Northwestern University-SSRC Dissertation Proposal Development Program​

Northwestern was chosen by the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) as one of five universities to bring together humanities and social science scholars in pre-doctoral research summer institutes. Faculty from across clusters, certificates, and disciplines actively guide twenty-four humanities and social science PhD students, who are in their second and third years, in designing effective research questions, methodologies, contexts, and interventions. Participants gain practical, theoretical, and writing insights from experienced faculty and other students outside their disciplines. Throughout this program, students build their professional networks and audiences, benefit from interdisciplinary mentorship, and engage in conversations that lead to innovative dissertation projects.

Dissertation Proposal Development Program

  • Up to $5,000 funding for 6-10 week summer research trip
  • Interdisciplinary faculty-led workshops: June 17-19, 2019; September 3, 2019; and September 12-15, 2019
  • Professional network-building opportunities and guidance in designing effective, interdisciplinary research questions, methodologies, contexts, and interventions

Eligibility: second or third year Humanities and qualitative Social Science doctoral students who are prepared to research and write their dissertation prospectus or research funding proposal/fellowship application in summer 2019.

For more information, contact Stephanie Brehm, PhD, at

2019 Applications are now available.

Video: Participants' describe their experiences in the DPD program

2018 DPD Report

Dissertation Proposal Development (DPD) Program Summer 2018 participants


Dissertation Proposal Development (DPD) Program Summer 2017 participants