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Awards and Fellowships

HRI Faculty Small Research Grants

2018 Faculty Research Grant Competition

The Human Rights Institute announces the Human Rights Research Grant Competition for the Faculty and Staff at the University of Connecticut. The objective of the competition is to support and promote research projects on human rights related questions.

Faculty and Staff Research & Book Preparation.

The funding competition is open to all faculty and staff in all disciplines at Storrs and the regional campuses.

Evaluation Criteria for Faculty Human Rights Research Grant Applications

1. Overall excellence of the proposed research project on human rights issues, understood broadly. Projects should make a significant contribution to ongoing scholarly and policy debates in the field of human rights.

2. Research awards will prioritize primary research, including library research, fieldwork, interviewing, historical archival research, pilot studies, data collection and data set construction, etc.

3. Requests for funding for conference travel and seminar/course tuition will be considered.

4. Book preparation requests could include copy editing, indexing, editorial assistance, etc. However, requests for subventions will not be considered.

Application format

Faculty Research Grant applications should be a maximum of three pages; written materials should be double spaced and printed in 12-point, Times New Roman font with 1 inch standard margins.

Each application of a maximum of three pages should include the intellectual rationale for the project, a list of expected project outcomes, a methodology section, and a budget narrative of research-related expenses. Ordinarily, budget requests should not exceed $2000. In addition, please provide a copy of your most up-to-date CV.

All applications should be submitted electronically via UConntact at

Deadline for the Application is March 2, 2018
2017 Faculty Research Grant Awardees:

Alaina Brenick, Assistant Professor, Human Development and Family Studies
“Evaluations of school-based rights violations of transgender and gender non-conforming youth: A social ecological perspective”

Audrey R. Chapman, Healey Professor of Medical Ethics and Humanities, Department of Community Medicine and Health Care, UConn Health
“Impact of Privatization on the Right to Health in Sri Lanka”

Debanuj DasGupta, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography & Women’s, Gender, Sexuality Studies
“The Politics of Transgender Detention”

Barbara Gurr, Associate Professor In Residence, Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies
“Mni Wiconi: The Meaning of “Rights” at Standing Rock”

Mark Overmyer-Velazquez, Associate Professor, Department of History
“Hauntings and Human Rights: Immigration in Post-Pinochet Chile”

Visit our blog for a full description of awardees research projects

Audrey R. Chapman, “The Challenges of Implementing a Human Rights Approach to Health”
Manisha Desai, “From Mathura to Nirbhaya: Mapping the Changing Dynamics of Activism Opposing Violence Against Women in India”
Sarah Willen, “When the U.S. Government calls Health a Human Right: Responses to the CDC Museum’s ‘Health is a Human Right’ Exhibition”
Elizabeth Holzer, “Compassion for Rebels”

Gary Levvis/Human Trafficking Service Provider Assessment Project (HTSPAP)
“Human Trafficking Service Provider Assessment Project (HTSPAP) Committee”
The aim of this project is to address the limited monitoring and evaluation mechanisms that currently exist for non‐governmental organizations in Connecticut. The goal of this project was to prevent the re‐victimization of persons at the hands of ineffective or disreputable caregivers by providing legitimate organizations with feedback concerning their practices.
Lyle Scruggs, Political Science
“Generosity of state unemployment insurance systems in the United States”
The main research question posed in this project is whether policy changes in the generosity of federal and state unemployment insurance benefits—specifically the absolute level of benefit, the amount of income such benefits replace, and the duration of these benefits—affect various public health outcomes. This possibility was suggested but not examined in previous work on inequality and health. An essential element of the project is collecting information on programmatic differences in unemployment insurance systems in the United States.
Nathaniel Trumbull, Geography
“Post-Socialist Cities and their Discontents: from Urban Disenfranchisement to Human Rights Violations”
This book project examines urban disenfranchisement and human rights violations in the post-socialist city of St. Petersburg (former Leningrad), Russia. I investigate the attempts by representatives of civil society to assemble and organize, the accompanying public demonstrations and frequent imprisonment related to those efforts, police repression and brutality, a legal system whose decisions are widely viewed to be politically motivated, ongoing official obstruction to appointing an independent city ombudsman, and most recently, public reaction to widespread election fraud, in the wake of which the largest numbers of arrests of public protesters in the past two decades in the city have taken place.
Gary English, Drama
“Theatre and Human Rights: The Arab/Israeli Conflict”
This project studied the uses of theater production as public discourse within the occupied territories (West Bank and Gaza Strip) of Palestine and the State of Israel over the past 10 years, or from the so-called 2nd Intifada up till now. Through an oral history methodology and interviews across various aspects of Palestinian society, this proposed research will continue to inform my grasp of contemporary theatre aesthetics and practice in Palestine and will deepen my understanding of how public discourse and questions of human rights have been dealt with in Palestinian theatre.
Charles B. Lansing, History
“German Nazi Hunters: The Central Agency and Germany’s Belated Search for Justice.”
The grant was used to fund research for the book project German Nazi Hunters: The Central Agency and Germany’s Belated Search for Justice. The book explores both the role of the West German state in the transformation of popular German attitudes regarding German complicity in the Holocaust and also the relationship between this process and the larger social and political democratization of Germany.
Samuel Martinez, Anthropology
“Onion of Oppression Manuscript Translation and Review”
University of Connecticut Human Rights Institute funds were applied to the revision and translation of a book manuscript, tentatively titled The Onion of Oppression: Complex Injustices and the Rights Struggles of Haitian-Ancestry Dominicans. The book applies the critical feminist theory of intersectionality to the domain of human rights, through description and analysis of various, interrelated limits to freedom encountered by Haitian nationals and Haitian descendants in the Dominican Republic.
Faculty Research Funding
Lanse Minkler & Samson Kimenyi, Economics
Constitutionalization of Human RightsTricia Gabany-Guerrero, International Affairs
An Anatomy of Mexican Repatriation: Human Rights and Boarderlands of ComplicityEmma Gilligan, History
Defending Human Rights in the 20th Century
Emma Gilligan, History
“War Crimes in Chechnya”Kathryn Libal, Women Studies
“Politics of Educating Girls in Turkey”Maya Beasley, Sociology
“South Africa Contemporary Race Relations”
Francoise Dussart, Anthropology and Women’s Studies
“Living with Chronic Illness in Aboriginal Australia: Engendered Health Practices, Beliefs and Aspirations at Yuenduma, Northern Territory”
Mary Crawford, Psychology
“Developing and Evaluating Interventions to Reduce Trafficking of
Girls and Women in Nepal”Lawrence B. Goodheart, History
“A Profile of Capital Punishment in Connecticut, 1636-2004”
Michelle Kaufman, Ph.D. Candidate, Psychology
“Voluntary and Involuntary Sex Trafficking in Nepal: An Investigation
into Human and Cultural Rights”Marita McComiskey, Women’s Studies
Conference 2005 on “The Responsibility of the Present Generations
for the Protection of Women’s Human Rights”Samuel Martinez, Anthropology
“Anthropology’s Human Rights Archive: A Preliminary Assessment
of the Documents of the AAA Committee for Human Rights”Professor Nancy A. Naples, Sociology and Women’s Studies
“Sexual Citizenship and Human Rights: A Comparative Study of
Immigration Policies in Different National Contexts”Olu Oguibe, Art and Art History
“A Decade of Freedom: Art after Apartheid 1994-2004”