would allow you to focus on and conduct research in the context of the pandemic? Attach a separate sheet to address Scenario B.

If awarded and fellows may to travel or otherwise conduct their proposed research, then Scenario A will be in effect. If not, then Scenario B comes into effect.

Note that due to the current COVID-19 crisis, fellowship travel will resume when travel restrictions are lifted. Please list tentative dates in your application and, if applicable to the research, a travel plan. ARISC will continue to monitor the situation and will work with fellows to confirm release of funding and/or travel plans when the fellowships are awarded.

Terms and Conditions

  1. The ARISC Small Grant is limited to citizens of Armenia, Azerbaijan, or Georgia. Proof of citizenship or permanent resident status (i.e. photocopy of passport, etc.) must be shown upon award notification.
  2. Grantees must complete their projects by August 31, 2022. Any unused portion of the stipend must be returned to ARISC by this date.
  3. A report and final accounting with original receipts are required to be submitted to ARISC within 30 days of grant completion and no later than September 30, 2022.
  4. All applicants must be Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Ph.D. students enrolled in degree-granting programs in Armenia, Azerbaijan, or Georgia. Priority will be given to Master’s and Ph.D. students. Students graduating in spring 2022 are eligible to apply.
  5. Allowable costs include transportation, lodging, per diem, and/or research costs. Funds may be requested for travel to training workshops.
  6. Grantees are expected to make contact with the ARISC country representative in each country or countries where they will be conducting research as soon as possible upon acceptance of the award.
  7. If the study involves living human subjects, proof of Institutional Review Board (IRB) or the equivalent from your institution approval must be provided, if relevant, upon receipt of grant.
  8. While ARISC encourages scholars to apply to other federal and private sources in addition to the ARISC small grants, ARISC grantees who receive additional awards must contact ARISC immediately to discuss possible date and stipend adjustments.
  9. ARISC is unable to provide health or other insurance to its grantees.
  10. Grant recipients are eligible to reapply for a second ARISC Small Grant three years after completion of their most recent award.
  11. ARISC does not advise grantees on tax questions concerning their stipend.

ARISC does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, gender, religion, national origin, physical or mental disability, medical condition, ancestry, marital status, age, sexual orientation, or status as a covered veteran.

Selection Process

Grantees will be selected by the ARISC grants panel made up of scholars with experience conducting regional and trans-regional research. Please note that readers may not be specialists in your field, so applicants are advised to write for a general professional audience. Applicants will be judged according to the following criteria:

  • Merits of the proposal for significance, relevance, and potential contribution to regional and/or trans-regional scholarly research;
  • Applicant qualifications;
  • Research design and methodology;
  • Significance to the applicant’s field;
  • Significance to needs and interests of host country and ARISC’s mission;
  • Feasibility in terms of resources and amount of time allocated to the project;
  • Proficiency in the language required to complete research project, if applicable.


Notification of grant status will be made available to each applicant via email in February 2022.

Important Notes Regarding Applications

  • The applicant is responsible for notifying referees of their request for letters and for ensuring those letters are submitted to ARISC by the deadline. The letters of recommendation must be sent directly from letter recommenders to by the application deadline.
  • All references must be in English. If the reference is in any language other than English, an English translation must be provided.
  • One of the applicant’s letters should be from their academic advisor.
  • ARISC’s method of submission is via email. Once an application is submitted it cannot be resubmitted or edited. This also applies to letters of recommendation.
  • Notification of grant status will be made available to each applicant via email in February 2022. Grantees are advised that it can take up to six months to obtain the necessary research clearance and should plan accordingly.

Helpful Resources for Grant Writing

Past Awards


– Khanim Askarova (Azerbaijan State University of Culture and Arts): Research of Azerbaijani Professional Music of Oral Tradition in American Ethnomusicology

– Tofig Shahniyarov (ADA University): Why is it crucial for Azerbaijan to have the European Convention on Human Rights as a Part of its Legislation System?


– Sose Grigoryan (Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography, NAS RA): A Religious Culture of Armenian Catholics of South Caucasus

– Maryam Topchishvili (Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University): Causes of Armenia’s economic growth between 2009-2019 years