Call for Applications: Minority-Serving Institution Virtual Book Workshop Project 

Minority-Serving Institution Virtual Book Workshop Project | Deadline: January 14, 2022 | Apply Now!

Book workshops produce great books, but too few scholars have access to the resources needed to organize and execute one, especially scholars at Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Hispanic Serving Institutions, Asian American and Pacific Islander Serving Institutions, and Tribal Colleges and Universities. Thus, this inequity harms faculty who have dedicated their careers to teaching at Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs).

During the 2021 American Political Science Association (APSA) Annual Meeting, a new project will launch to support virtual book workshops for scholars at Minority-Serving Institutions (MSI) in the United States. The goal of the MSI Virtual Book Workshop Project is to help scholars of politics at MSIs publish great books. Workshops of expert reviewers give authors extensive feedback to improve a completed manuscript as well as insights into the publication process. Unfortunately, workshops have been too expensive for many scholars to benefit from, especially at MSIs.

Howard University and John Jay College of Criminal Justice CUNY have partnered to address this problem and open a new opportunity for a more diverse array of scholars to benefit from the insights and advice of experts in their field.

Dr. Ravi K. Perry, Chair of the Department of Political Science at Howard University said:

“The virtual book workshop fund represents an opportunity to bring political science scholars of HBCUs and other MSIs additional resources needed to continue publishing seminal scholarship that addresses the lived conditions of marginalized communities thereby increasing our body of knowledge while also creating a more expansive vision of our discipline.”

John Jay College President Karol Mason said:

 “As a Hispanic- and Minority-Serving Institution committed to diversity, equity, and justice, we are thrilled at John Jay College of Criminal Justice to partner with Howard University to support political scientists nation-wide. We hope this innovative virtual book workshop project will serve as a model for how to retain faculty at HBCUs and MSIs and address inequities in scholarly book publishing.”

Support from Leading Academic Publishers

With generous support from five leading academic publishers, Cambridge University Press, Columbia University Press, New York University Press, Oxford University Press, and Princeton University Press, as well as APSA, scholars with a completed book manuscript can apply for funding. 

Robert Dreesen, Publisher, Economics and Political Science, Cambridge University Press, an early supporter of the project, explained:  

“Of course Cambridge University Press is delighted to participate in this useful initiative, one with material benefits both for the field and for individual scholars. There never was any doubt about participation, thus the Press’s enthusiasm as one of the first publishers to commit to the project.”  

Other supporters have highlighted the close connection between their missions and the goals of the project. Niko Pfund, President of Oxford University Press USA and Global Academic Books Publisher, shared:  

“We’re proud to participate in this initiative, given the way its mission of expanded access dovetails with our own.”

Columbia University Press Editorial Director, Eric Schwartz, said:

“We are proud to participate in the MSI project, co-led by a Columbia University Press author, which so directly expresses the values we share with our fellow participants from the university press community.”

Bridget Flannery-McCoy Senior Editor in Politics at Princeton University Press said:  

“As publishers we see just how valuable workshops are in improving manuscripts, and we are honored to partner with the MSI Virtual Book Workshop to make these available to scholars at minority-serving institutions. The field and the reading public at large will benefit greatly from amplifying these voices.”

Integral to the success of the project is the support of APSA staff who have helped design the online application infrastructure, marketing, and outreach components of the project.

APSA Executive Director, Steve Smith shared:

“Our enthusiasm for this project reflects the work of the Diversity and Inclusion Department and the Marketing and Communications Department as well as the association’s overarching commitment to the success of MSI faculty. This project compliments the very important work that we are doing to strengthen connections with political scientists at MSIs.”

Information & How to Apply

The award is open to scholars who have completed a book manuscript primarily focused on the study of politics and who currently work at a US-based Minority Serving Institution are eligible for the award. Junior and senior scholars in a variety of departments, not just political science, are encouraged to apply. This award is also not limited to scholars in a tenure track position.

Howard University professor, Dr. Niambi Carter, and John Jay College professor, Dr. Heath Brown, co-direct the project and have organized a review board to select deserving manuscripts for the competitive awards across fields of study. The board includes: Sekou Franklin (Middle Tennessee State University), Jane Junn (USC), Cyril Ghosh (Wagner College), Heath Fogg Davis (Temple University), Lilly Goren (Carroll University), and Michael Miller (Social Science Research Council). 

Carter and Brown also have begun to assemble a list of scholars and editors interested in serving as reviewers for the first round of workshops starting in June 2021.

Awardees will receive support to organize a virtual book workshop in summer 2022. A $2,000 award will be used to provide four expert reviewers an honorarium for their participation in the workshops.  

For more information and to apply, see the application here.

Questions about the MSI Virtual Book Workshop should be directed to Dr. Heath Brown or Dr. Niambi Carter. 

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