The Iran Heritage Foundation is pleased to announce that, after a lapse of several years due to Covid and administrative disruptions, its Academic Committee is reconstituted. Like its predecessor, its overall aim is to foster knowledge and appreciation of Iran’s rich cultural heritage by awarding research-related grants. It has, however, a fuller agenda than was previously the case. It will operate two cycles each year, the first disbursing £15,000 and the second £20,000. The Trustees will review the awards process and may consider occasional support over and beyond the annual grant budget in exceptional circumstances.

In this, the initial year, the deadlines for receipt of applications are 30 May 2024 and 29 August 2024. As before, the Committee will assess applications for research grants in various academic disciplines, with a particular emphasis (in alphabetical order) on archaeology, arts, history, linguistics, and literature, though applications from other disciplines may be considered. Projects to be supported may include the most various academic initiatives, from fieldwork to workshops to building databases and digitising images, and will – as previously – privilege new research such as editions and translations of key texts. In order to support multiple initiatives in each cycle, grants will preferably not exceed £3,000.

The application process and conditions for such grants are laid out on the website of the IHF. In its second cycle, the Committee will also award two book prizes each year; one in memory of Iradj Bagherzade, the late founder of I.B. Tauris Publishing (now a subsidiary of Bloomsbury Publishing), as an enabling prize to defray some of the costs of a book still to be published; and the other for an already published book making a significant contribution to the world of Iranian studies. The terms and conditions for these book prizes are also laid out on the website of the IHF.

The Committee’s mandate includes advice to the Trustees on the merits of major academic conferences, exhibitions and cultural events of value which the IHF has historically helped support or has itself organised in the past.  This will involve advice on the selection of institutional partners such as prestigious universities and museums, and collaboration with other charities dedicated to the celebration and preservation of Iranian culture.  We shall seek to support endeavours covering Prehistoric, Ancient, Islamic, Modern and Contemporary Iran.

The five members of the Academic Committee will meet at regular intervals throughout the year.  The membership of the Committee is as follows:

Professor Hassan Hakimian, former Director of the London Middle East Institute at SOAS, is Professor of Economics and currently the Interim Dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at HBKU University, Qatar. He is a Founding Member and a past President of the International Iranian Economic Association (IIEA). One of the programs he directed at SOAS won the Queen’s Prize for Higher and Further Education in 1996.

Professor Robert Hillenbrand, FBA (Universities of Edinburgh and St Andrews) has published 11 books, edited or co-edited 14 books, published some 200 articles, organised ten symposia and held ten visiting professorships. His specialties are Islamic architecture, painting and iconography with a special emphasis on Iran.

Professor Marcus Milwright (University of Victoria, Canada) is currently British Academy Global Professor at the University of York (2023-27). His research focuses on the art and archaeology of the Islamic Middle East, labour and traditional craft practices, and cross-cultural interaction. He has written six books and 82 papers. 

Professor Andrew Peacock is Bishop Wardlaw Professor of Islamic History at the University of St Andrews and a Fellow of the British Academy. His research focuses on the history and culture of Iran and the Persianate world. He has written or edited twelve books and published some 55 papers.

Dr Julian Raby, art historian and long-term Director of the Freer Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., has been founding editor of Oxford Studies in Islamic Art (14 volumes) and General Editor, Khalili Collection of Islamic Art (over 30 volumes). He has written numerous books and articles and mounted multiple exhibitions.

For Terms and Conditions please click here

To apply please click  here.