The Ph.D. Program in History

at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York


February 23 The Graduate Center: Early Research Initiative


Located in the heart of Manhattan, the Graduate Center has long been a central hub for intellectual and scholarly conversations in New York City. Moreover, it has a long history of fostering and producing scholarly work focused on the city itself, knowledge which draws upon and contributes to the complex communities of New York City and beyond.

In the spirit of this history, the Early Research Initiative in collaboration with the GC Digital Initiatives invites applications for new research fellowships for Summer 2018. These $4,000 fellowships will be offered to Graduate Center Ph.D. students from any program conducting research on New York City and its environs (including, but not limited to: the city’s natural and artificial environments, its architectural landscapes, its infrastructure, city planning, city politics, its prominence as a global and economic hub, the city’s political, cultural, and social histories, its foodways, its flows of population, its communities, its ethnoscapes, soundscapes,  mediascapes, and ideoscapes, and its evolving urban ecosystems).

The primary responsibilities of the award winners will be to produce a dissertation proposal or dissertation chapter by September 2018; a condensed and public-facing version of this research will be showcased on the Provost’s website, as part of a new initiative in support of this theme.

In addition, fellowship recipients will work in collaboration with a team of social media and website developers to publish two 300-word blog posts over the summer about their progress on the work that they are undertaking (one due in mid-July and one in mid-August) and produce a final longer blog posting (and accompanying visual materials) about their work (aimed at a public audience) that will be due in mid-September. Additional opportunities for social media contributions are possible.

Successful proposals will clearly explain one or more of the following:

  • how your work advances knowledge about or for New York and surrounding areas
  • the significance of your work to your own field and to the public
  • how your work directly impacts the city
  • any innovative aspect of your research methodology or communication platform which might lend itself to public display (for example, data visualizations, websites, maps, or other forms of scholarly product beyond writing)
  • a brief account of how this project will further your progress in your program

To apply please send a detailed letter of interest (up to three pages) describing your project that addresses the above points, a c.v., a current Graduate Center transcript (students may submit the unofficial student copy that can be printed from Banner), and a letter of support from your primary advisor.


Instructions for submitting your application:

  • Please combine the above materials (except for the letter of recommendation) into a SINGLE file (either as a pdf document or a word document).

 Use the following format when naming your document: Last Name, First Name, Program

 Email your file directly to

Please use your graduate center email address when sending the file.

Instructions for Faculty Recommenders

  • Prepare your reference letter as a regular word or pdf document.
  • Please use the following format when naming your document:

Student Last Name, First Name


Application Deadline: Friday, February 23rd by 3pm

Questions about the program can be directed to