Collaborative Heritage Management Fellowship in Azerbaijan, Georgia

Deadline extended: Date Due: Thursday, December 23, 2021

Contact Information: info “at” arisc. org

Project Description:

The American Research Institute of the South Caucasus invites proposals from collaborative teams in support of the preservation and conservation of Azerbaijan’s or Georgia’s archaeological and historical heritage. This ARISC program seeks to foster joint work between American and Azerbaijani or Georgian scholars and institutions dedicated to the proper curation and preservation of heritage materials such as artifacts, sites, and manuscripts. Successful applications will demonstrate active, substantive collaborations that not only contribute to heritage conservation but also demonstrate efforts to build capacity and enhance local knowledge of current techniques and approaches to heritage management. These fellowships require active participation of both American and Azerbaijani or Georgian principal investigators in all aspects of the collaborative project.

Examples of potential projects include:

  • Restoration of threatened archaeological remains
  • Stabilization of historical resources
  • Long-term protection for archaeological sites or historical monuments
  • Curation and permanent exhibition of heritage materials
  • Cataloging and recording of collections
  • Digitization of heritage materials for wider public access
  • Enhancement of conservation lab facilities
  • Advanced training for specialists

Given the level of funding, these awards can also be used as seed funds to demonstrate the feasibility of a pilot program and/or in concert with funds from parallel sources.

Scholars are expected to be in the South Caucasus for the duration of the project – remote research projects will not be funded. Fellows will be required to either give a talk or run a workshop pertinent to the subject of the fellowship while in Azerbaijan or Georgia.

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


Proposals are submitted jointly by a team of two or more scholars and/or specialists. At least one must be a citizen of the U.S. and one a citizen of Azerbaijan or Georgia. Proposals must show evidence of endorsement from all relevant institutions in Azerbaijan or Georgia in order to demonstrate the feasibility of the undertaking. These fellowships are not intended for primary research. The participants must demonstrate that the project requires true collaboration between both PIs, as well as active participation by both PIs in all aspects of the work required to complete the project. 

Late, incomplete, or ineligible applications will not be reviewed.

Award Information:

Awards are made for a period of up to three months during which the work described in the proposal must be completed. Extensions will be granted only with the explicit approval of ARISC. Award checks will be sent to the US collaborator. Awardees are responsible for tax payments in association with this award, both in the US and in Azerbaijan or Georgia. Fellowships will not exceed $4000.

Fellowship recipients are eligible to reapply for a second ECA-funded fellowship three years after completion of their most recent award.

Application Information:

Applicants are encouraged to contact ARISC in advance of submitting an application in order to confirm eligibility. A complete application will include the following materials:

  1. Application Form (This form must be downloaded from 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.
  2. Narrative description of the project (not to exceed 3 double spaced pages).
  3. Supporting documents: up to 2 pages of illustrative materials such as photos or maps.
  4. Itemized budget and budget summary (must show funds requested from ARISC as well as other current and pending support).
  5. CVs for all participants, including associated personnel (limit to 2 pages each including most relevant experience and publications).
  6. Evidence of endorsement from all relevant institutions in Azerbaijan or Georgia.


A portion of the fellowship funds will be withheld until the recipient submits their Final Report on their project.

Funds may not be used to pay a PI’s salary.

Funding from this award cannot be used to cover visa expenses or the purchase of insurance.

Meals and Incidental expenses may not exceed the rates set by the US Department of State.

Fellows must complete their fellowships and submit a Final Report to ARISC by August 31, 2022. Any unused portion of the stipend must be returned to ARISC by this date.

If any item of equipment or supplies purchased with fellowship funds at an original cost in excess of $750 still has monetary value, the resale value must be returned to ARISC; or, upon approval by ARISC, such equipment may be donated to an educational or research institution in the South Caucasus in the name of ARISC.

Fellows must acknowledge ARISC in any publications and presentations.

Award recipients are responsible for ensuring proper medical and evacuation insurance coverage during their time in the field in the South Caucasus. Proof of insurance coverage will be required before disbursement of fellowship funds.

Proof of Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval must be provided, if relevant, upon receipt of fellowship.

Applications must be written in English and submitted electronically to info “at”

All travel between the US and South Caucasus that uses funds from the fellowship program must meet the provisions of the “Fly America Act.”

Given changing travel restrictions and/or travel warnings to many countries, fellows must contact ARISC prior to purchasing airfare.

While ARISC encourages scholars to apply to other federal and private sources in addition to the ARISC fellowships, ARISC fellows who receive additional awards must contact ARISC immediately to discuss possible date and stipend adjustments. Fellows may not hold another federal grant concurrently with the ECA-funded ARISC Collaborative Heritage Management Fellowship.

ARISC reserves the right to adjust the amounts and types of awards given under this program, as well as the general terms and conditions, before award agreements are reached with each recipient.

Fellows are responsible for securing their visas. ARISC Resident Directors can help facilitate the visa process.

ARISC does not provide tax advice on fellowship payments. Fellowship stipends are not considered income in the US. Fellows are encouraged to consult with their own tax advisors prior to filing.

Application Review:

Proposals will be evaluated by ARISC’s fellowships panel according to the following four primary criteria:

  • Contribution to the preservation of Azerbaijan’s or Georgia’s heritage
  • Promotion of local skills in current techniques of heritage management and curation
  • Development of substantive collaborative ties
  • Advancement of public understanding

Notifications of awards will be sent out by the end of March 2022.

If you would like to receive any updates to this funding call, please email with your name, contact information, and the subject “Updates to CHM Fellowships Azerbaijan, Georgia 2021-22.”

Funding for this fellowship is provided by the US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) through a grant to the Council of American Overseas Research Centers (CAORC).

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.