Stanford versus Brown

When comparing the Digital Humanities Advancement Grant and the Digital Projects for the Public grant I chose to look at two extremely well known colleges’ grant proposals, Brown University and Stanford University. Although in comparison the Stanford requested budget was huge, almost $300,000, I found the two very similar on a number of topics.

  1. A multidisciplinarian approach
  2. A clear timeline
  3. A clear sense of who was involved and their qualifications
  4. A clear sense of its relevance

The larger Stanford project, which sought to add a contextual basis for letters written by many great authors, covered not only a number of linguistics, but even a Digital Humanitarian Librarian. I had no idea such a thing even existed. The Brown grant, which was looking to expand a localized project on the four elements, included among its members anthropologists, historians and a local curator. Both projects used history as a way to open their abstracts to reference a broader humanities overtone.

The really impressive topic in both was the timeline they provided. Each proposal gave a timeline of when the project would be at certain milestone points as well as what this would mean for patrons. Whether seasonal or  actually dated, both projects made it clear when their work would be done as well as who would do what and when.

The most fascinating similarity was the qualifications of the people involved. Both schools had lists of awards and accomplishments for the professors and grad students that was phenomenal.

Lastly, both projects made a clear statement of what they believed to be missing in the world and how their projects would look to fix it.

Although the two projects were very different in the scope of what they intended, they both clearly showed relevancy to a number of groups of people, why the should be the ones doing it, and a realistic but ambitious timeline for their projects.


2 thoughts on “Stanford versus Brown”

  1. I felt like these narrative examples were a really good way to learn how to succinctly express the function of a project. So often the hardest part of a project is establishing what you want it to do–these grants clearly stated what the money would be used for and gave a good timeline for what needed to be done when. I am now far more confident that I could write a grant proposal than I was before looking at these examples!

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