International Early Career Scholar Travel Grant

The Society for Psychological Anthropology is pleased to announce the creation of new travel grant program funded by a generous donation from an anonymous benefactor. The purpose of the program is to provide funding for international scholars who are early in their careers to travel to the United States to participate in conferences affiliated with the SPA.

The grants will provide funding to pay for all transportation costs, room and board, and conference registration fees for the scholar to present his or her paper or poster at SPA Biennial meetings (held in odd numbered years), and, in alternating years, to present scholarly papers or posters in SPA-sponsored sessions at the AAA Annual Meetings. Meetings for which the grants will be available over the next four years include:

2014 AAA Annual Meeting in Washington DC

2015 SPA Biennial Meeting in Boston, MA

2016 AAA Annual Meeting in Minneapolis, MN

2017 SPA Biennial Meeting

The SPA anticipates making two grants annually of approximately $2,000, although it will consider both smaller and slightly larger grants.

Mentorship by a Senior Scholar:

In addition to receiving travel funding, arrangements will be made for each grant recipient to meet with a senior psychological anthropologist in the applicant’s area of study at the conference for the purpose of mentoring and networking.


To be eligible for the travel grant, the individual must: (1) be presenting a paper or poster at the meeting in question, (2) have received a master’s level graduate degree but be no greater than five years post-PhD, and (3) be a non-United States citizen who is currently working in an academic or applied capacity related to anthropology or attending a graduate school located outside of the United States. Individuals may apply for the grant as many times as they wish, but they may only receive the grant twice. The applicant need not be a member of the SPA or the AAA.

Selection Criteria:

Applicants will be selected based on their potential to contribute to psychological anthropology as a field of study relative to their level of education and experience. When all other factors are judged to be equivalent, the selection committee will select applicants who have not yet received their doctoral degree. Consideration will also be given to select applicants who will increase the representation of scholars from regions of the world who do not typically attend SPA-affiliated conferences.


To apply for the grant, applicants must provide: (1) a written statement that concisely outlines the specific professional benefits for participating in the session and describes the potential contribution of the applicant’s current research to psychological anthropology as a field (one single-spaced page maximum); (2) a brief curriculum vitae (six pages maximum); (3) the abstract for the paper or poster to be presented at the conference; (4) an estimated budget of the costs to attend the meeting in question; and (5) a letter of recommendation from someone familiar with the applicant’s research. In the budget, applicants must provide details on any other source of travel funds for which they have applied or received to attend the meeting.

To submit an application, please email the statement, curriculum vitae, abstract and budget (items #1-4) as a single PDF or MS Word document to Harold Odden, SPA Secretary / Treasurer ( The letter of recommendation should also be sent as a PDF or MS Word document, but may come in a separate email. It is the applicant’s responsibility to insure that the letter of recommendation arrives before the deadline.

Deadline for applicants for the 2015 SPA Biennial Meeting: Sunday, January 25th, 2015
Please note that the committee is aware of the need of some international scholars to hear the selection committee’s decision as soon as possible so as to be able to make travel and visa arrangements. Consequently, we urge applicants to submit their materials as soon as possible, and the committee will make its decision as quickly as possible. If the scholar will not be able to attend the Biennial conference without this funding, we ask that you note this fact in your email submitting your application and do not register for the conference. If you are awarded the grant, we will then ask you to register and pay all conference registration fees.

Interested in making a contribution?

You may make a donation to the International Early Career Scholar Travel Grant Endowment by clicking on the link below. All donations are tax-deductible.

Donate to the International Early Career Scholar Travel Grant Endowment.

All award and selection committees abide by the SPA’s Conflict of Interest Statement and Recusal Policy.