Call for Fellows: Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society


The Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society invites applications for its 2017-18 cohort of postdoctoral and senior fellows. The RCC’s fellowship program is designed to bring together excellent scholars who are working in environmental history and related disciplines.

The center will award fellowships to scholars from a variety of countries and disciplines. Applicants’ research and writing should pertain to the central theme of the RCC—transformations in environment and society. Research at the RCC is concerned with questions of the interrelationship between environmental and social changes, and in particular the reasons—social, political, cultural, and environmental factors—for these transformations.

The RCC awards five types of fellowships:

  • Carson Writing Fellowships
  • Interdisciplinary Writing Fellowships
  • Outreach Fellowships
  • Short-term Fellowships
  • Alumni Fellowships

All fellows are expected to spend their fellowship in residence, to work on a major project, to attend the weekly lunchtime colloquium, and to present their project at the center. Please note that the RCC does not sponsor field trips or archival research for any of the fellowship types.

Carson Writing Fellowships
These fellowships are at the center of our fellowship program and are awarded to scholars aiming to complete several major articles or a book project in the environmental humanities. Scholars should apply for a residential fellowship of between 3 and 12 months.

Interdisciplinary Writing Fellowships
To promote cooperation across disciplinary boundaries, we invite applications for interdisciplinary writing fellowships. Scholars from the humanities are invited to apply jointly with scholars from the sciences or field practitioners with the purpose of authoring a collaborative project. These fellowships are only intended for writing.

Applicants for interdisciplinary writing fellowships must apply together from at least two separate institutions or organizations. It would be advantageous if one of these institutions is LMU Munich or another Munich-based organization. Please note that funding will only be awarded to the non-Munich partners. All members of the collaboration should plan to be in residence in Munich at the same time.

As a rule, scholars applying for interdisciplinary writing fellowships should aim for a residential fellowship of between 3 and 12 months, or a series of 3-month residencies. But we will also consider other models, for example short-term cooperations over a longer period of time.

Outreach Fellowships
Outreach fellowships are intended for candidates whose work promotes public engagement with the topic of transformations in environment and society. We invite applications from documentary filmmakers and writers in particular.

Short-term Fellowships
Short-term fellowships (1-8 weeks) are designed to encourage genuinely explorative partnerships and dialogue across disciplinary divides and between theory and practice. Scholars on short-term fellowships come to Munich to develop a specific project— for example, a joint publication, a workshop, or other collaborative research projects.

Alumni Fellowships
Former Carson fellows are not ordinarily eligible for a second residential fellowship at the RCC. However, the RCC’s alumni association, the Society of Fellows, in partnership with the RCC, offers alumni fellowships of 3-6 months. For more information on these fellowships, please visit the Society of Fellows section of the RCC website.

To Apply:
All successful applicants should plan to begin their fellowship between 1 September 2017 and 1 December 2018; it will not be possible to start a fellowship awarded in this round at a later date. Decisions about the fellowships will be announced in mid-May 2017. Fellowships will usually be granted for periods of 3, 6, 9, or 12 months. The RCC will pay for a teaching replacement of the successful candidate at his or her home institution; alternatively it will pay a stipend that is commensurate with experience and current employment and which also conforms to funding guidelines.

The deadline for applications is 31 January 2017. Applications must be made in our online portal. The application portal will be open from 1 January – 31 January 2017. It closes at midnight (Central European Time) on 31 January.

Candidates are welcome to apply for more than one type of fellowship. In such cases, the candidate should submit a new application for each fellowship type. If successful, the candidate will only be awarded one fellowship.

The application should discuss the RCC’s core research theme “transformations in environment and society” in their project description or the cover letter and should include the following:

  • Cover letter (750 words maximum)
  • Curriculum vitae (3 pages maximum)
  • Project description (1,000 words maximum)
  • Research schedule for the fellowship period (300 words maximum)
  • Names and contact information of three scholars as referees

Please note that in order to be eligible for all fellowships except the outreach fellowships, you must have completed your doctorate by the application deadline (31 January 2016). Scholars already based in the greater Munich area are not eligible.

You may write your application in either English or German; please use the language in which you are most proficient. You will be notified about the outcome of your application by mid-May 2017.

For more information:

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