Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Grants - Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections

Guidelines have been posted for the National Endowment for the Humanities' Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections grants. U.S. nonprofit museums, libraries, archives, and educational institutions can apply for grants to plan and implement preventive conservation projects in ways that are cost effective, energy efficient, and environmentally sensitive and that aim to mitigate greatest risks to humanities collections rather than to meet prescriptive targets.

Apply for planning grants of up to $40,000 (with an option of up to $50,000) to bring together interdisciplinary teams that might reevaluate environmental parameters for collections and examine passive (nonmechanical) and low-energy alternatives to conventional energy sources and energy-intensive mechanized systems for managing collection environments. Testing, modeling, or project-specific research may help applicants better understand collection environments and formulate sustainable preservation strategies; therefore, with planning grants you might measure energy consumption; use blower door tests to identify air leaks in buildings; create mock-ups of lighting options; test natural ventilation methods; conduct thermal imaging of buildings; test the effect of buffered storage enclosures on moderating fluctuating environmental conditions; re-commission small-scale climate control systems; or adjust the operating protocols for climate control systems.

Apply for implementation grants of up to $350,000 to manage interior relative humidity and temperature by passive methods; install heating, ventilating, and air conditioning systems; install storage systems and rehouse collections; improve security and the protection of collections from fire, flood, and other disasters; and upgrade lighting systems and controls to achieve levels suitable for collections that are energy efficient. Projects that seek to implement preventive conservation measures in sustainable ways are especially encouraged.

Deadline: December 1, 2011

Program officers are willing to read draft proposals. See the guidelines for additional details and please contact the division for more information by emailing or calling 202-606-8570.

Laura Word
Senior Program Officer
Division of Preservation and Access
National Endowment for the Humanities