Collaborative Arts & Museums Program 2023

Request for Proposals

This Collaborative Arts & Museums Program Request for Proposals is co-sponsored by the Collaborative Arts Research Initiative (CARI) and University of Alabama Museums to encourage public programs, exhibits, and use of museum collections. Full-time faculty* from all colleges and disciplines are encouraged to work with representatives from UA Museums to form collaborative teams. These teams must consist of 1) at least one UA faculty member as a PI or Co-PI, 2) a UA Museums representative as a PI or Co-PI, and 3) at least one PI or Co-PI with a primary area of scholarship or practice in design, fine art, the performing arts, or creative writing. The arts collaborator may be a UA faculty member (in which case one person satisfies requirements #1 and #3), arts faculty at another academic institution, or an artist outside of academia. In all cases, the artist’s full integration into the research is paramount.

CARI and UA Museums welcome applications on a rolling basis. The program’s initial funding pool is $10,000 and from it we expect to make 1-2 awards, with the potential to support additional projects in the future. Funding will be considered for a wide range of expenses, including travel, equipment, supplies, or a course release (if available). The period of performance should be 24 months and IRB approval must be obtained by the investigators before funding can be dispersed. Funds will be administered through UA Museums.

Proposed projects must result in an exhibit or public program. Additional outcomes might include conference presentations, publications, or applications for external funding. Priority will be given to proposals that clearly demonstrate the integration of disciplines to create innovative processes and discover new modes of inquiry. 

Review Process 

A review committee consisting of representatives of UA Museums, representatives of CARI, and additional ad hoc reviewers as needed in the specific content areas of the application, will focus heavily on the expertise of the individual investigators, the depth of the proposed collaboration, the probability of completion/success, and the potential impact of the research plan.  


Applications for funding should be prepared and submitted as an electronic document and should include the following sections: 

I)    Cover page with the title of the proposed project, the names, academic ranks, and departmental affiliations of the Co-PIs, and their signatures. This page must also include the signatures of the chairs or directors of the applicant Co-PIs’ departments, signifying approval of the proposal. The signature of Dr. William Bomar, Executive Director, University of Alabama Museums, must be included (page 1 of the proposal). 

2)       Specific Aims of the proposed work – This should not exceed 500 words and should be suitable for publication or dissemination to the general public. The Specific Aims page should include a brief rationale for the proposal and the role that arts integration will play in the process. This page should be single-spaced in not less than 12-pitch type. (on p. 2 of the proposal) 

3)        Proposal Narrative – The proposed work should be described (single-spaced; not less than 12-point type with 1-inch margins; not to exceed 4 pages; this page limit does not include the Specific Aims page).  Keep in mind that the proposal will be evaluated by peers who may not have detailed knowledge of the area; therefore, the proposed work should be described in sufficient detail for faculty colleagues to evaluate its impact, but still be at a level general enough for the non-specialist to appreciate. The proposal should address the following areas: 

  1. Outcomes that are the focus of the project and how the project will engage UAMuseums, museum audiences, arts, and the local community. 
  2. The expertise of the PIs and the investigative team in addressing the research question. 
  3. The methods and planned outcomes, including how arts research is a necessary and fully-integrated component.    

4)  Literature Review – Provide a short (1-page, single-spaced) literature review that contextualizes the work you are proposing in relation to previous relevant research, creative performance, or community and cultural engagement.[1] This may include sources not cited in the narrative.

5)    Optional:  An additional 1-2 single-spaced pages describing how the project will fit into the larger timeline of submitting a proposal for a federal/foundation research grant. The funding source will be identified (e.g. a specific national agency, foundation, etc.), along with relevant Program Announcements (PA), Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA), or Requests for Applications (RFA). The timeline will include the date of a planned grant submission.   

Budget and Budget Justification 


  •     a well-specified budget- not to exceed $10,000; smaller project budgets encouraged  
  •     a clear budget justification 
  •     a brief timeline  showing how all elements of the proposed work will be completed within 24 months

This section can be up to 2 pages single-spaced. 


A Biosketch or CV is required for each investigator.  


Submissions will be accepted up until July 1, 2024 while funding is available. 

To discuss a potential collaboration with UA Museums, contact Madeline Burkhardt (, Museums Research Outreach Coordinator. 

Submissions and questions about the application process should be emailed to CARI Assistant Director, Shannon McCue ( 

Required Deliverables 

1) The funded projects are expected to produce an exhibition and/or public program. Subsequent outcomes may include a submission of a funding request to an external agency or foundation, publication, or conference presentation. 

2) A final report is due 90 days after the end of the award period describing the results of the project and including information on submitted applications for external funding (not to exceed 3 pages).   

*Tenure-track, FTTI, and NTRC faculty. Faculty currently receiving funding as CARI Fellows or Joint Pilot for Arts Research recipients are not eligible.