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2016 RGK-ARNOVA President's Award Application
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The RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service at the University of Texas at Austin and the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action [ARNOVA] offer this annual award to encourage innovative, foundational research in the field of nonprofit and philanthropic studies.  This is not a typical research grant.  The RGK-ARNOVA President’s Award provides a $10,000 prize to a member of ARNOVA to support basic research and theory building in the field of philanthropic, nonprofit and voluntary action studies.  We are looking for new, creative work, and especially encourage projects that incorporate and apply insights, frameworks and theories from the social sciences to the study of nonprofit organizations, philanthropy and volunteerism.  One grant is made each year, assuming a worthy proposal is submitted.   


The Award recipient will be expected to produce a working paper that can be made available on the RGK Center website ( when finished, and a presentation of that paper that can be made at the ARNOVA Conference the year it is completed. The recipient will be expected to produce the final paper within 12 months of the announcement of the Award.  



  • Proposals should not exceed 5 pages in length. They should describe the concepts, issues or problem to be explored, and the theoretical framework for that exploration. The author may attach a summary of literature that their project will draw on, and include a letter describing the author’s background and experience and how that prepares them to undertake this research successfully.  A brief budget may be submitted that shows how the awards funds will be used, but a budget is not necessary. (This is an award, not a grant.)  

  • The proposal narrative should describe the character of and approach to the research to be pursued.  If it involves data gathering and analysis, the proposal should describe data sources the project will use (or develop), and the methodologies to be employed in collection and analysis.  It should explain the expected significance of this research, and how it will advance a broader and deeper understanding of one or more of the important elements of philanthropy, nonprofits, voluntary action or civil society.  All proposals must be submitted electronically. Proposals must be submitted as PDF files.

  • A copy of the proposer’s Vita should be attached. An Awards Committee composed of former Presidents of ARNOVA will review applications and make the selection.  
  • Award recipient is required to attend the ARNOVA Awards Luncheon on Friday, November 18, 2016 at the Hyatt Capitol Hill in Washington DC.  They will also serve on a panel to present their award winning research as part of a mini-plenary on the same day.


Only applicants who are ARNOVA members and pre-registered for the Annual Conference are eligible to receive this award. If you are not a member, JOIN NOW!


All proposals must be submitted electronically in a single PDF formatted file to assure their integrity. Word documents will not be considered.

An Awards Committee composed of former Presidents of ARNOVA will review applications and make the selection.

SUBMISSION OPEN: February 29, 2016
DEADLINE: May 17, 2016


If you have questions, send us an e-mail.

Submissions closed

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ARNOVA is a leading interdisciplinary community of people dedicated to fostering through research and education, the creation, application and dissemination of knowledge on nonprofit organizations, philanthropy, civil society and voluntary action.

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