Harvard China Faculty Grant Program

Partnerships: Teaching and Research Across the Pacific

As the major internal funder of Harvard research related to China, the Harvard China Fund administers the Harvard China Faculty Grant Program to advance the research goals of Harvard faculty and improve the education of Harvard students, in collaboration with Chinese partners. Beginning in 2013, the Harvard China Fund expanded the program to offer support for academic conferences to be held at the Harvard Center Shanghai. Please see our FY18 Call for Proposals (due November 15, 2017) for more information about this year's program.

Since 2007, the Harvard China Faculty Grant Program has awarded over $3 million in grants to 45 faculty from across the University. A sampling of funded projects includes:

archaeology • cataloguing of local histories • civil society/nonprofit organizations • crisis management research/training • disability law and rights • economic growth/air pollution control • health systems reform • humanities education • insurance access • landscape and ecological urbanism • medical training • mental health stigma • moral and civic engagement • seismic hazard assessment • social injustice • village development • water purification • conference on next wave of Chinese urbanization

Every school at Harvard has multiple projects and academic partners in China. Please visit Past Awards for more details.

Beginning in 2011, the Harvard China Fund has held an Annual Research Symposium at the Harvard Center Shanghai to generate research proposals and promote scholarly exchange between Harvard faculty and their Chinese colleagues. These symposia have addressed the following key themes: Humanities and Higher Education • Public Health • Civil Society and Governance • Energy and Environment.

FY18 Call for Proposals

As the major internal funder of Harvard research related to China, the Harvard China Fund administers the Harvard China Faculty Grant Program to advance the research goals of Harvard faculty in collaboration with Chinese partners. Since 2007, the Harvard China Fund has awarded faculty grants totaling over $3 million to 45 recipients from across the University.

For the FY18 grant cycle, we are offering conference grants of up to $60,000 each as well as research grants of $50,000 - $100,000. The proposed conference should take place at the Harvard Center Shanghai, preferably before March 2019. We welcome conference proposals in all research fields. Research proposals are welcome in any field and we especially encourage proposals in the areas of traditional Chinese arts and culture, environmental studies and education.

Preference will be given to proposed projects for which funding might not be otherwise available from traditional sources. Proposals are judged partially or fully on the following criteria:

  • Academic excellence and benefit to or involvement of Harvard faculty
  • Feasibility, innovation and interdisciplinary nature
  • Organizational support (from Harvard and from Chinese universities and relevant institutions)
  • Potential for impact in China

Application Details

Proposals will be reviewed by a sub-committee of the Harvard China Fund Steering Committee (comprised of 14 scholars from 10 of the University’s schools). The principal applicant must be full-time Harvard faculty at the assistant, associate, or full professorial rank. Harvard Medical School faculty must hold one of these titles and have a primary appointment in one of HMS’s basic or social science departments. (Although faculty members at HMS-affiliated hospitals are not eligible for these grants, they are welcome to organize conferences at the Harvard Center Shanghai. Please send an inquiry to juliacai@fas.harvard.edu for more information.)

For conference proposals, please submit a written proposal including:

Narrative (suggested length of two pages):

  • Conference topic
  • Rationale—why is this important? What are the objectives?
  • List of target participants, including Harvard faculty and Chinese colleagues, as well as other international scholars as appropriate
  • Time frame
  • Preliminary budget

For research proposals, please submit a one-page abstract including a list of key participants, and one-page preliminary budget. Following a review of the proposed projects, finalists will be asked to submit a formal proposal.

Deadline - November 15, 2017. 

Please submit proposals electronically to hcfchair@fas.harvard.edu.

Award announcement: Final decisions for conference grants and second round decisions for research proposals will be announced by January 10, 2018.

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Please contact Julia Cai if you have any questions:
juliacai@fas.harvard.edu
617-496-1587

2017 Awards

Cyberinfrastructure for Historical China Studies

Cyberinfrastructure for Historical China Studies 
($45K)

2017 Perspectives on Chinese Contemporary Music Conference – Composition, Theory, and Reception

2017 Perspectives on Chinese Contemporary Music Conference – Composition, Theory, and Reception 
($20K)

The Meritocracy Project: China and India

The Meritocracy Project: China and India 
($40K)

The Development of Chinese Higher Education Leaders

The Development of Chinese Higher Education Leaders 
($45K)

Enhancing China’s Financial Systems and Regulatory Efficiency

Enhancing China’s Financial Systems and Regulatory Efficiency: An Exclusive Conference for PRC Government & Regulatory Official 
($30K)

Bringing the Ancient DNA Revolution to Chinese Archaeology

Bringing the Ancient DNA Revolution to Chinese Archaeology 
($40K)

Past Awards

2016

The Making of China’s Cultural Heritage

The Making of China’s Cultural Heritage

$50K

Bringing the Ancient DNA Revolution to Chinese Archaeology

Bringing the Ancient DNA Revolution to Chinese Archaeology

$40K

Big Data in Healthcare

Big Data in Healthcare : The Impact on Healthcare Quality, Cost and Access in China

$50K

Advancing Learning and Global Health in the Digital Age

Advancing Learning and Global Health in the Digital Age: Harvard-China Digital Learning and the Future of Professional Education Initiative

$20K

Building Leadership for Healthy Urban Sustainability

Building Leadership for Healthy Urban Sustainability

$50K

2015

The Arnold Arboretum in China

The Arnold Arboretum in China : Photographic Exhibition and Botanical Conference

$10K

Harvard‐China Forum on Arabic and Islamic Studies

Harvard‐China Forum on Arabic and Islamic Studies

$40K

The Chinese Legal Profession in the Age of Globalization

The Chinese Legal Profession in the Age of Globalization

$40K

Developing Child Mental Health Capacity in China

Developing Child Mental Health Capacity in China: Innovation and Sustainability

$40K

2014

Chinese Urbanization(Conference)

“The Next Wave of Chinese Urbanization: Impact on Economic Growth, Urban Governance and the Built Environment within and beyond China” (Conference)

$50K

Bing Wang (GSD) will organize a conference at the Harvard Center Shanghai examining and speculating on potential new trajectories for China’s next wave of urbanization, including debates and discussions of the challenges and opportunities for China’s new leadership in urbanization policy, the consequential impact of directional shift on China’s built environment, both urban and rural, and the empirical applicability of urban governance paradigms on China’s sustainability, global competitiveness, and social stability. Participants will include leading practitioners and policy makers involved in China’s  urban governance, urban planning and design, investment and policy making.

Abstract

Development of Civic Consciousness (Conference)

“Proposed Harvard Center Shanghai Symposium: Education and the Development of Civic Consciousness in China”

$50K

Robert Selman (HGSE & HMS) and Helen Haste (HGSE) will organize a 1.5 day symposium bringing together about 25 leading researchers from Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and the West, including experts in civic education, cultural studies and socio-cognitive development and experts on China’s civil society, political institutions, and education reforms, to address the question “What educational reforms are needed to prepare China’s younger citizens for principled, democratic, and global citizenship?”.

Abstract

Private Roles for Public Goals

“Private Roles for Public Goals in China: Contracting, Collaboration, and Delegation for Urban Community Services”

$41K

Richard Zeckhauser (HKS) in collaboration with John Donahue (HKS), Yijia Jing (Fudan) and Karen Eggleston (Stanford) will spend a year conducting a new empirical study of community service centers in several Chinese communities (including several districts of Shanghai), as well as preliminary work on Chinese delivery models for public services across a range of policy arenas. They will explore the merits and drawbacks of three modes for tapping private-sector capabilities: contracting, collaborative governance and delegation. The proposed research seeks to understand how growing private participation in social service delivery – and eventually, across a broader range of public purposes – establishes a foundation for collaborative governance in China.

Abstract

Suicide Surveillance System

“Establishing a suicide attempt surveillance system in Ningxia Province, China”

$50K

Matthew Miller (HSPH) will spend two years developing a real-time electronic surveillance system that will identify all suicide attempts treated in the emergency departments of general hospitals in Ningxia (a sparely populated province in northwest China) that can subsequently be used as a platform to initiate additional studies on the causes and prevention of suicide, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control of Ningxia Province and the Suicide Research Center of the Shanghai Mental Health Center.

Abstract

2013

Improving Public Health

“Improving Public Health Through Strengthening Health Information System in Urban and Rural China: An Evaluation and Demonstration Project” 

$100K

Together with colleagues from the Minhang District of Shanghai and Wenchuan County of Sichuan Province,  Yuanli Liu and Ashih Jha (HSPH) will spend the next year analyzing the implementation and effective use of Health Information Technology (HIT) in urban and rural settings. Using Minhang District as a model, they will determine the impact of HIT adoption on quality of care, especially on the effectiveness of chronic diseases management, and assess which lessons from Minhang can be applied to areas of Western China, such as Wenchuan County.

Abstract

Patient-Physician Trust

“Patient-Physician Trust and Mistrust in China: A Qualitative Study” 

$120K

Arthur Kleinman (FAS/HMS) and Eric Campbell (HMS),  together with collaborators Joseph Tucker (Univ. of North Carolina), Nie Jing-Bao (Univ. of Otago, New Zealand), and Wei Zhu (Fudan Univ.), will spend the next three years conducting a study to investigate patient-physician trust in China using a biosocial approach that integrates anthropological, sociological, normative ethical, cross-country comparative and social policy analyses. Their findings will ultimately establish a set of recommendations for health systems interventions, communication strategies, and medical training reform in order to rebuild patient-physician trust throughout China.

Abstract

Rural Health System Reforms

“Advance Implementation Science for Rural Health System Reforms in China”

$50K

Over the next 1.5 years, William Hsiao (HSPH) will conduct a study with faculty and students from the Tongji Medical School of Huazhong University of Science & Technology to analyze and compare current implementations of health system reforms in rural areas of western China. His team will investigate how local governments interpret national policy and how they issue directives to and govern township health centers (THCs).

Abstract

2012

Cognitive Archaeology

“Embodied Cosmology: or Cognitive Archeology of Early Chinese Tombs” 

$45K

Together with colleagues at Sichuan University, the Central Academy of Fine Arts, and the Institute of Han Pictorial Art at Beida, Eugene Wang (FAS-History of Art and Architecture) will spend 2.5 years studying Han cliff tombs to align materiality-driven disciplines (archeology and art history) with concept-driven disciplines (religion, intellectual history) in the study of the technology of the body and cosmic consciousness in ancient China. Ultimately, Professor Wang will develop a new course and produce a manuscript based on his findings.

Abstract

Medical Mandarin

“Harvard Medical School Medical Mandarin” 

$9.45K

Over the next 1.5 years, Qin Shan (HMS-Children’s Hospital) will assist HMS/HSDM/HSPH students in developing basic language skills to communicate effectively with Mandarin-speaking patients. Students will be taught common medical Mandarin terms and expressions and gain a thorough understanding of traditional Chinese medicine and Chinese culture through language study.

Abstract

Website

Humanities Education

“Humanities Education for Non-Humanities Undergraduates”

$88.1K

Jay Harris (FAS-Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations) and Billy So (Hong Kong University of Science & Technology) have been awarded 2 years of funding to organize workshops and a forum to examine and reflect on humanities general education at the two universities and other sample cases, with the goal of engaging in the broader discourse on humanities education for non-humanities majors in a global age.

Abstract

Low-cost Water Purification Systems

“Low-cost Water Purification Systems for Arsenic Removal from Drinking Water in Rural China” 

$99K

In collaboration with colleagues at Tianjin University, Peter Girguis (FAS-Organismic & Evolutionary Biology) will spend 1.5 years conducting “open source” research to develop a small-scale system that uses energy derived from biomass to remove arsenic from drinking water at a high rate and low cost.

Abstract 

Landscape and Ecological Urbanism Part 3

“Landscape and Ecological Urbanism: Future Alternatives for Beijing Part 3” 

$30K

Visiting Professor Kongjian Yu will offer part 3 of his advanced studio course in spring 2012, assisted by visiting Critic Adrian Blackwell and GSD Lecturer Stephen Ervin, and again in conjunction with Peking University. The same over-arching issues will be addressed as in the past two studios: the social, ecological, urbanistic, and other impacts of the expansion of Beijing into its periphery, particularly emphasizing the new ‘foothills strategy’ to prevent further urbanization from spreading into the agricultural plains, and rather encourage development up into the foothills of the surrounding mountains to the west and north. This year’s study area is the Qinglonghu township, Fangshan district, 60 km southwest of Beijing.

Abstract

Website

2011

Curriculum on Civil Society

“Developing a Curriculum on Civil Society and Nonprofit Organizations in China” 

$100K

Christopher Stone and Anthony Saich (HKS) will spend 1.5-years building a cross-discipline curriculum about the development of the citizen sector in China, focusing on understanding the uniqueness of China’s nonprofits against the special political, economic, and cultural backgrounds of China. The Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations will provide programmatic and administrative support in recruiting a team of seminar speakers, supporting teaching faculty, organizing field trips and workshops in China, and partnering with foundations, universities and government agencies in China.

Abstract

Improving Seismic Hazard Assessment

“Improving Seismic Hazard Assessment in China and the United States Based on Lessons Learned from the 2008 Wenchuan (M7.9) Earthquake” 

$100K

The two-year grant awarded to John Shaw (FAS-Earth and Planetary Sciences) will enable him to develop state-of-the-art community fault and velocity models for the Sichuan area that will serve as the basis for an improved understanding of earthquake hazards in the region. Collaborations with Nanjing University and PetroChina will lead to field work and research in China, student exchanges, joint publications in scientific journals, and a new course at Harvard on the active tectonics of China.

Abstract

Young People and Civic Engagement in a Changing Society

“Young People and Civic Engagement in a Changing Society”

$100K

Robert Selman (HGSE/HMS) and Helen Haste (HGSE) were awarded a two-year grant to explore how Chinese school students conceptualize and experience citizenship and civic and ethical decision-making. The project will involve professors and students from East China Normal University, and broaden our understanding of cultural factors and developmental processes at stake in modern Chinese society.

Abstract

Addressing Stigma

“Addressing Stigma to Improve Care for Persons with Serious Mental Illness in China” 

$100K

In collaboration with colleagues from the Shanghai Mental Center and the Peking University Institute for Mental Health, Byron Good (HMS) and Arthur Kleinman (HMS/FAS-Anthropology) will spend two years: 1) piloting an innovative model of family support group intervention; developing a strategic plan for addressing social stigma associated with mental illness in China; and organizing a set of seminars and workshops to advance student research on the topic.

Abstract

The Economy of China

Course Development – “The Economy of China”

$90K

To address growing student interest and a lack of current offerings at Harvard, John Campbell (FAS-Economics) has proposed to create a visiting professorship to cover the teaching gap. Qualified candidates will specialize in Chinese or Asian economic development as their main research focus and will be knowledgeable about the broader political and social context. Ideally, they will also have a command of at least one major East Asian Language.

Landscape and Ecological Urbanism

“Landscape and Ecological Urbanism: Future Alternatives for Beijing” 

$30K

Distinguished GSD alumnus Kongjian Yu offered an advanced studio course in spring 2010 related to an existing Peking University program he runs in collaboration with the Beijing Land Bureau and the Beijing Planning Bureau. The studio was conducted with the support of Jane Hutton and Steve Ervin from the GSD. Students performed site analysis using social and economic questionnaires, and developed various urban and landscape strategies for the region based on analysis of the landscape and ecosystems, social economic context, and regional and global comparative studies.

Abstract

2010

Digital Archive for Chinese Local History

“A Digital Archive for Chinese Local History” 

$150K

The two-year grant awarded to James Robson and Michael Szonyi (FAS-East Asian Languages and Civilizations) will support the infrastructure and lay the foundations for a permanent digital archive of unique historical documents and materials collected in various localities in China. The archive project will yield three significant outcomes: 1) produce significant new research on the religion, culture, and society of Hunan province from the Qing dynasty to the present; 2) produce the world’s leading web-based archive for Chinese local historical materials; and 3) create new networks of scholarly collaboration.

Abstract

China’s Health System Reforms

“Developing a Wintersession Course on China’s Health System Reforms” 

$50K

Yuanli Liu (HSPH) was awarded a one-year grant to develop a comprehensive curriculum for a Harvard wintersession course on China’s healthcare system reforms. This course will have three parts: 1) a preparatory seminar series at Harvard; 2) three weeks of field study culminating in a policy seminar with the Chinese Ministry of Health; and 3) a final research paper. A series of teaching cases will also be developed into a textbook for use by HSPH, HMS, KSG, and College professors.

Abstract

Research & Teaching in China

“From Hunting and Gathering to Early Village Lifeways – Research & Teaching in China”

$50K

Ofer Bar-Yosef (FAS-Anthropology) will use his two-year grant to: 1) write a bi-lingual book on the technologies of making Chinese stone tools(including their method of classification and function); 2) teach two Harvard courses in the School of Archaeology and Museuology in Peking University; and 3) conduct joint excavations of an early village site with colleagues from the Institute of Archaeology and Cultural Relics of Hunan Province, Peking University, and Harvard University.

Abstract

2009

Chinese Attitudes

“Chinese Attitudes toward Inequality and Distributive Injustice: Changes at the Societal and Individual Level” 

$100K

Martin Whyte (FAS-Sociology) will use his three-year grant to explore the patterns of change over time in Chinese citizen’s attitudes toward inequality and distributive injustice issues. Working with colleagues from Harvard, Yale, Oxford, UC-Irvine, Texas A&M-Kingsville, and Beida, this national survey will build upon the findings of a comparable survey previously conducted in 2004.

Abstract

Improved Access to Medicines

“Interdisciplinary Research and Training for Improved Access to and Use of Medicines in China” 

$150K

In order to address China’s challenge of providing affordable access to essential medicines for its 1.3 billion citizens, Anita Wagner (HMS) and her colleagues at Harvard School of Public Health, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital University of Medical Sciences, the Beijing Public Health Insurance Committee, the Ministry of Health and WHO China will use a one-year grant to conduct research and training on medicines financing in the urban and rural health systems in China and expand the novel Medicines and Insurance Coverage (MedIC) Initiative to China.

Abstract

Website

Villages in Development

“Villages in Development”

$175K

Margaret Crawford (GSD) was awarded a four-year grant to identify and analyze how a range of different Guangzhou villages in the Pearl River Delta might contribute to and be integrated into local urban and economic development in the region. She will conduct a joint seminar and studio sequence, collaborating with landscape and planning students and faculty at the South China University of Technology.

Abstract

Childbearing and Childrearing

“A Longitudinal Study of Childbearing and Childrearing in Two Chinese Cities” 

$125K

The two-year grant awarded to Vanessa Fong (HGSE) and Hirokazu Yoshikawa (HGSE) will allow them to link two longitudinal studies of families in Dalian and Nanjing in order to examine the long-term implications of China’s one-child policy for childbearing and childrearing among young adults who were themselves born under that policy. Their study will be conducted in collaboration with Southeast University and Liaoning Normal University.

Abstract

2008

National Standards of Care

“The Dragon’s Kidneys—Medical Training and the National Standards of Care in China” 

$50K

A smaller 1-year grant was awarded to the Harvard Medical School-Brigham and Women’s Hospital team of Dr. Dirk Hentschel and Dr. Joseph Bonventre for joint medical training to address China’s emerging problems of kidney disease, diabetes, and hypertension.

Abstract

Reconciling Economic Growth

“Reconciling Economic Growth and Air Pollution Control in China: An Integrated Approach” 

$121K

Michael McElroy and Chris Nielsen, executive director of the Harvard China Project, both of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, will direct a two-year project in collaboration with Tsinghua to build scholarly capacity—from basic science to economic modeling and public-health studies—to assess China’s policies for controlling air pollution. (Nielsen co-edited Clearing the Air: The Health and Economic Damages of Air Pollution in China, an integrated Harvard-Tsinghua analysis of the health and economic damages of air pollution in China, and the costs and benefits of policies to control it.)

Abstract

Crisis Management

“Crisis Management: Research and Executive Training in Collaboration with Tsinghua University”

$150K

Herman B. “Dutch” Leonard, who holds professorial appointments in the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) and Harvard Business School, and HKS colleagues will develop, with Tsinghua University, executive-education programs for emergency preparedness and response to crises during their 18-month project.

Abstract

Harvard Project on Disability

The Harvard Project on Disability

$160K

William Alford (HLS) and colleagues, both here and in China, will spend three years conducting research on disability issues, helping build capacity in Chinese universities, offering advice regarding legal development, and working with pertinent civic organizations for persons with disabilities (who may number some 130 million). This remains, as the proposal puts it, a “much-neglected area” of law and services.

Abstract