The Nahrein Network


Mini Grants Awards

Grants of up to £5,000 for small research projects that have the potential to deliver cultural, economic, environmental, or social benefit for Iraq/KRI. Deadline: 15 May 2024

Each year we aim to fund up to 5 projects of up to 12 months duration, led by Iraqi researchers. We particularly encourage projects led by women, and warmly welcome applications to build on research previously funded by the Nahrein Network. 

Who can apply? 

You can apply if you: 

  • are an Iraqi researcher employed by, or having another formal affiliation with, a university, registered cultural heritage organisation, research-capable NGO or community group in Iraq (including KRI); 
  • normally live and work in Iraq, with academic and/or professional expertise in history, heritage and/or related arts, humanities and social sciences disciplines;
  • are not a current member of Nahrein Network’s Management Committee.

What does the scheme fund?

Applications must:

  • address at least one of the Nahrein Network’s six research aims;
  • propose at least one realistic output that addresses one or more of the Nahrein Network’s six research aims;
  • declare if you are applying to, or already have grants from, other funding sources for related work.

Examples of eligible activities for this scheme include:

  • a small research project, either as a stand-alone project or as a pilot for a larger application;
  • follow-on research or publication activities from a previous Nahrein Network-funded project or Visiting Scholarship;
  • research with an international institution or individual expert;
  • collaboration with colleagues within Iraq, e.g., to set up a research network or programme;
  • proposals for other research-related activity.

This scheme does NOT cover:

  • projects to do with archaeological fieldwork, documentation or conservation of heritage sites, buildings or collections;
  • projects that work directly with children; 
  • projects that do not involve research (creating new knowledge);
  • funding solely to support your studies or training;
  • funding solely to attend or put on a conference.

Application and Selection Process 

Complete the online application form. We ask you to tell us about yourself, your proposed project and its timetable for completion, and why the Nahrein Network should fund your research. Only projects with clear research outputs will be short-listed for consideration.

In addition, you should provide:

  • an outline budget with a breakdown of costs. The scheme pays for direct costs on the project, including staff salaries, travel and subsistence, equipment, and reasonable publication and communication costs.
  • contact details of any proposed collaborators or hosts (who will be contacted by the Nahrein Network for confirmation of their support).

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How To Apply

Fill out the Mini-Grants Scheme form.

We recommend that you: 

  • Copy the questions into a Word document and use that to draft and prepare your replies.
  • Write at least a paragraph in answer to questions 14–19. Long answers help the assessors understand your ideas more clearly. If you write one-sentence answers your project will not be shortlisted. 
  • Once done, copy-paste your replies into the required fields and submit the form. This way, you can edit offline and not fear losing your data due to internet issues. 

Please send queries to nahrein@ucl.ac.uk  at least two weeks ahead of the submission deadline. 

All eligible applications will be assessed by members of the Nahrein Network’s core team according to the following criteria:  

  • the quality, value and urgency of the proposed research;  
  • the qualifications and experience of the applicant(s) to manage and conduct this research; 
  • the likely long-term sustainability and/or impact of the project; 
  • the degree to which the project meets the aims and addresses the themes of the Nahrein Network. 
  • Formal approval from your research institution or university.

Up to 5 projects will be selected, subject to passing the UCL initial risk assessment process. You will be required to sign a contract committing to deliver your project, and to abide by our terms and conditions.

Funding will be paid, via Stars Orbit in Jordan, in two equal instalments at the start and midpoint of the project.


If you are awarded this funding you, will be required to:

  • write a project report and financial statement, including submission of  detailed receipts, at the midpoint and end of the work;
  • and engage with the Nahrein Network’s social media officer to publicise your methods and findings appropriately;
  • acknowledge the Nahrein Network as your source of funding.

Equal Opportunities  

The Nahrein Network is committed to eliminating unlawful discrimination and promoting equality of opportunity and good relations across and between the defined equalities groups in all of their relevant functions.  

Accordingly, no eligible funding applicant or external stakeholder should receive less favourable treatment on the grounds of gender, marital status, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, race, colour, nationality, ethnicity or national origins, religion or similar philosophical belief, spent criminal conviction, age or disability.  

Equally, all proposals will be assessed on equal terms, regardless of the sex, age and/or ethnicity of the applicant. Proposals will, therefore, be assessed and graded on their merits, in accordance with the criteria and the aims and objectives set for each call for funding.