NSF Dynamic Language Infrastructure - NEH Documenting Endangered Languages (DLI-DEL)

Funding Agency:
National Science Foundation

This funding partnership between the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) supports projects to develop and advance knowledge concerning dynamic language infrastructure in the context of endangered human languages—languages that are both understudied and at risk of falling out of use. Made urgent by the imminent loss of roughly half of the approximately 7000 currently used languages, this effort aims to exploit advances in information technology to build computational infrastructure for endangered language research. The program supports projects that contribute to data management and archiving, and to the development of the next generation of researchers. Funding can support fieldwork and other activities relevant to the digital recording, documentation and analysis, and archiving of endangered language data, including the preparation of lexicons, grammars, text samples, and databases. Funding will be available in the form of one- to three-year senior research grants, fellowships from six to twelve months, and conference proposals. Note: a conference proposal should generally be submitted at least a year in advance of the scheduled date of the conference. For additional information about creating and submitting conference proposals, please refer to Chapter II. D.7 of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide.

Full Proposal Deadline Date:   September 15, 2020; September 15, Annually Thereafter

Submission Deadline for Senior Research Proposals, Conferences, and Fellowships Only

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

Proposals may only be submitted by the following:

  • Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) - Two- and four-year IHEs (including community colleges) accredited in, and having a campus located in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members. Special Instructions for International Branch Campuses of US IHEs: If the proposal includes funding to be provided to an international branch campus of a US institution of higher education (including through use of subawards and consultant arrangements), the proposer must explain the benefit(s) to the project of performance at the international branch campus, and justify why the project activities cannot be performed at the US campus.
  • Non-profit, non-academic organizations: Independent museums, observatories, research labs, professional societies and similar organizations in the U.S. associated with educational or research activities.
  • Unaffiliated individuals: scientists, engineers or educators in the U.S. who are U.S. citizens and foreign nationals who have been living in the United States or its jurisdictions for at least the three years prior to the proposal deadline are eligible to apply for fellowships.
  • Tribal organizations and other American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian serving organizations.

For SENIOR RESEARCH GRANTS: There are no program-specific restrictions or limits.

For FELLOWSHIPS: U.S. citizens are eligible to apply for fellowships. Foreign nationals who have been living in the United States or its jurisdictions for at least the three years prior to the proposal deadline are also eligible to apply for fellowships. Applicants can be affiliated with an institution or be an unaffiliated individual. Applicants need not have advanced degrees. Individuals currently enrolled in a degree-granting program are ineligible to apply. Applicants who have satisfied all the requirements for a degree and are awaiting its conferral are eligible for DLI-DEL Fellowships; but such applicants need a letter from their department chair or the dean of the degree-conferring school attesting to the applicant's status as of the DLI-DEL deadline listed in this solicitation. This signed letter should be uploaded in FastLane as a "Supplementary Document."

Limit on Number of Proposals per PI or Co-PI:

SENIOR RESEARCH GRANTS and FELLOWSHIPS: A maximum of one proposal per cycle per prospective PI or co-PI for senior research grants and fellowships.

CONFERENCE GRANTS: A maximum of one proposal per cycle per prospective PI or co-PI for conference proposals.



Amount Description

Award Size and Duration

Senior Research Projects: Approximately 12-25 Standard or Continuing Grants ranging from $12,000 to $150,000 per year for one to three years. Collaborative projects cannot exceed $150,000 total per year for one to three years.

Fellowships: Up to 5, $5,000 per month for awards lasting from six to twelve months; the maximum stipend is $60,000 for a twelve-month tenure period.

Funding Type





Arts & Humanities
Engineering and Physical Sciences
Social Sciences

External Deadline

September 15, 2020