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Funding is provided by the US Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

This fellowship is now closed and the next call for applications will be in August 2024.

The Multi-Country Research Fellowship enables US scholars to carry out trans-regional and comparative research in countries across the network of Overseas Research Centers as well as other countries. 

The fellowship supports advanced research in the humanities, social sciences, and allied natural sciences for US doctoral candidates, who are ‘all but dissertation,’ and scholars who have earned their PhD or a terminal degree. Preference will be given to candidates examining comparative and/or cross-regional research. Applicants are eligible to apply as individuals or as teams. Twelve awards of $12,600 each will be granted. Funding is provided by the US Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.


Important information about the fellowship competition:

  • Scholars must carry out research in two or more countries outside the United States, at least one of which must host a participating Overseas Research Center (ORC). Click here for a list of the centers.

  • The award is for a minimum of 90 days and fellows may travel and carry out research between the period of May 2024 and November 2025. The 90-day travel minimum can be split into multiple trips and does not need to be consecutive.

  • Fellows must work on their research full-time while they are traveling on the fellowship.

  • Twelve awards of $12,600 each will be granted. The award payment is in the form of a stipend.

Information on travel:

  • Travel advisories may fluctuate in some countries, which CAORC continually monitors. CAORC abides by all US Department of State travel restrictions. Note that in accordance with US Department of State travel warnings, travel is not currently possible to the following countries with Overseas Research Centers: Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Myanmar (Burma), Pakistan (senior scholars may be permitted to travel to Lahore and Islamabad subject to approval), and Yemen.

  • Please list a tentative travel plan and dates in your application. CAORC will work with fellows to confirm travel plans when the fellowships are awarded.

Notification of fellowship status will be made available to each applicant via email on March 29, 2024. Fellows are advised that it can take up to six months to obtain necessary research clearances and should plan accordingly.


  • Applicants must be US citizens.

  • Funding is not available for research conducted in the US.

  • Team projects are admissible and will be evaluated as a single application. Teams should submit one (1) application for the team project and a CV for each member. Note that all team members must fulfill the fellowship eligibility requirements. If awarded, a single grant of $12,600 will be issued to the team.

  • Independent scholars are eligible to apply.

  • PhD candidates must be 'all but dissertation' (ABD) by May 2024.

  • If you have held a Multi-Country Fellowship in the past, you must wait three years before you are eligible to apply again. 

  • It is permissible to apply for both the Multi-Country Research Fellowship and the CAORC-NEH Research Fellowship at the same time, but only one fellowship can be awarded to an applicant.

  • Minority scholars and scholars from Minority-Serving Institutions are especially encouraged to apply. 

Application Information:

Applications can be accessed via You must sign up for an account to access the application. This will allow you to save and return to your application before submitting. Please save your login/password information for future applications.


Project Description: In 1500 words or less (footnotes do not count as part of the word count), please describe the nature of your proposed project and your competence to carry out the required research. State your research question and the methods and procedures you will use to conduct your research. Be sure to describe the proposed methodology in clear terms. Describe the broad value and scholarly significance of the research you plan to do and the expected publication, outputs, or dissemination that will result from your research. Give the reasons why your project requires your presence in the countries indicated, and note the facilities (e.g. libraries, museums, archives, field sites) that you plan to use while conducting your research. What relationship will you have with the host-country overseas research center(s)? Finally, indicate the extent to which you have investigated other funding sources. Please note that those judging your application may not be specialists in your field.  


Project Bibliography/Literature Review: You must submit a one-page bibliography or literature review outlining your project resources. CAORC does not have a preference for one format over another. Please clarify primary and secondary sources, and – where applicable – locations of listed material. Please note that additional pages will not be submitted to the review committee.


Letter of Recommendation: This fellowship requires one (1) letter of recommendation. You will be able to send a link to your recommender via the online grant portal, SM Apply, by entering their contact details, which will trigger the system into sending an automated email. Your recommender will then be able to upload a letter. All letters must be in English. Recommendation letters will be confidential in the system.


It is advisable to enter your recommender's contact details into the recommendation letter section of the application as soon as possible (and click 'mark as complete') so that they have sufficient time to complete and upload their letter. Note that the applicant is responsible for checking in with their recommender to ensure the letter is submitted by the recommender deadline (December 13 at 5:00pm ET).


Curriculum Vitae: Three (3) pages maximum. Additional pages will not be submitted to the review committee. Please ensure that prior awards and language capacity are clearly noted.


Transcripts: PhD candidates only. Please submit transcripts from your most recent institution.

Evaluation criteria:

A multidisciplinary review committee will evaluate applications based on the following criteria below.

  • Contribution to the applicant's field of research

  • Feasibility of the research design

  • Applicant’s qualifications in terms of having the requisite experience and skills to complete the project

  • Rationale for carrying out the project in the proposed host country(ies) and affiliating with the ORC(s) / Contribution to the intellectual scope of the ORC(s)

Link to the Application Form:

Application Deadline: December 6, 2023 at 5:00pm ET (applicants are advised to submit applications well before the deadline in case applicants have questions).

Recommendation Letter Deadline: December 13, 2023 at 5:00pm ET

Notification of Award Decisions: Late March, 2024

If you have questions, please email

Mary Ellen Lane Travel Award:

Mary Ellen Lane Travel Award: each year the highest ranking Multi-Country Fellowship applicant will receive an additional $1,000 toward travel expenses. The award is named after CAORC's founding director, Dr. Mary Ellen Lane.

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