Application Deadline-November 30th, 2018

The William R. Waters Research Grant was established in 1999 in honor of William R. Waters, editor of the Review of Social Economy for many years and President of ASE in 1987. The grant was first awarded for Summer, 2000.

The purpose of the William R. Waters Research Grant Program is to inspire scholars to organize their research in social economics and social economy along the lines suggested by William Waters in his 1988 presidential address to the Association for Social Economics.

The major concern of social economics is explaining the economy in its broadest aspects; that is, showing how human beings deal with the ordinary business of using human and physical resources to achieve a level of material comfort. Explanation includes cultural, political, and ethical details as they are needed for a full understanding. As in any economics, there are three parts to social economics. First is the philosophical base of the social economist, which may or may not be a reflection of the philosophical base or ethos of the society he/she is studying. Social economics (or any economics) builds upon it. It is the hard core as in the recent popular literature of the philosophy of science. The second part of the discipline is a description of the significant characteristics of the economy. The economist must observe the multiplicity of economic reality and abstract those characteristics that are substantive. The two together, the philosophical premises and the empirical observations, will determine the third part of the discipline, social economic policy. Policy formulation is thus a mix of the first two. [William R. Waters, presidential address, “Social Economics: A Solidarist Perspective,” Review of Social Economy, 1988, p. 113 ff.].


The Association of Social Economics offers a research grant in the amount of up to $5,000 to promote research in social economics and the social economy. Possible topics include, but are not limited to: the role of social values in economic life, economic policy and social wellbeing, social capital, social norms, social networks, human capabilities, workplace policies and social justice, corporate social responsibility, socially responsible investment, microfinance, ethics and economics, poverty, inequality, and policies related to health, education, and welfare.

In order to advance the careers of promising new scholars in particular, applicants for the Waters grant must be graduate students in PhD programs who have not yet completed their dissertation, or faculty members (tenured or untenured) below the rank of Associate Professor (or its equivalent outside the U.S.).


The current amount of the annual grant is up to $5000.

Application Process


To apply for the grant, the following materials need to be submitted by Wednesday, November 30, 2018:

  1. A completed application form(Please click here for the document)
  2. A 4 to 5 page narrative (in 12 pt Times New Roman font single-spaced) explaining the following:
    1. The purpose of the project: What will be learned from the research to be undertaken, and what will be its contribution to knowledge? What are the expected outputs from the work?
    2. A description of the research project to be undertaken, including the issues to be examined, the research methods to be employed (this needs to be sufficiently detailed), and why this constitutes innovative work in comparison to the available evidence in the field.
    3. The relationship of the project to social economics: What conceptual frameworks, topical concerns, and/or empirical methodologies drawn from social economics will be used in the present project? How is the project expected to contribute to social economics?
    4. The plan of work: Include a time-table for the project, resources to be used, travel plans, etc.
    5. The estimated budget: Indicate all costs that would be covered by the grant (e.g. travel expenses, research costs, summer stipend, etc.)

3. An up-to-date curriculum vitae

4. Two letters of recommendation: For students, one letter should be from their dissertation advisor.

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