The Research Exhibition Grant is awarded by the DHS annually to assist those engaged in design history research that leads to an exhibition or display. The exhibition or display may be permanent or temporary and take a physical and/or digital format.

1. Overview

1.a A total of £1,500 is awarded annually for the Research Exhibition Grant. This sum is divided amongst several applications deemed of high merit, at the discretion of a judging panel drawn from the DHS Executive Committee who undertake a blind peer review of anonymous applications.

1.b Individual applicant's funding requests should not exceed £750. DHS grants cannot cover retrospective costs that have already been incurred and paid for prior to the submission of your application.

1.c All outcomes of the award/grant must acknowledge the Design History Society Research Exhibition Grant and must include the DHS logo on the landing page.

2. The Application Process

2.a The deadline for applications is 11:59pm GMT on 30th April 2024. No applications submitted after these dates will be considered. Applications should be sent to the DHS administrator, Jenna Allsopp at:

2.b The application form can be downloaded from this webpage or requested via email from the DHS administrator, Jenna Allsopp at:

Applicants are requested not to send CVs, as these will not be taken into consideration in the judging process.

We aim to inform all applicants of the outcome of their submission within three weeks of the submission deadline via email.

This grant is open to members and non-members of the Society.

3. Eligibility

The Research Exhibition Grant is open to all researchers (including students) working individually or collaboratively anywhere in the world – whether independently or in affiliation with an institution. Inter-disciplinary projects are welcomed providing they demonstrate a genuine focus upon design history. Applications involving collaborations across multiple institutions, localities and/or constituencies are especially encouraged.

3.b The Research Exhibition Grant can be used to assist with the following costs for exhibitions solely or collaboratively curated by the applicant: photocopying and scanning costs; permission costs and copyright clearance for use of images; costs incurred for research travel, including travel and accommodation for archive visits, conference attendance, conducting interviews, library, museum and collection visits and other primary and secondary research activities directly linked to the exhibition outcome.

Unsuitable costs include, but are not limited to: equipment; refreshments, subsistence (food and drink); higher than standard class travel or accommodation; exhibition production costs (e.g. materials, insurance, loan costs and installation); exhibition promotion and marketing; payment for hours worked; payment of intern or any other employee/subcontractor.

For image-related applications, the applicant is required to submit a numbered list of confirmed illustrations along a list of individual image costs. All applicants are required to attached clearly presented quotations for costings.

3.e Applicants are required to give as detailed a budget as possible, including a clear identification, itemisation and proof of current price points of the proposed costs.

3.f The applicant is required to submit written evidence that the exhibition is scheduled to open within 2 years of the application deadline.

The applicant is required to provide a written letter of support (max 1 page) from their institution or an academic associate.

Only one application per exhibition will be considered.

4. Assessment Criteria

Applications are anonymised and judged on the following criteria:

• original and significant contribution of the outlined activity to the discipline of design history and its dissemination

• impact the event will have in facilitating collaboration across a global design history community and furtherance of research in our field

• articulated and appropriate objectives, strategies and implementation

• clear demonstration of how the project will be realizable in terms of technology and archival preservation

• contribution to the aims and activities of the Society which aims to support activity that cannot be effectively or entirely funded through other funding avenues

• suitability of the applicant(s) to achieve the proposed project

• feasibility of timeline, outcomes and efficacy of dissemination by virtual means

• value for money and justification of costs

Priority will be given to applications which provide sufficient, detailed information of all of the above.

5. Dissemination

Recipients of this grant are asked to provide a report of 500-800 words of their project (with a copy-right free image and caption) to be published on the DHS website, within 6 months of notification of receipt of the award.

All outcomes of the award/grant must acknowledge the Design History Society Virtual Event Award/Grant and must include the DHS logo on the landing page.

6. We wish to remind our applicants that;

  • the DHS is committed to supporting equalities and therefore invites applicants to reflect on and state clearly how their proposed projects address inequalities.
  • the DHS is also committed to addressing sustainability issues and invites applicants to state how their project has been shaped with an environmentally-conscious approach (in relation to travel, participation and use of resources).

Application form

Download application form here