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Fellowships of the Wilson Institute


Postdoctoral Fellowships and Support 

Every year, the Wilson Institute offers postdoctoral fellowships and assistant professorships to recent PhDs whose work focus on Canada within a transnational framework. These fellowships last two years with each term starting on July 1. Postdoctoral fellows pursue their own research and publishing agenda, teach a one-term course per year, and help develop the research mission of the Institute. Along with a generous stipend and benefits, each fellow receives up to $5,000 for research or publication expenses. Assistant Professors are awarded to new scholars who show early promise as excellent university teachers and researchers. Wilson Professors teach a number of courses including level 2 undergraduate courses in Canadian history, level 3 courses on Canada in a global, perspective, and level 4 seminars on selected topics in Canadian history. They also teach our marquee undergraduate course, “Making History,” which challenges students to participate actively in a central debate in Canadian history. Along with a generous stipend and benefits, each professor also receives up to $5,000 for research or publication expenses. Please keep an eye on our website for future job postings

The Wilson Institute also hosts non-stipendiary visiting scholars. Visiting scholars (Canadian or foreign) capable of providing their own financial support (e.g. SSHRC or Banting postdoctoral fellowships) are granted access to the Wilson Institute’s locales, McMaster’s libraries and archives, and, if space permits, a workspace. Visiting scholars are also encouraged to take part in our activities and organize events of their own.

Graduate Grants and Support 

The Wilson Institute also awards several grants to McMaster graduate students, which come in four forms.

1. Small grants, of up to $600, are made available to McMaster students whose work bears upon Canadian issues — both at the masters and Ph.D. levels— who wish to accomplish very specific research goals (i.e., visit a specific archives.) Qualified graduate students may apply for two such grants in the course of their graduate training at McMaster. Receipts for all expenses must be submitted to the Department of History’s Administrative Coordinator within a month after the conference or research trip. A 1,000 word proposal must be submitted to the Wilson Institute, explaining the student’s research and the purpose of the research trip. 

2. The Institute is also prepared to fund specific research trips by McMaster students, generally those in the field of history, again with a limit of one grant per student per year. Proposals outlining the funds requested must be received three months ahead of the proposed research trip. Receipts for all expenses, up to a limit of $800, must be submitted to the Department of History’s Administrative Coordinator within a month after the trip.

3. More substantial grants, of up to $2000, may be made from time to time to in-coming graduate students as an inducement to their coming to McMaster. Such grants are made at the discretion of the director, acting on the advice of the graduate co-ordinator.

4. In addition, the Wilson Institute offers fifth-year funding for McMaster doctoral students, in the form of covering much or all of their tuition costs. To apply for this program, students should submit a two-page letter of application outlining the thesis chapters and a one-page timeline detailing what remains to be completed and how they expect to meet the goal of completion. They should also arrange for their supervisor to submit a one-page letter commenting on the feasibility of their timeline. Involvement in the Wilson Institute’s program of activities will be considered. The amount of the award will vary according to the number of applicants in any given year, but doctoral candidates whose theses bear upon Canadian topics who submit a strong application to the director of the Wilson Institute may be assured that their requests for fifth-year financial support will be viewed sympathetically, with the overriding objective of having students complete their doctoral theses in timely fashion and in good order. Students that work on non-Canadian topics, but play an active role in the Wilson Institute’s program of activities, are also encouraged to apply. Each recipient will present a chapter of their dissertation for our Brown Bag series. Deadline for applications: June 1, 2019. 

5. The Corsini Fellowship in Canadian History

The Corsini Fellowship in Canadian History

This two-month fellowship is geared towards graduate students. Any candidate whose project deals with Canadian history will be considered, but projects dependent on local archives and libraries are particularly welcome. McMaster and southern Ontario are home to numerous archives, including the Archives of Ontario, Bertrand Russell Collection (here at McMaster), and numerous other regional historical societies. Each fellow will receive a little over $5,000, a work space at the L.R. Wilson Institute, and access to McMaster’s libraries and archival collections. Each fellow is expected to be in residence at the Wilson Institute during the two-month fellowship in order to participate in our program of activities and engage with our students and faculty. The fellowship will start on 1 July 2019 and will end on 30 August 2019. Corsini Fellows are expected to produce a blog post based on their research and present a paper at a Wilson Institute public event. In order to be considered for this fellowship, please send a CV, a cover letter (which includes a project description) and a letter of support from your dissertation supervisor to Applications must arrive by 30 May 2019. Two candidates will be selected.


2019: Julia Pyryeskina, York University, and Matthieu Caron, University of Toronto.

2018: Kassandra Luciuk, University of Toronto. Dissertation: “Contracting Legitimacy: Nation building, ethnic identity, and the politics of citizenship in Cold War Canada, 1940-1991.”

6. Viv Nelles Graduate Award

The Wilson Institute may award one major travel grant per year (up to $10,000) to an outstanding Ph.D. student in the second or third  year whose project fits the vision of the Wilson Institute of placing Canadian history in a broader world context. Such a grant may be held only once during the student’s doctoral training at McMaster. In order to be considered for this major award,  candidates must submit an application package  that includes:

*an up-to-date curriculum vitae
*a five-page outline of the current research project, explaining how it fits the 
vision of the Wilson Institute.
*a detailed budget showing travel, accommodation, and all other costs
*a letter of reference from the supervisor(s) 
*a signed commitment to deliver a paper to the Wilson Institute based on the 
*finally, at the conclusion of the project, a full report (2-3 pages) reporting on the 

Adjudication of applications will be made by the Director of the Wilson Institute in consultation with the Graduate Director of the Department. Monies granted under this program must be spent within twelve months of receipt of the grant. All receipts must be submitted to the administrative assistant and must convey a fully-detailed and fully-itemized record of the candidate’s expenditures, within the guidelines of McMaster University. Recipients of this award are strongly urged to submit the final fruits of their doctoral research for the consideration of the editors of the Wilson Institute Book Series.


2019: Nevcihan Ozbilge Brandon Cordeiro

2018: Carly Ciufo, Dissertation: “Can Museums do Human Rights Work? Human Rights Museums and the People who Build them.”