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CURA Dissertation Research Grant

SERVES: Doctoral students at the University of Minnesota (all campuses)

PURPOSE: The CURA Dissertation Research Grant is intended to support dissertation research on significant issues or topics related to urban areas.

PROGRAM: The program provides one year of support ($20,000) to a doctoral candidate in good academic standing at the University of Minnesota for the purpose of completing dissertation research on a significant issue or topic related to urban areas in the upper Midwest region of the United States. Recipients must have passed the preliminary exam stage and have approved dissertation proposals by March 1, 2014. Following completion of the research, recipients are expected to produce a 3,500-word manuscript suitable for publication in the CURA Reporter, and to acknowledge CURA support in any other publications stemming from the dissertation research assisted through this grant.

HOW TO APPLY: Send the following application materials (ideally as a PDF or Word attachment) to the CURA contact listed below:

  1. Research Abstract. The research abstract should provide a succinct and understandable description of the dissertation research. The abstract should be no longer than five (5) pages and should contain the following elements:
    • Background and statement of the research problem;
    • Goals and objectives of the research, including main hypotheses;
    • Research design and methods;
    • Potential significance of the research;
    • Timeline for research
  2. Letters of Support. Two letters of support are required—one from the candidate’s dissertation advisor and the other from the departmental Director of Graduate Studies. The letters should specifically speak to the applicant’s ability to conduct the proposed research, the quality of the applicant’s performance to date in the graduate program, and the applicant’s record of progress through the graduate program.
  3. Copy of graduate transcript. Unofficial copies are acceptable.
  4. Summary of graduate financial support to date. List the source, amount, and dates of financial assistance received to date while a graduate student at the University of Minnesota.

SELECTION CRITERIA: Applications will be judged on the following criteria, in order of importance:

  1. Quality of the research abstract
  2. The urban focus of the topic
  3. The significance of the topic, either for advancing knowledge in the field or potential for policy/community impact
  4. Relevance of the topic and the research to urban areas in the upper Midwest region of the United States
  5. The potential of the student to complete the dissertation within 18 months
  6. Student need


Send application materials, and direct questions, to:

Dr. Edward Goetz, Director
330 HHH Center
301 19th Ave. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55455
curadiss@umn.edu (materials sent to any other e-mail address may not be considered)

Edward Goetz Director, CURA 612-624-8737