Eligible AMICAL member categories
The primary beneficiary must be a staff or faculty member at a Full or Affiliate AMICAL member institution.
There are three categories of Small Grant that can be requested:
- Professional Development (externally organized training and events)
- Staff Exchanges/Consultation (site visits by AMICAL peers or external experts)
- Projects (course-integrated projects, or initiatives with some level of campus-wide reach, related to information/digital literacies or digital liberal arts)
The normal budget limit is €4,000.
- Budgets of €500 or less are reviewed as Micro-grants (see special conditions for Micro-grants b)
- Budgets exceeding €4,000 may be considered in exceptional cases:
- The activity must be convincingly argued as
- locally transformative (fundamentally new/changed services, resources, teaching practices, etc.)
- and/or having impact across multiple AMICAL institutions.
- The applicant should discuss their idea with the AMICAL Director before submitting the application, for authorization to propose an over-limit budget.
Types of activity and expenses that can be covered
The Small Grants program aims to fund smaller, member-initiated activities that support AMICAL’s mission, in particular in the following priority areas:
- Strengthening innovative & effective leadership among librarians and technologists, in light of their changing and collaborative roles within evolving liberal arts institutions
- Raising the effectiveness of members’ programs for information and digital literacies
- Helping members to develop locally grounded and collaborative forms of digital liberal arts
Within the scope defined by those areas, we are interested in supporting projects and initiatives – including training or consulting in support of an initiative – at all different stages of institutional support:
- Initiatives that already have local administrative support but need financial support to get started or to move to a new level
- Initiatives that need to demonstrate viability and value before they can acquire local administrative support
- Initiatives that are experimental or exploratory in nature, which may or may not have a chance of winning institutional support but which are valuable for encouraging innovation and out-of-the-box thinking.
Small Grants can support initiatives of individual AMICAL colleagues, either from a single member institution or from a small number of member institutions in partnership. Larger initiatives, for example workshops open to colleagues from all AMICAL institutions, should be proposed to the Coordinating Committee as an AMICAL-sponsored event or project, not through the Small Grants program. Small Grants cannot be used to support participation in the AMICAL Conference or other AMICAL-sponsored events, which have their own procedures for requesting support.
Guidelines specific to Professional Development and Staff Exchanges/Consultation
- Types of activity:
- Participation of individual or team in a conference, workshop, training, exchange with another AMICAL institution, etc.
- Bringing an external expert to campus for training, workshops, consulting, etc.
- Costs that can be covered:
- Essential transportation costs (e.g. airfare, transportation to/from airport, local transportation if required for reasons of safety)
- Visa fees
- Event/course registration
- Training/consulting fees
- Hotel accommodations
Guidelines specific to Projects
- Types of project (non-exhaustive, and may also be a combination of these):
- Digital project integrated into a humanities course, or an interdisciplinary course in a liberal arts curricular framework. (Special priority is given to projects that help develop locally grounded forms of digital liberal arts, combining digital methods with humanistic inquiry in teaching, scholarship, or the creation of resources for learning and research.)
- Initiative supporting campus-wide development of digital pedagogy, digital scholarship or information/digital literacies
- Costs that can be covered:
- Funding may be requested for any resources (software, hardware, licenses, materials, student labor, training/consulting in support of the project, etc.) that are essential to the project, with the exceptions listed under “Expenses that cannot be covered”.
- Special conditions for the purchase of specialized hardware:
- Specialized hardware may be purchased as part of a Small Grants project, but in such cases, the application should state clearly what will happen with the hardware after the conclusion of the project. In general, any such equipment should either be used for a similar local project, or donated to another AMICAL institution for a project with goals similar to the funded project.
Expenses that cannot be covered
The following restrictions are partly to ensure lean applications that will allow AMICAL to fund a greater number of projects, and partly to require at least a basic level of cost sharing on the part of the applicant or their institution:
- Non-essential travel costs (non-economy fares, local transportation during an event, additional costs due to travel outside of event dates, etc.)
- Hardware that is commonly provisioned across college/university campuses (e.g. computers, monitors, headsets, etc.).
Any Small Grant with a budget of €500 or less will automatically be reviewed as a Micro-grant. To limit the administrative overhead added by numerous smaller grants, certain s conditions apply to Micro-grants.
Advantages of micro-grants
Micro-grants are easier to approve as they don’t require review by full committee and can be approved outside of the normal application cycles. They are perfect for online training and smaller events that may allow you to familiarize yourself with a new area (e.g. digital humanities) before you apply for a more in-depth and focused training program, or launch into a related project.
Micro-grant budgets must not exceed €500.
Restrictions on disbursement methods
Micro-grants can only be disbursed using one of the following methods:
- institutional invoice for reimbursement
- payment by wire transfer, check, or credit card refund (Visa/MC/AmEx)
- individual/institutional reimbursement based on original receipts
- payment only by credit card refund (Visa/MC/AmEx)
Micro-grants are reviewed and approved by the Consortium Director. In cases where the Director recommends declining an application, the Director will bring the application to the review committee for confirmation.