Student Research Grants


The mission of the Mershon Center is to advance the understanding of national security in a global context. Our understanding of international security draws from a wide range of perspectives, approaches, and substantive foci. Consequently, successful applicants may come from a variety of disciplines, including anthropology, communications, economics, geography, history, law, philosophy, political science, public affairs/administration, public policy, psychology, sociology, and other disciplines that engage international security broadly conceived.

The center places an especially strong emphasis on supporting interdisciplinary research. Applicants are encouraged to develop collaborative interdisciplinary proposals that include a statement on how their project will contribute to the interdisciplinary development of knowledge. Interdisciplinary teams should strive to become more than the sum of their parts. The strongest team proposals will imagine a breakthrough that might come from active conceptual, methodological, and epistemological engagement across disciplines. Toward this end, promising teams will have a plan for their collaborative process. (For suggestions, see R. Bendix et. al., Sustaining Interdisciplinary Collaboration: A Guide for the Academy, University of Illinois Press, 2017.)

To learn more about the types of projects being funded, please see project summaries on the Mershon Center website under Research and past Annual Reports.

Application Instructions

Student research grant applications must include five parts:

  • 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 health insurance each month of travel outside of the United States. For more information, please see Traveler Insurance on the Office of International Affairs website.
  • Letter of recommendation from project advisor or dissertation committee chair.
  • Official copy of student's college transcript or advising report.

The 2019-20 Graduate Student Research Grant application form. It will download as a fillable Microsoft Word file. Please type all information requested for the grant application directly into this file. Then send the cover sheet, proposal, and budget as one Word document along with transcript or advising report to Faculty recommendation letters may be sent separately.

Please note that all student research grant applications, whether from graduate students or undergraduates, will be judged in the same competition pool. While a handful of undergraduates have received research grants over the years, historically the majority of research grants are awarded to graduate students. 

For questions regarding the application process, please contact Erin Dyer, Program Coordinator at the Mershon Center, at or at (614) 688-5944. Students with winning grant applications will be informed in March or early April. Funds will be available for a full academic year. Students who receive Mershon Center funding will be responsible for submitting a close-out report and assistance with publicity by providing photos or other graphic materials.

All awards are subject to the rules and regulations of The Ohio State University, including travel to risk designated countries. Please contact Dru Simmons, international risk manager,, Office of Risk Management and Insurance, with questions.

The deadline for receiving Student Research Grant applications is 5 p.m. on Friday, January 31, 2019.