Skip to main content

Northwestern Buffett Institute for Global Affairs

Graduate Fellowships

The Buffett Institute offers graduate fellowships from one to four quarters for PhD students whose research deals with subjects outside the contiguous or continental United States.

This support comes in two forms: a research fellowship for students in years 3-5, most of whom will be conducting their research abroad, and a dissertation fellowship intended for students who are completing their PhDs and are in years 6 and 7.

Buffett Research Fellowship Program

We will be awarding the Buffett Research Fellowship of one to four quarters for students in years 3-5. The most competitive applications will include a clear statement about the major questions to be explored, the sources and methods to be used, as well as the significance of the dissertation project to the literature on the subject. Please write your proposal so that the significance of the dissertation is clear to people outside your field. Note that students are permitted four total quarters of this fellowship over the course of their career and may only apply once per academic year. The application portal will open soon, and applications will be due March 24. The application will require the following:

  • A project narrative of no more than five double-spaced pages that explains your dissertation research and its significance for a general scholarly audience. In addition to clearly articulating the argument your dissertation makes, this narrative should describe the state of current debates on this topic and your intervention in these debates, indicating the global and international dimensions of your work. It should also include a plan of work for the research that this funding will support; this plan should outline what research site visits and related activities that will be undertaken. The five-page limit does not include notes and bibliography, which should be limited to two additional pages.
  • Two letters of reference: one from your advisor and another from a committee member or someone else who knows your work well
  • Departmental approval from your DGS

Buffett Dissertation Fellowship Program

The Buffett Dissertation Fellowship Program provides financial and programmatic support to an interdisciplinary cohort of approximately 10 advanced graduate students (in years 6 and 7). Financial support includes an enhanced stipend and tuition coverage for one year (three quarters). Programming includes essential dissertation completion support and professional development opportunities to improve scholars’ prospects on the academic and non-academic job markets. The application portal will open soon, and applications will be due March 24. The application will require the following:

  • A project narrative of no more than five double-spaced pages that explains your dissertation research and its significance for a general scholarly audience. In addition to clearly articulating the argument your dissertation makes, this narrative should describe the state of current debates on this topic and your intervention in these debates, indicating the global and international dimensions of your work. It should also include a table of contents for the dissertation, indicating what chapters are complete and providing the status of others. The five-page limit does not include notes and bibliography, which should be limited to two additional pages.
  • A writing sample of up to 35 pages (not including notes)
  • Two letters of reference: one from your advisor and another from a committee member or someone else who knows your work well
  • Departmental approval from your DGS