Phillips Fund for Native American Research

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The Phillips Fund of the American Philosophical Society provides grants for research in Native American linguistics, ethnohistory, and the history of studies of Native Americans, in the continental United States and Canada.

The grants are intended for such costs as travel, audio and video recordings, and consultants' fees. Grants are not made for projects in archaeology, ethnography, or psycholinguistics; for the purchase of permanent equipment; or for the preparation of pedagogical materials. The committee distinguishes ethnohistory from contemporary ethnography as the study of cultures and cultural change through time.

Deadline: March 1, 2024
Notification: May 2024

Apply online


The committee prefers to support the work of younger scholars who have received the doctorate. Applications are also accepted from graduate students for research on master’s theses or doctoral dissertations.

Applicants conducting research with Indigenous communities should provide information on appropriate contacts and the current state of consultation or arrangements made with those communities on any issues of research approval and ethical access that pertain to the proposed research. Details of preparations and plans will be requested within the application.

The committee sometimes approves two awards to the same person within a five-year period.

Award and Duration

The average award is about $3,000; grants do not exceed $3,500. Grants are given for one year following the date of the award. Grants are taxable income, but the Society is not required to report payments. It is recommended that grant recipients discuss their reporting obligations with their tax advisors. Grant funds are not to be used to pay income taxes.


Recipients of awards are expected to provide the American Philosophical Society with a brief formal report.  In addition, the American Philosophical Society Library requests physical or digital copies of any field notes, audio-visual recordings, transcriptions, analyses, or other original materials produced in the process of the grant-funded research for archiving among the Library's extensive research collections as part of the growing Phillips Fund for Native American Research Collection (Mss.497.3.Am4). Deposit and access conditions can be arranged as needed for archived materials, such as embargo periods, requirements for permission to access or use from the depositor or Indigenous community entities, retention of copyright, co-archiving with local or regional repositories, and other related options. Potential applicants are encouraged to contact the APS Center for Native American and Indigenous Research ahead of time with any questions about archiving and access parameters. Brian Carpenter, Curator of Indigenous Materials, may be reached at or 215-440-3418.


PNA 2023 sample application (143221 B)

Grant report instructions (197623 B)

Application date
Up to 1 year
Humanities : Anthropology & Ethnology, Arts and Art history, History, Linguistics, Philosophy, Theology and religion
Social sciences : Psychology & Cognitive Sciences, Sociology