Media Projects

Humanities Iowa recognizes that media projects can serve as a powerful tool for fulfilling our mission to foster greater public awareness of and appreciation for the value of the humanities. Humanities Iowa will consider applications for media projects such as a radio or television programs or series, audiotape or CD sound recordings, videotape, motion picture film, DVD, photography or any combination of these media. Special considerations for such grants are:

  • While media projects are governed by the same principles and standards as non-media projects, a special effort must be made to ensure the integrity of the humanities. We intend that these projects be not only of the highest technical and artistic quality, but that the humanities content be central to the project. Humanities scholars are not required to be featured in all media projects, but those who see or hear the program must have no doubt as to the project’s fundamental humanities content.
  • Applicants should first determine the timeline of the project and, in consultation with HI staff, may choose to divide the project into phases (development, production, distribution) and make application for a particular phase rather than the entire project. Grants for post-production are rarely given unless a previous phase received HI grant support.
  • Applications should include an abstract or rough draft of a script or story treatment, as applicable. Please submit one copy as an attachment.
  • Work samples (e.g., raw footage or a rough cut of the project, or a final cut of another project) are welcome, but are not required. Please submit one copy as an attachment.
  • Applications should include a detailed production schedule, with technical requirements (equipment, processes and supplies to be used), as applicable.
  • The project director may be actively involved in the creative process of the project, but any payment made shall be in the form of an honorarium for the creative, scholarly work of the project, not salaries for administrative duties. Salary for administrative duties may be included as part of the cash match.
  • A Humanities Iowa subcommittee may not only review the application, but may also review progress on the awarded project as a condition of release of funds.
  • The finished product should include a disclaimer that the program does not necessarily represent the views of Humanities Iowa or the National Endowment for the Humanities.
  • At least two copies of a finished product must be furnished to Humanities Iowa.
  • Any royalties or proceeds that arise from the sale, rental, or use of a media product funded by HI must be returned to HI in an amount not to exceed the total amount of the HI award. The formula for this repayment will be calculated on the percentage of the HI grant(s) to the total production cost.

Have Questions?

Humanities Iowa staff welcomes the opportunity to consult with applicants on proposals by telephone or e-mail.

Please contact Heather Plucar, Grant and Finance Director, at or at (319) 335-4150.

We will work with you to strengthen the application and answer questions.

If you would like to submit a draft proposal for critique, please do so several weeks before the deadline and we will help you refine the document before you submit a final version.

Apply Here

All grant applications must be submitted online, through Submittable, our submissions manager.