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CSS Fellowships

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By DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

What is the Computational Social Science Fellowship?

The Computational Social Science Fellowship is designed to provide students with extra funds to conduct innovative research that applies computational techniques to social science research.

How much can you apply for?

Stipends are provided at 3 tiers. You must indicate which funding level you are applying for in your application. If you apply at the $10,000 level, you will not be considered for the $5000 level and vice versa, therefore, please apply for the level of funding that best fits your research needs. The following will be awarded:

  • 1 award of $10,000 
  • 1 award of $5,000  
  • 3 awards of $2000

What can you use the money for?

Funds can pay for software, computing, transcribing, translating, surveys, data acquisition, and other research costs.  

Data acquisition includes purchasing data sets and paying for participants (including MTurk).

Funds (at any level) cannot pay for travel, conferences, or hardware.  

To find out if your budget items are allowed, contact

Who can apply?

Stanford graduate students from the six social science departments (Sociology, Anthropology, Economics, Political Science, Communication, & Psychology), and the Graduate School of Education.

Application requirements

All application materials should be submitted using this Application Link, which will be active only during the application period. Once you apply, faculty will receive a request to complete a recommendation form, including a paragraph of support. Please let them know to expect this request.

Applications should include a 1-2 page narrative explaining a research project that applies computational methods to social science research, and a budget which can be on a 3rd page if needed.

  • Identify a faculty recommender who will advise your project and provide a brief paragraph of support. The advisor may be asked to help review proposals in June. They would be reviewing 2-4 proposals but would not be reviewing yours. Please let them know they will receive a link to complete the recommendation form once you complete your application.
  • Include a budget listing specific items or services that will be purchased with approximate prices, links to any relevant websites or references, and a brief justification of how the item will be used in your project if it is not clear from your project description.
  • Preference will be given to proposals likely to result in journal papers or conference proceedings and students who plan to seek external funding in the future; please include any information about these possibilities in the proposal.
  • Application materials must be submitted as a single pdf, with your name at the top of each page.


The deadline for proposal submission is June 1, 2020. Funding decisions will be announced on or before July 1, 2020.

If you are awarded funding

Recipients of funding must present their research in an IRiSS-sponsored poster session (date TBA). Additionally, they must report on research activity at the end of the academic year, as well as indicate progress toward publications and/or obtaining external support for the project.

Previous Projects

More information on past projects can be found at the CSS Fellows page