The American Trust for the British Library and the Newberry Library 2023–2024 Transatlantic Fellowship 


The American Trust for the British Library (ATBL) Transatlantic Fellowship Program is conceived as an integral part of the ATBL’s mission to promote and support the work of the British Library, one of the world’s greatest research libraries. The ATBL seeks to promote transatlantic understanding through related events, lectures, and discussion in the United States and within the United Kingdom, as well as providing incremental financial and in-kind gift support for the British Library’s collection, preservation, and outreach activities.

The ATBL’s Transatlantic Fellowship Program supports research projects that make use of collections in any department in the British Library as well as those housed with a partner institution in the United States. The term “transatlantic” refers not to the subject matter of a Fellow’s proposed project (though projects with transatlantic subjects are always welcomed), but instead to the transatlantic collaboration between the ATBL, on behalf of the collections of the British Library, and the holdings of an American partner organization.

The Program especially targets graduate students, recent PhDs, early career scholars, adjunct faculty, independent scholars, librarians, or curatorial staff who otherwise do not have access to departmental research funds.


The 2023–2024 ATBL and Newberry Library Transatlantic Fellowship Program

This 2023–2024 Transatlantic Fellowship is designed to support at least four weeks of research between both the British Library and the Newberry Library with at least one week of research time at each institution. A projected schedule of study will be outlined as part of the Fellowship application. The successful applicant, hailing from any academic discipline, will propose a research project that makes equal use of primary source material found in any collection of the British Library as well as in the Newberry Library.

For the Transatlantic Fellowship Program, collections intended for consultation should be those not currently digitized by either organization, thereby requiring the applicant’s in-person use of the holdings. We appreciate that some projects concerned with object materiality may require in-person consultation of holdings currently digitized. In this instance, we ask applicants to explain the need to conduct on-site research using already digitized resources in their research proposal.

Applicants may wish to reach out to reference and research staff at both the British Library and at the Newberry Library prior to application to determine the feasibility of proposed collection access. For subject area expertise inquiries at the British Library, please consult the Library’s expertise page. For general field inquiries at the British Library, please consult the Library’s reference contact information. For inquiries regarding the collections at the Newberry Library, please reach out to reference staff at reference@newberry.org.


Details

The amount of the Fellowship will be $5,000 USD and will be awarded by the ATBL following the successful Fellow’s confirmation of research appointments at both the British Library, and at the American institution. The Fellowship is open to any doctoral candidates or post-doctoral researchers 18 years or older. 

In addition to the $5,000 USD award, the Fellow will join the ATBL as a complimentary one-year Library Fellow for the calendar year following completion of the Fellowship Program. 

Fellows will be required to produce a brief written report (750 words) at the conclusion of the research period, geared towards a general knowledge audience, that will be published and promoted on the ATBL’s website and shared with the Newberry Library. The Fellow will have the opportunity to present on the research completed on a designated ATBL panel at the Modern Language Association’s (MLA’s) annual conference and at the ATBL’s Annual General Meeting.

Fellows may also be asked if they wish to provide additional multi-media content (i.e., brief interviews or short summary copy) for the ATBL website and for newsletter publications, though this is not a condition of Fellowship acceptance. Partner organizations may, at their discretion, provide other opportunities for Fellows to participate in the life of the organization or showcase the Fellow’s work.


Eligibility

The Fellowship is open to any doctoral candidates or post-doctoral researchers 18 years or older. Fellowships will not be open to employees at the Newberry Library. If you are currently holding a Newberry Library fellowship or have recently held a Newberry Library fellowship, please reach out to research@newberry.org to confirm your eligibility.


Non-Discrimination Policy

The American Trust for the British Library and its Transatlantic Fellowship Partner Organizations do not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender expression, age, height, weight, physical or mental ability, veteran status, military obligations, and marital status when considering Fellowship applicants. Demographic information related to the above may be voluntarily provided by the Fellowship applicant on the online application form, and such information may be considered by the review committees of the American Trust for the British Library and the Newberry Library as part of a holistic Fellowship application evaluation. For further details about the Newberry Library’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiative, please consult the Newberry Library’s website.

The review committees of both the American Trust for the British Library and the Newberry Library will abide by a conflicts of interest policy which recuses review committee members from evaluating candidates with whom members directly work or share current institutional affiliations, or of whom members have direct and personal knowledge. All applications will be assessed in relation to the applicant’s demonstrated connections between the proposed research topic and the collections to be consulted at both the British Library and the Newberry Library according to the criteria specified by each individual Fellowship Program.


How to Apply

Applicants should apply via the application portal (accessed via button below).

All application materials (including letters of recommendation) must be uploaded to the application portal:

All applications must include the following:

  1. Cover letter. 
  2. Curriculum vitae.
  3. Research Proposal of 1,000 – 1,200 words.  Research proposals must indicate the collections at both the British Library and the Newberry Library to be consulted.
  4. Two confidential academic letters of recommendation that speak specifically to the import and significance of the research project proposed in relation to the respective institutional collections. Applicants may use digital dossier services (such as Interfolio, ChronicleVitae, or others) to submit letters of recommendation if desired.
  5. Proposed research schedule.
  6. One-page bibliography specifying materials to be consulted both at the British Library and at the Newberry Library.

The deadline for submission of a completed application is December 15, 2022. 

Incomplete applications will not be considered for the Fellowship.


The review of applications will be conducted jointly by the ATBL and the Newberry Library.

Notification of award will be emailed by the end of April 2023.

The Fellow will be responsible for securing housing as well as for coordinating the research visits with both the British Library and the Newberry Library.

Research must be completed at both organizations within one calendar year of the date of receipt of Fellowship funds.


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