Proposal Development Summer Institute

The Russell Sage Foundation (RSF) and the Economic Mobility and Opportunity program at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) sponsor the Proposal Development Summer Institute (PDSI).

The institute brings together about 25 early career social science faculty interested in workshopping and developing research ideas into grant proposals. The organizers and principal faculty are Michael Jones-Correa (University of Pennsylvania), Lorrie Frasure (University of California Los Angeles), and Mignon Moore (Barnard and Columbia University). The institute seeks to promote diversity in the social sciences broadly, including racial, ethnic, gender, disciplinary, institutional, and geographic diversity.

The PDSI is be designed to help develop participants' research ideas into a completed funding proposal for future RSF (and/or other potential funders’) application deadlines. The program will involve lectures, meeting with program officers from a range of foundations, writing time, group work, peer review, panel discussions, one-on-one consultations, and networking opportunities. It will address both the technical and soft skills necessary for navigating the research development and grant application processes, including overviews of research methods and data sources, research ethics, proposal/grant writing tips, navigating university bureaucracy, peer review, publishing, and more. There will also be outside speakers who conduct social science research with a variety of methods and data and have experience applying for grants and getting their worked published. There will be ample opportunities for students to discuss their ideas and research with the organizers, other participants, and visiting speakers.

We welcome applicants from all backgrounds and fields of study, especially applicants from groups currently under-represented in the social sciences. We will evaluate applicants along a number of dimensions: 1) career stage, 2) likelihood to benefit from participation, 3) likelihood to contribute to the educational experience of other participants, and 4) project relevance to RSF program areas.

Participation is restricted to tenure-track faculty within 7 years of their PhD who have not previously received support from RSF in the form of a Trustee or Presidential research grant or a visiting fellowship.

How to Apply
Applications must be submitted via the RSF online application portal, Fluxx.
1. Create an account or log in to your existing account. **Allow up to 48 hours for a new account to be approved**
2. Start a new "Summer Institute" application and select “Proposal Development Summer Institute.”
3. Submit the following documents:
(i) a curriculum vitae
(ii) a statement (maximum three pages) describing a research project you wish to further develop (including how it relates to RSF research priorities such as behavioral economics, social/political/economic inequality, the future of work, and race/ethnicity/immigration)

All application materials must be submitted by the deadline. Organizers will notify applicants in mid-March and will ask selected applicants to confirm their participation shortly thereafter.

Inquiries can be sent to RSF Program Officer Stephen Glauser at
Technical questions about the application portal (Fluxx) can be sent to


RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences is a peer-reviewed, open-access journal of original empirical research articles by both established and emerging scholars.


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