2020 Call for Applications: Russell Sage Foundation Visiting Journalist Fellowships

Jan 31, 2020 • Views -

Sponsored by the Russell Sage Foundation

There is a long, rich history of journalists writing and reporting compellingly about topics related to the Russell Sage Foundation’s (RSF) mission to “improve the social and living conditions in the United States.” The growth of economic inequality and its consequences, inequities in educational achievement and attainment, the impact of modern immigration, and recent racial tensions over urban policing are all examples of topics addressed by journalists that are central to RSF programs, and which have been the subject of study by RSF scholars and grantees. In conducting original research on a wide range of social, political, and economic conditions and presenting those findings to the public, journalists are critical to our understanding of Americans’ lives and lived experiences.

Because journalists report on issues of relevance to RSF, the Foundation has established a Visiting Journalist Fellowship that has two goals. First, the fellowship can fill a need that journalism’s own institutions are not set up to fulfill—that is, to provide journalists the time and resources needed to carry out an original project.

Second, the fellowship is an opportunity for journalists to carry out their projects while interacting with resident visiting scholars who might help inform the development of these projects. We expect to foster relationships between social scientists and journalists interested in topics related to the Foundation’s core programs through interactions with RSF staff, scholars and trustees. These interactions will help provide access to the most recent social science research and policy analysis on the journalist’s topic and to help put their specific reporting into broader context.

The Visiting Journalist Fellowship

RSF will pay visiting journalists a stipend of $8,000 per month for full-time visits of up to three months (maximum stipend of $24,000 per individual fellowship; provided space is available, selected fellows may opt to stay up to four months with a stipend of $6,000/month). Fellows are provided with an office at the Foundation, computers and software, library access, and limited research assistance. Applicants who reside outside of the greater New York City area may be provided with a partially-subsidized apartment near RSF, if available.

This residential fellowship requires significant Foundation resources and journalists are expected to fully engage in the intellectual life of RSF. For that reason, they are expected to be in their office at least 75 percent of the days that the Foundation is open.


Applicants should be journalists with a minimum of 5-7 years of experience who write or report on social, economic, or political conditions in the United States.

Application Deadline

May 1st, 2020 for visits between September 2020 and June 2021.

If you have questions about the program or the application process, please contact Program Director James Wilson at programs@rsage.org.

Not ready to apply this year? Bookmark the Russell Sage Foundation Fellowship to your ProFellow account!

© Victoria Johnson 2020, all rights reserved.

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