SOCIOLOGY PROGRAM - Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Awards
The Sociology Program supports basic research on all forms of human social organization -- societies, institutions, groups and demography -- and processes of individual and institutional change. The Program encourages theoretically focused empirical investigations aimed at improving the explanation of fundamental social processes. Included is research on organizations and organizational behavior, population dynamics, social movements, social groups, labor force participation, stratification and mobility, family, social networks, socialization, gender roles, and the sociology of science and technology. The Program supports both original data collections and secondary data analysis that use the full range of quantitative and qualitative methodological tools. Theoretically grounded projects that offer methodological innovations and improvements for data collection and analysis are also welcomed.
As part of its effort to encourage and support projects that explicitly integrate education and basic research, the Sociology Program provides support to improve the conduct of doctoral dissertation projects undertaken by doctoral students enrolled in U.S. universities when the dissertation research is conducted in a scientifically sound manner and it offers strong potential for enhancing more general scientific knowledge. The Sociology Program funds doctoral dissertation research to defray direct costs associated with conducting research, for example, dataset acquisition, additional statistical or methodological training, meeting with scholars associated with original datasets, and fieldwork away from the student's home campus. Projects are evaluated using the two Foundation-wide criteria, intrinsic merit and broader impacts. In assessing the intrinsic merit of proposed research, four components are key to securing support from the Sociology Program: (1) the issues investigated must be theoretically grounded; (2) the research should be based on empirical observation or be subject to empirical validation or illustration; (3) the research design must be appropriate to the questions asked; and (4) the proposed research must advance our understanding of social processes, structures and methods.