Grant Funding

The Commons has thus far been wholly dependent upon grant-based funding for its development and maintenance. Information about the grants we have received is below.

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s Public Knowledge program (previously Scholarly Communication) has been a crucial supporter of the Commons since its infancy, and is currently supporting the implementation of a new sustainability model for the network. Grant support provided by the Mellon Foundation includes:

  • MLA Commons prototyping grant, April 2012–May 2013, $83,000
  • Humanities Commons planning grant, August 2013–March 2014, $40,250
  • Humanities Commons pilot grant, July 2015–June 2017, $225,000
  • Humanities Commons implementation and sustainability grant, July 2017–September 2018, $310,000
  • Expanding the Commons, change capital grant, October 2021–September 2026, $971,000

National Endowment for the Humanities

Logo of the National Endowment for the Humanities

The National Endowment for the Humanities has been a key supporter of the Commons, and in particular of the development and expansion of its associated repository, CORE. An Infrastructure and Capacity Building Challenge Grant has laid the current groundwork for our new sustainability model.

  • Humanities CORE, Digital Humanities Start-Up Grant, May 2014–May 2015, $60,000 (with Columbia University Libraries)
  • Humanities CORE, Digital Humanities Implementation Grant, September 2016–August 2020, $300,000 (with Columbia University Libraries)
  • Humanities Commons, Infrastructure and Capacity Building Challenge Grant, May 2020–April 2027, $500,000 (requires 3:1 fundraising match for release of funds)

Nonprofit Finance Fund

The Nonprofit Finance Fund is supporting the Commons as part of a cohort of digital humanities organizations seeking financial sustainability. This grant includes both operating funds and in-kind financial advising.

  • Humanities Commons, Building Financial Resilience in the Digital Humanities Initiative, July 2020–December 2022, $20,000 plus in-kind support

Samuel H. Kress Foundation

The Samuel H. Kress Foundation has supported the Commons in our efforts to expand platform usage among scholars and organizations in art and art history.

  • Expanding Open Networking in Art and Art History, May 2020–April 2023, $35,000

JROST Rapid Response Fund

The JROST Rapid Response Fund, a community effort of Invest in Open Infrastructure, made a small grant to the Commons in support of our work to remediate the technical debt the network had accrued.

  • Humanities Commons, December 2020–December 2021, $5,000

Open Society Foundations

The Open Society Foundations supported the Commons as we began raising the match required for our NEH Infrastructure and Capacity Building Grant.

  • Humanities Commons, Information Program Grant, October 2020–September 2021, $50,000

Michigan State University, Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation

The MSU Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation supported the Commons with a Discretionary Funding Initiative Award, designed to support projects that have come close to being awarded significant federal funding as they strengthen their positions for reapplication. This DFI grant enabled the Commons to do some necessary work in preparation for re-application for the NEH Infrastructure and Capacity Building Challenge Grant.

  • Humanities Commons, Discretionary Funding Initiative Award, December 2018–June 2020, $46,780