Hayek Fund Application Process

The Hayek Fund for Scholars supports students and faculty who are researching and teaching ideas within the classical liberal tradition inside the bounds of the social sciences and humanities by funding a wide range of research and career-advancing activities. From paying for PhD application fees to conference presentation travel to the purchase of crucial data sets, this unique fund helps cover an extensive array of expenses.

All scholars presently engaged in research or teaching within the social sciences or humanities at an accredited college or university can apply for funding. The ideal candidate is eager to pursue or continue a career in academia and contribute to the classical liberal intellectual tradition through their scholarship.

Awarded on a rolling basis, the Hayek Fund for Scholars helps pay for activities including (but not limited to):

  • Expenses related to remote/online teaching and scholarly collaboration incurred as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Purchase of books or online resources to support teaching and research
  • Travel for paper presentations or job interviews at academic conferences*
  • Submission fees for unpublished manuscripts and academic journal articles
  • Travel for archival research*
  • Purchase of data sets
  • Participation in seminars or peer reviews*
  • Collaborative research projects or the hiring of a research assistant
  • Facilitation of thought-provoking reading groups and book clubs with students
  • Reimbursement of application fees for PhD programs

Scholars are welcome to submit applications for other expenses not mentioned here. We cannot subsidize research stipends, time buy-outs, or living expenses. If you are interested in that support, please see our Humane Studies Fellowship or Sabbatical Research Fellowship.

As part of its Discourse Initiative, IHS is particularly interested in supporting research or programs in the following general categories:

  1. Liberalism and Its Critics, including engagement with and response to critiques from both ends of the ideological spectrum.
  2. Key Challenges within a Free Society, such as tensions between liberty and equality, dynamism and disruption, and freedom of speech and social cohesion.
  3. Cultural Challenges within Liberal Society, such as protections for minority rights, the pace of change in an increasingly digital and globalized world, and the cultural requirements of a tolerant and pluralistic society.
  4. Contentious Topics within the Liberal Tradition, including negative vs. positive rights, moral obligations within the liberal order, and contested meanings of liberal principles such as justice, equality, and democracy.
  5. Liberalism in Times of Crisis, including the proper role of government in a crisis and how to balance competing goals, such as public health and safety, with civil liberties, the rule of law, and economic freedom in an emergency. 

IHS welcomes applications and proposals on these or other related topics from scholars in all disciplines, including economics, history, political science, philosophy, PPE, law, literature, business, sociology, psychology, and the visual and performing arts. Scholars can visit the pages listed above for more information and to apply directly to their program(s) of interest.

The application process is open to any student or faculty member at any accredited college or university, regardless of nationality. However, applicants from the social sciences and humanities will be given preference, and applicants working within the hard sciences are generally not accepted. You must submit your application online at least four weeks prior to the start of your activity to allow the review committee ample time to consider your application. We do not award funding retroactively.

Your completed application must include the following:

  1. Completed online application form (see below)
  2. CV or resume
  3. Proposed budget
  4. Essay of 300 words or less describing your proposed project or activity and how it will advance your career
  5. Essay of 300 words or less explaining how the proposed project or activity will advance the discussion or study of classical liberal ideas
  6. Additional documentation, such as a relevant paper or dissertation to supplement the application, are not required but can be included in the application

Applicants will be notified of the committee’s decision within 3 to 4 weeks of submission. Awards will be distributed after the recipient presents appropriate documentation for their project.

If you have multiple projects, we encourage separate applications for each opportunity. A competitive application typically does not include more than one separate or unrelated project.

The maximum amount per single award from the Hayek Fund for Scholars is $5,000.