The American Council of Learned Societies Invites Proposals to Host 2021 Leading Edge Fellows – Deadline January 18, 2021

Program Partners Early Career Humanities Scholars of Vision with Organizations Advancing Social Justice and Equity in Society

The American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) has launched the third competition of the Leading Edge Fellowship program, which places talented, socially engaged humanities PhDs with a range of national and community-based nonprofit organizations to advance projects promoting justice and equity in society. The competition is made possible by the generous support of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

In this third phase of the program, ACLS will partner with up to 40 nonprofit organizations for a national fellowship program placing early career PhDs with partners for 12-month posts expected to commence September 2021.

ACLS is now accepting applications from prospective host organizations for the next cycle of the program, with proposals due by January 18, 2021. ACLS will partner with organizations of diverse kinds working in communities across the country. Successful proposals will center anti-racist approaches to prototyping a more just, equitable, and sustainable future.

Learn More About the Leading Edge Fellowship Request for Proposals


ACLS provides Leading Edge Fellows with a $60,000 stipend, as well as health insurance and professional development funding. Fellows will lead substantive, community-engaged projects for partner organizations that advance equity and justice, civic participation, and anti-racist policies and practices. Fellows also will participate in a variety of professional development and networking activities designed to help translate the experiences of their 12-month placements into future work in the academy and beyond.

ACLS launched the Leading Edge Fellowship program in July 2020 with support from the Henry Luce Foundation. The roster of current Leading Edge partnering organizations and projects, which support communities hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, is available here.

For more information about the program, contact