Upcoming Humanities Grant Events

For Humanities Grant Inquiries Contact

James Nelson
Director of Grants
jnelson “at” mihumanities.org

Help Support Michigan Humanities

General Guidelines

Eligible Applicants

The applicant organization must be a nonprofit authorized to operate in the state of Michigan. The organization need not be incorporated and may be a public agency. Individuals are not eligible. Sponsoring organizations are encouraged to collaborate with other organizations.

Eligible/Ineligible Expenses

Humanities grant funds MAY be used for:

  • Public forums or conferences
  • Lecture/discussion series; honoraria and travel for speakers and presenters
  • Book/film discussion programs about humanities-related topics
  • Interpretive exhibits and catalogues
  • Research (may be one component of the project, but not the sole purpose)
  • Publications (must be made available to the public)
  • Creative or performing arts that serve as a catalyst in a project in which humanities are central, and include interpretation and/or discussion of performances, concerts, literary and art works
  • Development of digital projects

Humanities grant funds MAY NOT be used for:

  • Advocacy or action programs, or social services
  • Travel for study or to attend conferences
  • Field trip transportation expenses and admission fees
  • Scholarships or academic credit
  • Construction or renovation, property purchases (some rental is eligible), artifact restoration
  • General operating expenses
  • Food (except for resource personnel traveling to a project), refreshments or entertainment
  • Individuals; general operating support; fundraising activities

Applicant Match Requirements

Grantees must provide cost share in the form of cash or in-kind resources as follows:

100% Cost Share required for all projects up to $15,000.

Cash Cost Share: Includes cash contributions made by third parties as well as all contributions made by the sponsoring organization in order to implement the project. For the sponsoring organization, cash cost-share may include the salaries of project staff, cost of space to conduct project activities, and supplies and service costs related to the project.

 In-Kind Cost Share: Includes all donated goods, services, equipment or facilities. In-kind contributions must be fully documented and could encompass items such as the value of a project participant waiving their normal fee for services.

Project Advisors: 

At least one humanities professional/scholar is required to participate in the project.

Project Advisors can be humanities scholars, professionals, or community-based experts with subject expertise relevant to the proposed project. Project Advisors encourage dialogue, critical thinking, and analysis and they contribute knowledge, methods, and resources that are at the core of the humanities.

Project Period

Project periods may cover up to one year from the announcement of the award.

Project Evaluation

Applicants are invited to propose their own means of evaluation, however Michigan Humanities does have an audience evaluation form available that organizations can adapt for their project. Michigan Humanities Audience Survey


Frequently Asked Questions


Can my project include art related activities?

Art activities may be part of the project if used as a catalyst for discussion or Interpretation of humanities themes. Humanities themes must be central to the project. Art and music education activities are not eligible, nor are projects that are solely art-focused.

Can I fund indirect costs with grant funds?

Michigan Humanities grant funds cannot be used for indirect costs or administrative fees. Michigan Humanities does, however, allow 10% of the grant amount to be used as cost-share attributed to indirect costs. For example, if the grant request is $15,000 then a maximum of $1,500 of indirect costs could be used as applicant cost-share in the project budget.

What is an EIN Number?

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is the number used by the Internal Revenue Service to recognize an organization. Your organization’s administrator should have it on file.

What is a DUNS number?

The Data Universal Number System (DUNS) has been adopted by the federal government to track how federal grant money is allocated. DUNS numbers identify your organization and are required by the Michigan Humanities for all grant applications. If you do not have a DUNS number you may apply for one at: http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform/pages/CCRSearch.jsp