The Weiser Center for Emerging Democracies at the University of Michigan (WCED) offers Weiser Emerging Democracies Fellowships for Incoming Graduate Students. These fellowships will be awarded to incoming graduate students at the University of Michigan who expect to focus their graduate work on both the conditions under which democracies emerge—and autocracies endure. Through its work on transformations of authoritarian regimes and dictatorships into more open societies, WCED will support the study of past, ongoing, and future efforts to assure and extend freedom and democracy.
This focus on emerging democracies is understood broadly. For example, it might refer to the historical development of democratic (or conversely, autocratic) rule; the impact of culture, literature, institutions, or the economy on democratic governance; or the role of the public sphere and civil society on democratic transition, consolidation, or breakdown.
Working with departments and schools, WCED will help recruit students to the University of Michigan and the study of emerging democracies. We encourage all units to collaborate with us in developing research in this area within scholarly disciplines, and across the university, by nominating their best prospective students in this area of scholarship. The fellowships are intended to directly recruit excellent individual students—they cannot be used to supplement the pool of departmental graduate funding or subsidize other graduate candidates.
Fellowship awards are in the amount of $15,000 for the academic year; the number of fellowships awarded is contingent on the availability of funds. Preference is given for graduate students in doctoral programs, and students in multi-year master's or professional degree programs. Departments/schools can nominate up to five incoming graduate students for the fellowship.
We expect Weiser Emerging Democracies Fellows to participate in the various lectures and conferences of the Center, and to join the Emerging Democracies Graduate Workshop. Upon successful completion of this workshop, up to an additional $3,000 will be added to awardees’ accounts to support their research on emerging democracies.
Deadline: February 15
Nomination Requirements: Nominating departments/schools must submit our online nomination form. The nomination form requires:
- PDF upload of all application materials submitted for consideration of admission; and
- A statement of support from the department chair and/or faculty advisor.