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NYBG Mellon Fellowship Program for Environmental Humanities


The Humanities Institute, a research division within the LuEsther T. Mertz Library at the New York Botanical Garden, is pleased to offer three full-time, residential Research Fellowships for 2020 at a large, international plant-based research center for current Ph.D. students or recent post-doctoral researchers. Candidates are invited to submit a proposal for independent research in topics related to the environmental humanities.

Fellows will conduct research that involves innovative interdisciplinary approaches to areas such as landscape and garden design; urban planning and social history; cultural anthropology; the history and philosophy of botany; botanical exploration, arts and illustration, with a primary focus on areas of inquiry that connect nature to the human experience. Specific collections at NYBG should also be taken into consideration as part of the research topic. Recipients will have access to the unique, historical collections of the LuEsther T. Mertz Library and Archives, the William and Lynda Steere Herbarium, and the Living Collections, including the 250-acre historic landscape. Recipients are also encouraged to take advantage of the cultural and educational resources of New York City.


Current Ph.D. candidates and recent post-doctoral researchers (no more than four years since graduation), who are U.S. citizens, or foreign scholars currently authorized to work in the U.S. Students from diverse backgrounds, ethnicities and underrepresented communities are encouraged to apply.

Tenure of Fellowship

Nine months (tenure can be activated from June 1, 2020 onward and no later than September 9, 2020). Deferral of this Research Fellowship is not permitted. Fellowships at NYBG’s Humanities Institute are full-time residential awards that place great emphasis on the exchange of ideas among fellows and the spirit of community within the larger institution. Fellows are expected to devote themselves fully to their studies, not take on any other major responsibilities during their tenure, and give a presentation about their own research. They also are requested to participate in the Humanities Institute’s activities, including symposia and colloquia, as well as important lectures held Garden-wide.

Fellowship award

$50,000 (fifty thousand US dollars), plus health benefits. Fellows are also eligible for a travel stipend during their tenure to conduct research directly related to their project (travel maximum three weeks).

How to apply

  • The application must be submitted as a single document —Microsoft Word or PDF file— to:
  • Letters of recommendation, in PDF file format, must be submitted directly from the recommender to the Director of the Humanities Institute, Vanessa Bezemer Sellers, at
  • All applications will receive an email acknowledgement of receipt. If you have further questions, please contact the Director of the Humanities Institute.

Applications should include:

  • Project proposal, consisting of a 2-3 page (max. 1000 words) statement that provides an overview of the project you plan to research with an explanation of its significance in the field and the manner in which it will contribute to new scholarship in the environmental humanities.
  • Complete curriculum vitae of education, professional experience, honors, awards, and publications.
  • Tentative schedule of work to be accomplished during the fellowship.
  • Copy of your Graduate transcripts (electronic copies will be accepted).
  • Three letters of recommendation (PDF) to be sent by the recommenders directly to

The Deadline for all application material, including transcripts and letters of recommendation, is Monday, January 6, 2020 at 5pm (EST). Applications are to be written in English and submitted electronically. Late applications will not be accepted. Awards will be announced in early March.

Upon acceptance of the fellowship, applicants will discuss their academic-year plan (a period of nine months)—including their schedule for residence in New York/New York Botanical Garden, and their specific contribution to the Humanities Institute and related institutional projects—with the Director of the Humanities Institute.

Housing: Fellows are responsible for their own housing arrangements, but suggestions will be provided.

Health Insurance for Fellows: A comprehensive Health Benefit package is offered in addition to the fellowship payment (details of coverage to be finalized in consultation with Human Resource Dept.).

Learn more about the Humanities Institute at

Date de candidature
9 mois
Amérique : États-Unis (Moyen-Atlantique)
Humanités : Anthropologie & Ethnologie, Architecture, Art et histoire de l'art, Humanités numériques, Histoire, Littérature, Etude des médias, Philosophie, Religion et théologie
Sciences sociales : Sciences environnementales, Géographie, Anthropologie sociale
Expérience post-doc requise:
Entre 0 et 4 ans
Grants available
Montant par bourse
US$ 50.000 + assurance maladie + frais de voyage