Podcast Support Grant, 2021-2022

The 2021-22 UCHRI Podcast Support Grant is an 18-month award that supports UC faculty in developing podcasting skills and producing a public-facing podcast series on an issue of pressing contemporary concern. This new grant opportunity seeks to increase the capacity for podcast production in the UC humanities community, and to encourage the broader dissemination of the humanities to communities across and beyond the university. All topics relevant to the humanities are welcome, but UCHRI is particularly interested in supporting projects broadly related to Living Through Upheaval. This new research and public programming initiative, developed by UCHRI and the UC Humanities Collaborative, seeks to foster the systemwide engagement of humanities faculty and students around important and transformative issues related to moments of upheaval—past, present, and future.

A key component of the award involves attending an online podcasting workshop, organized by UCHRI and delivered by an outside expert. Two workshops will be scheduled near the start of the grant period in Fall 2021, and based upon participants’ interests and needs. Grant funds support reasonable expenses related to the production of a podcast, including: studio or equipment rental, electronic equipment purchases where applicable (any equipment must become the property of your UC campus at the end of the project), any relevant travel costs*, and advertising and dissemination of the podcast. Faculty applying for other grants (e.g. Engaging Humanities, Living Through Upheaval thematic grants), may choose to apply for this grant alongside their comprehensive collaborative projects. Preference will be given to podcast proposals that integrate graduate students and junior faculty alongside senior faculty in the development and production of the podcast series.

*The use of MRPI funds (including these grant funds) for travel is prohibited through the end of the 2021 calendar year. If your project plans include travel for events anytime before January 1, 2022, you should submit a budget that reflects a plan for online meetings ONLY. If you are planning research travel or in-person meetings from January 2022 onward, you may submit a budget that reflects this.

Applications must be submitted online via Submittable by 11:59 PM (Pacific time) on the deadline date.


Application Details

Organizers must be UC ladder rank faculty members and will be responsible for coordinating all aspects of the grant. Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact their respective campus representative on the UCHRI Advisory Committee for guidance in the application process. Prospective faculty organizers must apply online via Submittable.

Required documents include:

  • Project Title and Abstract (200 words max)

  • Project Description (2,000 words max, see details below)

  • Proposed Budget (see details below)

  • Curriculum Vitae of the Faculty Organizer(s) (2 pages max)

Interdisciplinary and multi-campus collaborations are strongly encouraged. Though proposed initiatives may involve scholars from a single or multiple UC campuses  (depending on the needs of the project), significant preference will be given to projects that involve at least two UC campuses. Podcast proposals should specify their target audiences, explain why the podcast will appeal to those audiences, and present a plan for outreach. Preference will be given to projects that engage with populations not traditionally well represented at the university.

The 18-month structure of this award is meant to allow applicants to incorporate research and development during the first six months of the project, if necessary, and to provide time for grantees to think creatively about how to structure collaborative research. Funded project activities should span at least 12 months in total.

All applicants are encouraged to familiarize themselves with UCHRI’s online journal, Foundry, and to consider submitting work pertaining to Foundry’s new open call series, Living Through Upheaval. Foundry seeks academic submissions that experiment with content and form, and that push beyond the constraints of traditional academic publishing.

Project Description

The project description should be a maximum of 2,000 words and include the following elements:

  • Problem Statement, including the important historical and theoretical context of the proposed topic, its short- and long-term significance to the humanities, and the faculty organizer’s personal commitment to the project.
  • Intellectual Agenda, including the relevance and importance of the project (if any) for the Living Through Upheaval theme.
  • Podcast Production Plan, including proposed development timeline, and any relevant milestones. The grant activities must take place between July 1, 2021 and December 31, 2022.
  • List of Participants, including each participant’s name, brief biography, and relevance/contribution to the collaborative project and its stated objectives. 
  • Proposed Objectives, including expected outcomes, how the project will potentially impact various communities, and how this impact will be evaluated or measured.

Proposed Budget

The proposed budget is made up of two elements:

Proposed budgets may cover travel, meals, and lodging expenses (in 2022 ONLY) related to podcast production, as well as equipment rentals, sound editing services, hiring outside consultants (such as sensitivity readers to evaluate podcast content), electronic equipment purchases excluding computers (any equipment purchased must become the property of UC at the end of the project), and advertising and dissemination of the podcast.

Minimal food costs will be permissible where appropriate, but should not exceed 10% of the total award amount. Grant funds do not cover alcoholic beverages. UCHRI may also consider administrative costs (up to 15% of the total requested amount), provided justification is detailed in both the budget template and the budget narrative. Amounts should be determined in advance and in writing with the administrative unit (e.g., the faculty organizer’s department or campus humanities center). Campuses are prohibited from charging indirect costs on funding from the Office of the President.

Please note that restrictions on UCHRI funding do not allow honoraria to be paid to UC faculty. Compensation should be in the form of a direct contribution to the faculty member’s research fund, and is limited to a maximum of $300 for UC-faculty presenters/panelists. Honoraria may be paid to non-UC presenters/panelists, and should also be capped at $300.


For program related questions, please contact Shana Melnysyn, research grants manager, at smelnysyn@hri.uci.edu. Please include the name of the grant for which you need assistance.

For technical assistance, contact Submittable at support@submittable.com.