Chao Center for Asian Studies Funding

Proposal timeline for Academic Years:

  • Applications for funds to be expended in Spring semester must be received by September 30
  • Applications for funds to be expended in Fall semester must be received by February 28
  • Applications for funds to be expended in Summer must be received by April 30
  • Applicants will be notified within 3 weeks of each closing

Fund information:

Fund applications are open to all disciplines, as far as the project concerns transnational Asian studies and/or provides a future basis for a cross-border, comparative, and trans-cultural research on, of, and about Asia.
The maximum amount the Center grants is $1,000. A broad range of proposals may qualify for funding. Typically these include, but are not limited to:

  • Travel for a conference to present a paper (an invitation must be included as part of the application)
  • A research trip and/or fieldwork
  • The purchase of research- or teaching-related materials
  • A book subvention and/or indexing expenses
  • Inviting a guest lecturer
  • Co-sponsoring a small workshop or other such event.

The Chao Center asks all applicants to acknowledge the Chao Family Foundation funding support in the event a project outcome has been generated.


All full-time faculty, postdoctoral and research fellows, lecturers, and other academic personnel are eligible to apply. Part-time academic personnel may be considered. Address preliminary inquiries to the Center before applying.

Review process:

The Chao Center Executive Committee will make the final decision on all grant applications. The Executive Committee consists of nine members of Asian Studies faculty. The Committee will prioritize project applications that are in line with the Chao Center's mission of exploring Asia from transnational perspective, producing research outcomes that have both intellectual merit and public impact (see below for selection criteria).

Selection criteria:

In its deliberations, the Executive Committee will consider the intellectual merit and feasibility of each proposal, as well as other factors such as its public impact and/or its contribution to the Chao Center’s mission—especially with respect to our mission of developing innovative teaching and research on transnational Asia and building national and global collaborations as well as strong community outreach. The applicant must demonstrate that the Center’s funding will play a key role in the project and clearly state what outcomes are expected. A realistic estimate of time and expenditures is also an important criterion, as is evidence that the applicant has sought or is seeking other sources of funding. Co-funded proposals will be viewed with particular favor.

As a general rule, the greater the amount of funding available to the applicant, the smaller the Chao Center grant. This would mean that, all else being equal, junior faculty and researchers will be eligible for comparatively larger amounts than senior faculty.

The amount of each grant will vary, depending on the nature of the request and other variables, including the applicant’s rank, the availability of other sources of funding, etc.
No grants are given to one individual in consecutive terms, unless there is a compelling reason to do so.

How to apply:

Applicants are encouraged to make a preliminary inquiry to the Center at All requests must include a detailed description (one or two pages) and an executive summary (one or two paragraphs) of the project, likely outcome/product/result of the project, detailed budget including sources of other funding, and timeframe of execution. Applications are submitted using this webform. Additionally, a letter of endorsement from the applicant's departmental chair or director must accompany the application. It is the applicant's responsibility to request that the departmental chair or director submit the letter directly via email to as the system does not generate a request on the applicant's behalf. Please note that the Center requires all recipients to submit a brief report upon completion of the project.