Submitted by The Institute for Humane Studies

When you think of the role of academia in society, what comes to mind? Perhaps you envision broader, intellectual discourse, or the civil exchange of ideas? It might be that you’re interested in how philosophy, politics, and economics are interwoven to shape policies and society. Or, you may be seeking to help strengthen pluralism and tolerance through the classical liberal ideas of intellectual and economic prosperity.

At the Institute for Humane Studies, we recognize the pivotal role the academy plays in advancing higher education’s core purpose of intellectual discovery and human progress. In order for these ideas to flourish, we offer programs and support to professors and graduate students who seek to study and teach the principles of the classical liberal tradition, including individual liberty, limited government, economic freedom, the rule of law, and open inquiry.

What Does Working with IHS Look Like?

There are many avenues for scholars to work with IHS and receive support. Some of the most frequently used services are our vast funding opportunities. IHS funding can be used by scholars at all different stages within their academic career and in many cases, be renewed annually.

Some opportunities, such as the Hayek Fund for Scholars, serve faculty, graduates, and even undergraduates, whereas others are tailored specifically for faculty and may revolve around a specific area of interest, such as the Sabbatical Research Fellowship, the Grant for Free Speech & Open Inquiry, or our Discourse Initiative Research Grants. Students enrolled in or planning to enroll in full-time PhD programs often seek out the Humane Studies Fellowship for additional support.

In addition to financial support, IHS provides services to scholars through programs and event support. With the onset of COVID-19, we have restructured our programs for an online format and are laying the groundwork for a hybrid model tentatively slated to debut sometime in 2021.

These programs can range from Discussion Colloquia, which seek to provide learning opportunities for scholars centered around written works on a particular topic; to Academic Event Support to provide faculty with assistance and partnership in hosting programming for their students and colleagues.

For scholars interested in publishing, our Research Workshops, provide valuable feedback from a variety of perspectives on a work, or multiple works, in progress. We also facilitate Academic Research Seminars that delve deeper than your average conference experience by providing scholars with the opportunity to collaborate with experts via moderated panel discussions and breakout sessions.

For graduate students and undergraduates interested in enrolling in PhD programs, we cater to career advancement with Mock Interviews and Dossier Reviews, as well as our Graduate School 101 seminar.

While graduate students can also take advantage of our Discussion Colloquia, Research Workshops, and Academic Research Seminars, we provide students with unique programming opportunities through our Advanced Topics in Liberty, Summer Seminars, and Graduate Conference.

Why IHS?

At the heart of our programming and funding opportunities are our initiatives; the goals and ideas that help shape the future of academic conversation and the good society. In the past year, IHS launched two crucial initiatives, the Key Challenges Within a Free Society project and the Discourse Initiative.

Key Challenges Within a Free Society
Born from the belief that every intellectual tradition benefits from challenging its ideas and cross-examination, the Key Challenges Project offers support for scholars addressing central questions related to equality, market dynamism, and open inquiry. Support is offered through our Research Workshops programming and funding given to editors and authors working on edited volumes and special journal issues.

The Discourse Initiative
The Discourse Initiative is a series of conversations, both written, in-person, and online, aimed at drawing scholarly attention back to the liberal tradition. These conversations gather scholars across the ideological spectrum who believe that the liberal tradition, broadly understood, is central to achieving the good society.

We are eager to support and partner with scholars for faculty research, academic programs, curriculum development, and discussion-based collaborative programs centered around the topics of:

  • Liberalism and Its Critics
  • Key Challenges Within a Free Society
  • Cultural Challenges in a Liberal Society
  • Contentious Topics Within the Liberal Tradition
  • Liberalism in Times of Crisis

Getting Involved 

If you are passionate about shaping public discourse through classical liberal ideas, we are excited to partner with you. Visit for more information and an overview of our Faculty and Graduate programs.
Twitter: @TheIHS