Home » Arts, Design, and Humanities Chair

Arts, Design, and Humanities Chair

Information about the Imagine Fund Grant Program for the current 2021-22 academic year will be forthcoming. Please check the website for updates.

The provost has established two University Imagine Fund chairs, each a two-year award during which the recipient becomes a Chair of Arts, Design, and Humanities. During each two-year term, the faculty awardee receives up to $100,000 to work with a group of faculty, staff, students, and other collaborators to create a program of activities for the University community and the community at large. The goal of these projects is to incite cross-departmental, multi-campus, and collaborative work.

The chair position supports an emergent process that includes a generative first year and a second year of visible public activities that engage the campus and local communities. When chairs are awarded in successive years, the dual chairs and their staggered terms will establish a rhythm of one chair beginning its generative phase while the other culminates with significant public engagement activity.

Applicants for the chair role must be tenured or tenure-track faculty in the University of Minnesota system. Eligibility does not include: visiting faculty, students pursuing a Ph.D., non-salaried faculty appointment type W, or employees with T appointments or A appointments.

The chair can either assemble collaborators, or groups can come together and name a chair from among the collaborators. The outcome of these activities should galvanize sustained intellectual dialogue around a particular academic theme. The program of activities can include: workshops, symposia, reading groups, speaker events, public engagement actions, partnerships across and outside the university, graduate and undergraduate classes, exhibitions, lectures, and performances.

Application review will begin in mid January, and the new chair—whose term will run from September to August —will be announced by late February. Please include the following materials as part of the application process:

  • Cover page stating the purpose of the project(s) and how it will incite cross-departmental, multi-campus, and collaborative work. The committee encourages applicants to demonstrate success in working collaboratively with others, to build on existing work, or begin new work that will benefit from a highly collaborative process.

  • Named Lead person (named chair): salary/stipend of $5000 per year to be accounted for in the $100,000 budget

    • This lead person must be a faculty member (tenured, or tenure-track) from the arts, humanities and/or design fields.

    • Named collaborators/fellows (they may be drawn from large range of disciplines)

    • Two leads may alternate years as named chair

  • Curriculum vitae for lead person/s

  • Scope and schedule of project(s)

  • Budget including potential course-release disbursement.

  • Signature of the department chair, indicating support for the applicant to assume the Arts, Design, and Humanities Chair role and carry out the proposed project(s)

  • Images, maps, information graphics, and other visual items are highly encouraged as supporting material for the full application.

Note: Projects that are collaborative, interdisciplinary, engage the community broadly, and take place across campuses will receive the highest ratings.

Direct questions to: Erin Slattengren, Provost’s Office

Funding parameters for the chair position

All applicants will be asked to complete a budget template. The details of the budget will be reviewed with the awardee. While there may be flexibility with allocations, the following serves as a guide to the distribution of the $100,000 budget.

  • Discretionary Funding (for chair): for advancing project ($15,000-$25,000 per year). These funds can be used for any program activity support such as: venue fees, hosting expenses, refreshments, marketing support, etc.

  • Course release(s) may be included as expenses: Not more than 8 course releases (depending on budget/availability) should be decided and distributed among team members (lead/chair and collaborating team members) at the discretion of the chair. These team members must be UMN faculty, and the majority must be from arts, humanities, and design fields. Distribution of these course releases should adhere to the following guidelines:

  1. The chair may receive a maximum of 4 course releases over the 2-year period (1 per semester)

  2. Supporting team members can also receive 1 release per semester. These releases may be interdisciplinary, with team members coming from more than one department

  3. Course releases should be distributed, when possible, in a manner that strives to include system campuses

  4. There will be no more than 1 course release per person per semester

  5. These course releases must be accounted for in the $100,000 budget and approved in conjunction with department chairs.

  • Non-UMN Collaborators (team members/speakers/artists/participants): Additional funding for honoraria, hotel/rental fees, airfare, etc. ($15,000-$25,000 per year)

  • Marketing Support: Coordination with University Relations and use of promotional, graphic design, production services ($5,000)

  • Product Support: These funds will support the production of some concrete outcome from the 2-year project—publication, website, blog, piece of art, etc.—and can be used for graduate student salary, graphic design, print, web support, etc. ($10,000-$15,000)

  • Departmental Support: Although it is expected that departments will provide some in-kind support, there will be some reimbursement from the grant to departments for the time/work of administrative support ($2,000).

Key Dates

Updated information about the Imagine Fund Grant program for the 2021-22 academic year will be posted in October 2021.
Please check the website for information in the coming months.