Niagara Travel Grant Program 2014

Niagara Grant Invitation Letter

Grant Application Form

Sample Itinerary



1. Program Description

Founded in 1997, Niagara Foundation (NF) is a Chicago-based non-profit organization serving Midwest people with its 22 branches in 9 different states. The primary mission of NF is to promote global fellowship and inter-cultural dialogue among people of diverse backgrounds. NF also puts great emphasis on strengthening dialogue between Turkish and American people through its various programs.

To this end, NF has been running a summer travel grant program to Turkey for faculty and researchers.  This travel grant program is for supporting specialized professional trips to Turkey that are geared for creating research opportunities for participating faculty in social sciences. The program aims to attract academicians who have research interests on economic, political, social and cultural issues in Turkey as well as on the US-Turkey relations from the perspective of politics, dialogue, religion, sociology, and history. Faculties and researchers who are studying and/or teaching on these topics will be considered for this grant program.

Niagara Foundation has organized several such trips since 2003 and supported many faculty members to participate in these trips from several universities in Missouri and Illinois including Washington University in St. Louis, University of Missouri Columbia, St. Louis University, University of Missouri St. Louis, Southern Illinois University and Lindenwood University.

2. Grant Information

The travel grant covers all travel expenses while traveling within Turkey for 10 days including accommodation, travel and meal expenses. NF partners with Bosphorus-Atlantic Association of Cultural Cooperation & Friendship (BAKIAD), a non-profit organization in Istanbul, Turkey, and some of the universities, which sponsor the trip costs in Turkey. BAKIAD finds local sponsors for hosting the guests at the decent hotels or guesthouses, providing guides and arranging meals. These donors believe in the need for dialog, understanding and cross-cultural exchange. In this way, the attendants will also have the opportunity to meet and interact with local people and families. Note that NF receives no financial aid or any other type of grant from the Turkish government or any other government for funding these trips. No monies are received from any political parties in the United States or Turkey.

As part of the grant, some universities/institutions in Turkey host the participating faculty for talks, panels, workshops, luncheons, etc., creating opportunities for faculty engagement, collaboration and research. The university and event selections are done by NF based on the expertise of the participants and their early feedback.

The grant does not include the round trip fare from US to Istanbul (varies from $800 to $1300 per person depending on the time of the year). Each attendant is responsible for this cost in addition to a participation fee of $300 per person.

Prior to trip, a half-day orientation/information workshop is held for awardees. This workshop will be open to anyone (in addition to awardees) who would like to get more information about the trip.

For more information about the trip, sample itinerary and sponsors please visit or review the attached fliers.

Up to 10 people are expected to be supported this year.

3. Eligibility Requirements

The travel grant program is open to post-docs and faculty at any level in Social Sciences and Humanities. However, priority will be given to junior faculty/post-docs who are within their first 3 years of appointments. Exceptional candidates at the “PhD candidate or ABD’’ level will also be considered. We seek people whose research/teaching focus on but not limited to the following issues.

US-Turkey relations

Middle-East Politics


Turkey and EU

Intercultural/Interfaith Dialogue, Multi-Culturalism

History of Turkey and/or Middle-East

Social Movements in Turkey and Middle-East

Democratization in Turkey and Middle-East

4. Application

Please submit a 1000 word abstract along with your current resume. The abstract should address the following:

– Why would you like to attend this trip?

– Upon returning from the trip, how will you incorporate the experience in your research or teaching (e.g., developing new interest with regard to Turkey or Islam in your research, including new topics in your syllabus if teaching any of the topics mentioned in Section 1.)

– Upon returning from the trip, how would you share this unique experience with your community (e.g., giving a talk at the university, church, writing an article in a local newspaper)?

5. Reporting Requirements

Each awardee is expected to submit two items upon returning from the trip:

1- A reflection paper (3-7 pages) presenting the reflections of the awardee about the trip within 30 days of returning.

2- A report (2-3 pages) that summarizes the outcomes of the trip and the activities completed (e.g., how did you benefit from this experience in terms of research or teaching) within 3 months of returning.

The papers should be in 11pts font and in pdf format.

6. Deadlines & Contact

Deadline for submission: 3/24/2014

Notification: 3/30/2014

7. Time Period of Travel

Please indicate your available or agreed dates*:

  1. May 20 – 30, 2014
  2. June 17 – 27, 2014
  3. Both of the dates will work

Contact Person:

Ali Durhan

Executive Director

Niagara Foundation Missouri

Send email inquiries to [email protected]

*There will be only one trip on one of these dates. We will decide the date according to the attendance of the academicians.


[nggallery id=46]

The views and opinions expressed on The Falls are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Niagara Foundation, its staff, other authors, members, partners, or sponsors.