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Modern Indian Studies Faculty Research Award

The Modern Indian Studies (MIS) Initiative of UNC is delighted to offer a research award to support faculty working on Modern India.

MIS is a platform to support research and a variety of activities related to contemporary India and the transformations underway there, including diaspora relations within the US and in other geographies. 

MIS was established in 2018-19 with funds from the University of North Carolina and the Indian American Community to serve as a platform to bring together activities, research, courses and engaged scholarship and outreach related to understandings of contemporary India. The goal is to provide students, faculty and the community with a deeper engagement with contemporary  India in all its various dimensions.

The MIS Faculty Research Award is intended to further research on contemporary India, broadly conceived. The award is open to tenure track and fixed term faculty of any rank that have completed at least one year at UNC. Applicants may request up to $3,000 per award. MIS encourages applications on diverse topics and fields (ranging from science to business to the social sciences, education, health and the humanities)  and especially invites creative ideas and research projects.  The funds can be used to support research travel and  living expenses; they can be used to access images and rare library manuscripts to support applied research, to conduct community engaged work or to support publication subvention.

Awards are made biennially. Applications are due in January in odd-numbered years. A committee will review applications and the awards will be announced in March.


Applicants must be current faculty at UNC Chapel Hill. The award is open to tenure-track or fixed-term faculty of any rank who have completed at least one year at UNC.

Faculty members who have won this research award in the last two rounds are ineligible to reapply.

Application format

Applications are due in January in odd-numbered years.

Applicants must submit the following information through the Carolina Asia Center’s online portal.

  • A current CV
  • A two-page description of the proposed research to be supported, with at least six bibliographic references. Please address how the research builds on your previous work and furthers applied insights or theoretical inquiry in or on Modern India. New ideas that represent fresh inquiry or first time research on India are also welcome. Please include any institutional affiliations or collaborations in the site of field work that will support or facilitate your work.
  • A one-page budget detailing planned expenditures on the award
  • A one-page timeline of the activities to be undertaken


Recipients of the award will be expected to serve on the MIS award committee for student and faculty awards from MIS for two rounds of the awards. This involves the review of one MIS Graduate Student Conference Travel Award, one MIS Undergraduate Essay Award, and one MIS Faculty Research Award in each two-year round. Recipients will also collaborate with MIS to present their research to the UNC community at an event organized in collaboration with MIS and their home departments during the academic year following receipt of the award. 

Upon completion of the research award expenditures, the awardee should submit a report to the Associate Director of the Carolina Asia Center.


The essays will be judged by the Modern Indian Studies Initiative Award Committee. Awards will be announced in March following applications.


The next deadline to apply for these funds is January 20, 2025. Applications can be submitted through the Carolina Asia Center website by clicking this link.


Questions or problems? Contact Dr. Kevin Fogg, Associate Director of the Carolina Asia Center, at

Past Winners

2023 – Dr. Townsend Middleton, Associate Professor of Anthropology, to support open access of his book project, “Quinine’s Remains: Empire, Industry, and the Life-Thereafter” (University of California Press, 2024)