Grand Research Challenge: “The Global Midwest”

This project links the consortial partners in a common commitment to research and dialogue around a set of important, mutually articulated problems of broad public interest. Its principal long-term objectives are to reveal and rethink the Midwest as a major force in this century’s global economy and culture for scholars, policy-makers, government officials, social scientists, and an enlightened public and to demonstrate how the “applied humanities,” through collaborations of artists, scholars in the humanities, and scientists (both social and natural), can contribute to the work on grand intellectual challenges. The initiative may also support Midwest scholars pursuing research questions at a global scale across multiple eras. Research teams must include scholars from at least two consortial institutions. In its design, this pilot project resonates with two previous Mellon Foundation grants to the international Consortium of Humanities Centers and Institutes that also organize interdisciplinary research projects around major issues and mobilize teams of scholars in multiple institutions to work on specific aspects of the problems.