CRASE Interdisciplinary Action Groups Grant Program

CALL FOR PROPOSALS: Academic Risk and Freedom in Dangerous Times

CRASE is committed to research, scholarship, and artistic efforts that directly investigate, address, and foster conversation and interventions about the range of personal, social, and political issues emerging from the increase of attacks on faculty academic freedom. As scholars, how do we negotiate our academic and equity-oriented identities and priorities in divided and often dangerous intellectual spaces? How do we make decisions about personal and professional censorship in our research, artwork, writing, public scholarship, and social media? Faculty research and creative works are facing new threatsespecially as they may push up against far left- or right-wing political views.

In this uncertain and contentious period of trolling, fake news, and organized attacks on faculty scholarship, how do we think about the role and significance of taking risks within this context to engage in controversial issues and navigate ideas about freedom of speech and power? How do we support and pursue our work with integrity and respect for collectively contributing to the greater good and for our future?


CRASE is seeking proposals from faculty Interdisciplinary Action Groups, which represent teams of full-time USF faculty across at least 2 colleges/schools and 3 departments. These groups collectivize to conduct innovative projects which address our theme, Academic Risk and Freedom in Dangerous Times.

Interdisciplinary Action Group teams propose a semester-long project with a specific, high-impact goal that provides new ideas, strategies, and possibilities to USF, key stakeholders, and to the public. For this call, we are especially interested in community events and forums that further unpack faculty experiences with violations of their academic freedom. Outcomes must contribute to the public debate concerning the theme and may include the following:

  • Preparing and disseminating a policy brief, position paper, or legal document
  • Publishing a blog, commentary, Op-Ed, or other piece of public scholarship
  • Giving a presentation, exhibition, workshop, or symposium to the community

Examples of previous grant awards can be found here:


Two to three grant awards of up to $3,000 will be awarded in the spring of 2019. Awards may be used to purchase tangible goods related to grant activities. While funds can be used for stipends and honoraria, they can only be paid to full-time faculty and may be taxed. Funds cannot be disbursed to students and non-full-time faculty at USF. Awards must be spent as indicated by the award letter otherwise the unspent portion will be returned to CRASE.


Submit a 4-5-page proposal, single spaced (not including cover page or citations) addressing the following:

  • Urgent issueSuccinctly describe the problem your topic seeks to address as it relates to the theme, Academic Risk and Freedom in Dangerous Times
  • Plans: Provide a detailed description of your plan for the project.
  • Timeline: Describe how your team will address this topic over the course of a semester.
  • Outcomes: What are your proposed outcomes (i.e. policy brief, book proposal, community presentation, etc)? How will these inform the public debate on your topic?
  • Team: Describe group members, noting individual contributions to your topic, departments, and schools/colleges/library do they represent? Provide brief bios of each member and a narrative of the overall team and why these different perspectives are important.
  • Budget: What is your budget and how do you propose to spend the money? Previous proposals have included honoraria for guest speakers, food for an event, art supplies, and faculty stipends.


Proposals will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Interdisciplinary nature of the team
  • Significance of the topic 
  • Clarity in articulation of the project and its connection to the theme Academic Risk and Freedom in Dangerous Times
  • Feasibility of the project to impact local, regional, and/or national communities
  • Meaningfulness of the proposed outcomes
  • Appropriateness of the budget


Deadline for submission is Friday March 1, 2019 at 5 p.m. to Proposals will be reviewed by a team of faculty from across the university. Announcements will be made March 14, 2019. Awards must be spent by May 15, 2019 and the deliverables (such as policy briefs or journal article) must be submitted by June 15, 2019. Winning teams are expected to submit a blog post (500-800 words) to be published on the CRASE blog summarizing the project due June 30, 2019. Faculty teams are also featured in the CRASE Academic Faculty Circles.


We strongly encourage emailing us your ideas, intent to apply, and potential dates, so that we may provide provisional feedback prior to submitting your final proposal. We can also assist in forming interdisciplinary groups.