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Mershon Center for International Security Studies

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Grants

The Mershon Center for International Security Studies welcomes applications for self-funded visiting researchers for a stay of up to a year. Visiting scholars must be working with a faculty member at Ohio State University on a theme related to international security and must be approved by a Mershon Center standing committee. We will accept up to two visiting scholars per year.

For those approved, we will provide office space, library access, computing privileges, some administrative assistance, as well as reimbursement of up to $2,000 for research and academic-related travel. We will also cover visa application costs, if required. Mershon visitors are expected to attend Mershon Center events, interact with other Mershon affiliated faculty, participate in the intellectual life of The Ohio State University, and present an informal seminar on their research during the early part of their visit.

Application Materials:

  • Description of the research to be conducted during the visit
  • Letter of support from an Ohio State faculty member
  • Writing sample
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Visa information (if required)

Submission Instructions:

All the above materials should be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Questions regarding the visiting scholars program at the Mershon Center for International Security Studies should be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Housing:

There are many housing options in the Columbus area, including a wide variety of rooms, apartments and homes offered from both commercial companies and local landlords. This document provides a few options to help you find a place close to campus, along with websites to explore a wide variety of other options. Please note that this list is not comprehensive and that the listed prices can fluctuate. Prices may or may not include utilities, furniture or more than one bedroom.

OSU Housing Suggestions

The Mershon Center for International Security Studies seeks applications from Ohio State graduate students for research projects related to international and national security. Funds for student grants may be used to support travel costs, food and lodging expenses, interview or library fees, survey costs, and other expenses related to research.  Students with dissertations under way are encouraged to apply.

Proposals will be evaluated by an interdisciplinary review committee of faculty who will make recommendations to the Mershon Center director. Past committees have included faculty from departments and colleges across campus, including Political Science, History, Sociology, Moritz College of Law, Glenn College of Public Affairs, and others.

Currently, the Mershon Center is interested in three main themes:

  • The use of force and diplomacy
  • The ideas, identities and decisional processes that affect security
  • The institutions that manage violent conflict

To learn about past graduate student projects funded by the Mershon Center, please see past issues of the Mershon Center Annual Report under Publications.

If you are an undergraduate student interested in financial support for undergraduate theses and study abroad, please see International Security Scholarships for Undergraduate Theses and Study Abroad.

Application Instructions

Student grant applications must include:

  • Standard cover sheet that includes 500-word abstract of the project. In a paragraph, explain to an interdisciplinary audience how your project will advance the understanding of international and national security, broadly defined.
  • Three- to five-page double-spaced proposal detailing the project or dissertation.  
  • Detailed, itemized budget. Proposals involving international travel must budget for each month of travel outside the United States to cover required supplemental health insurance.
  • Letter of recommendation from project advisor or dissertation committee chair.
  • Official copy of student's college transcript or advising report.

The 2018-2019 Graduate Student Research Grant application form can be found here. It will download as a fillable Microsoft Word document.

All application materials should be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please identify each electronic document with your last name and document type; for example, smithvita.doc or smithproposal.doc. Faculty recommendation letters may be sent separately.

Evaluation of Applications

The criteria used to judge proposals include:

  • The academic quality of the project.
  • The project's applicability to one or more of the Mershon Center's three main research themes.
  • The quality of the student's performance at Ohio State.
  • The likelihood that the project will fundamentally enhance a student’s academic experience or produce an academic product such as a master's thesis, doctoral dissertation, or publishable article.

The deadline for receiving student grant applications is 5 p.m. on Wednesday, February 28, 2018.

For more information or questions regarding the application process, please contact Steven Blalock, Program Coordinator at the Mershon Center, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Students with winning grant applications will be informed by March. Funds will be available for a full academic year. All awards are subject to the rules and regulations of The Ohio State University. 

Grant applicants who wish to travel to countries under a current Department of State Travel Warning or other locations designated high risk should contact Dru Simmons, international risk manager, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Office of Risk Management and Insurance. Countries currently on Department of State Travel Warning can be viewed at: www.travel.state.gov

Ohio State students traveling to international locations for the purpose of study abroad, graduate/dissertation research, internships or independent study are required to enroll in the university's supplemental international insurance which is provided through HTH Worldwide. The insurance includes coverage for medical, evacuation, repatriation, emergency assistance, and political security and natural disaster. Students participating in study abroad programming coordinated through the Office of International Affairs are automatically enrolled in the supplemental international insurance. Students who are traveling abroad independently may enroll online for the supplemental insurance. For instructions: http://oia.osu.edu/preparing-to-depart/health-insurance.html.

 

The Mershon Center for International Security Studies is requesting proposals from Ohio State faculty members for research projects related to international and national security.  Faculty projects may involve research and its related activities, including, among other things, generating and/or acquiring data, making trips to archives, hiring research assistants, conducting laboratory experiments, attending book conferences and gaining released time from teaching.  Junior faculty members are particularly encouraged to apply.

Although projects can vary greatly in form and substance, they will be evaluated by an interdisciplinary review committee of faculty who will make recommendations to the Mershon Center director.  Past committees have included faculty from departments across campus, including History, Political Science, Moritz College of Law, Sociology, and others.

Currently, the Mershon Center is interested in three main themes:

  • The use of force and diplomacy
  • The ideas, identities, and decisional processes that affect security
  • The institutions that manage violent conflict

To learn about faculty projects previously funded by the Mershon Center, please see the Research section of this website as well as past issues of the Mershon Center Annual Report. Mershon-supported conferences and speaker series are searchable in the Events section or the Mershon Center community of the Knowledge Bank.

Application Instructions

Faculty grant applications must include:

  • Standard cover sheet that includes 500-word abstract of the project. In one paragraph, explain to an interdisciplinary audience how your project will advance the understanding of international and national security, broadly defined.
  • Itemized budget
  • Four- to five-page single-spaced statement elaborating the purpose, method, anticipated products, and significance of the project. Please articulate which of the Mershon Center's main themes, listed above, your proposal seeks to address. 
  • Curriculum vitae for each principal investigator.

The 2018-19 Faculty Research and Seed Grant application form can be found here.  It will download as a PDF file.

All application materials should be sent as email attachments to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please identify each electronic document with your last name and document type; for example, smithvita.doc or smithproposal.doc

The deadline for receiving faculty grant applications is 5 p.m. on Wednesday, February 28, 2018.

Evaluation of Applications

The criteria for evaluating faculty grant applications are:

  • The academic quality of the project
  • The likelihood of generating additional external funds
  • The likelihood of resulting products that make an impact in academic and policy circles
  • The application to one or more of the Mershon Center’s three main research themes.

We are also interested in projects that emphasize the role of peace-building and development initiatives globally, in addition to projects that strengthen Ohio State's Global Gateways in Brazil, China and India. We will also consider projects that are related to campus area studies centers and research institutes, or a project that addresses one or more of the university's Discovery Themes, which include health and wellness, energy and the environment, and food production and security.

Interested faculty should contact Chris Gelpi, Director, Mershon Center for International Security Studies, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to discuss any questions or ideas about potential project proposals. 

Faculty Grant Awards

Faculty who receive awards will be expected to become an active member of the Mershon Center. Grant recipients should expect to house their projects at the center, or at a minimum attend various center functions throughout the year.

Proposals recommended for funding will receive informal notice by March or early April. Formal notice will come later, pending approval by the Mershon Center Oversight Committee. Funds will be available for a full academic year.

Each year, the Mershon Center for International Security Studies holds a competition for Ohio State University faculty and students to apply for grant funds to support research in international security.

Faculty research and seed grants and graduate student research grants may be used for a variety of research-related purposes including travel, seminars, conferences, interviews, experiments, surveys, library costs, and more. All faculty and graduate student applications will be judged in the same competition pool.

Applications must be for projects that relate to one or more of the Mershon Center's three areas of focus:
• The use of force and diplomacy.
• The ideas, identities and decisional processes that affect security.
• The institutions that manage violent conflict.

We are also interested in projects that emphasize the role of peace-building and development initiatives globally, in addition to projects that strengthen the global gateways in China, India and Brazil. We will consider projects that speak to the university’s Discovery Themes in health and wellness, energy and the environment, and food production and security as well.

For more information, please click on the links to the left.

The Mershon Center for International Security Studies has established International Security Study Scholarships for Undergraduate Theses and Study Abroad to support undergraduates whose professional training and career plans lie in the field of international security.

Applications will be evaluated by an interdisciplinary review committee that will make recommendations to the director of the Mershon Center. Scholarship amounts typically range from $2,000 to $3,000.

Evaluation of Applications

The criteria for evaluation of applications are:

  • The student's planned course of research or study abroad and its applicability to one or more of the Mershon Center's three main research themes.
  • The quality of the student's performance at Ohio State.
  • How the project or study abroad program fits into a student's major and career plans, and helps prepare the student for a career in international security, broadly defined.

For students studying abroad, preference will be given to applicants wishing to study a foreign language critical to U.S. national security, such as Arabic, Russian, Chinese, or Turkish. Find a complete list of critical languages.

Application Instructions

Applications for the International Security Scholarship must contain four parts:

  • Completed application form.
  • Statement of purpose: Explain to an interdisciplinary audience how your project will advance the understanding of international security, broadly defined.
  • Letter of recommendation from an Ohio State faculty member.
  • Copy of student's advising report.

The 2018-19 International Security Scholarships for Undergraduate Theses and Study Abroad application form can be found here. It will download as a fillable Microsoft Word document. 

All application materials should be sent as email attachments to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

For questions regarding the application process, please contact Steven Blalock, Program Coordinator at the Mershon Center, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Students are welcome to apply simultaneously to study abroad scholarships through the Office of International Affairs and to the International Security Scholarship. However, students who receive funding from the Office of International Affairs will not be considered for additional funding from the Mershon Center. Students are eligible to receive the International Security Scholarship in consecutive years.

The deadline for receiving study abroad applications is 5 p.m. on Wednesday, February 28, 2018.

In countries under a current Department of State Travel Warning or other locations designated high risk, undergraduate students cannot use scholarship awards for study abroad programs and/or individual international projects outside of venues approved by Ohio State. Approved programs are communicated on the OIA website via the study abroad search engine.

Graduate and professional students may petition the International Travel Policy Committee for approval a minimum of three months prior to proposed travel. Countries currently on Department of State Travel Warning can be viewed at www.travel.state.gov. For further information on the policy and/or the petition process, please contact Dru Simmons, international risk manager, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Office of Risk Management and Insurance.

Ohio State students traveling to international locations for the purpose of study abroad, undergraduate or graduate/dissertation research, internships or independent study are required to enroll in the university's supplemental international insurance which is provided through HTH Worldwide. The insurance includes coverage for medical, evacuation, repatriation, emergency assistance, and political security and natural disaster. Students participating in study abroad programming coordinated through the Office of International Affairs are automatically enrolled in the supplemental international insurance. Students who are traveling abroad independently may enroll online for the supplemental insurance. For instructions: http://oia.osu.edu/preparing-to-depart/health-insurance.html.

 

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