Democracy Doctoral Fellowships

The Ash Center awards two dissertation research fellowships to Harvard Kennedy School Ph.D. candidates or other Harvard University students in related fields. The aim of this fellowship is to support well-defined doctoral work from Harvard University students focused on innovations in public participation and political participation in non-democracies.

About the fellowship

Pre-doctoral fellows join the Ash Center’s academic community and participate in the Democracy Fellows weekly seminar. The fellowship affords doctoral candidates the time and space to work on completing their dissertations without the obligation of teaching at a critical time in their program. For more information about the Democracy Fellowships, see our Five-Year Retrospective.


Doctoral dissertation topics should fall within the parameters of the Center’s current focus on innovations in public participation and political participation in democracies or non-democracies. Candidates should have an excellent academic record and well-defined research objectives. Preference will be given to applicants whose projects have progressed beyond the conceptual stages of the research.


Fellows will receive a stipend of $30,000 annually and shared work space at the Ash Center.

How to Apply

The application for academic year 2019 - 2020 will be available here next summer and will be due by November 1, 2018. With questions please contact Natalia Chavez, Program Assistant for Democratic Governance.
Harvard is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation or any other characteristic protected by law.

Current Democracy Doctoral Fellows:

Charles Petersen, PhD candidate in American Studies at Harvard University
Alice Xu, PhD candidate in the Department of Government at Harvard University