August 3,2020: Library locations will reopen to Harvard students, faculty, and staff for the fall semester. See the full reopening schedule.

​Pforzheimer Fellowships for GSAS students

A chance for graduate students in Harvard's Faculty of Arts and Sciences to learn about possible careers in libraries​.


Apply for Harvard Library’s Pforzheimer Fellowships to work on a special remote project with a librarian or archivist this winter/spring 2021. Fellowships provide an opportunity for FAS graduate students to learn about library careers, while advancing their own research skills—getting to know a library from the inside. ​​

Application Deadline

December 7, 2020

Pforzheimer Fellowship Dates

February through May 2021


Each Pforzheimer Fellow is granted a stipend of $5,000

Things to know

  • Any graduate student in the humanities and social sciences who's been enrolled at Harvard from one to five years may apply.
  • Fellows are assigned a mentor from the library and work on defined projects under the mentor's supervision. See projects, below.
  • Fellows are expected to assume full responsibility for their projects.
  • Each fellow must submit a final report of this work describing and evaluating their experiences.

How to Apply

  • Choose a Project: Review the proposed fellowship projects and choose which you'd like to apply to work on. You may submit more than one application. 
  • Contact your References: You will be asked to include two references on your application. Your references should be two people you've worked with while at Harvard, one of which must be a Harvard faculty member. Your references must send a letter of support to Hannah Hack at hannah_hack@harvard.edu.


All materials must be submitted by December 7, 2020

Apply online

A small committee, chaired by Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor Ann Blair, select fellows for the program with input from the Harvard Library.

Library Projects Winter/Spring 2021

Baker Library | Bleichroeder Prints Project

The Bleichroeder Print Collection includes more than 1,000 woodcuts, engravings, etchings, and lithographs ranging in date from the 16th to the 19th century. The collection is rich in views of stock exchanges, banks, mints, and treasuries; portraits of bankers, statesmen, and financiers; political and personal satires; national finance and taxation and a large number of prints on speculation and credit. The project will include an assessment and evaluation of the collection in terms of overall research value and prioritizing the collection in terms of which items to scan and make recommendations for metadata.

About the Bleichroeder Prints Project (pdf)

Baker Library | HBS Case History

2021 marks the 100th anniversary of the introduction of the case method of teaching, a seminal moment in HBS history. This anniversary offers the opportunity to reflect on the development and growth of this pedagogy over ten decades. Baker Library will be producing an exhibit and research portal. The Pforzheimer Fellow will conduct research and develop a proposed framework for the exhibition and research portal.

About the HBS Case History Project (PDF)


Baker Library | Research Data Management

Increasingly, scholars have an interest — and even a requirement — to manage and share the data that they collect as part of their research, for reasons of reproducibility, efficiency, credit, and stewardship. For HBS researchers, this can span a variety of formats (quantitative and qualitative) and subject areas (e.g., finance, strategy, psychology, sociology, and many more). Baker Library is engaging with these researchers and offers services to help organize, safeguard, and — where appropriate — publicly share their data files. This project is an opportunity for a Pforzheimer Fellow to assume the roles of data manager and curator as they work with staff and faculty to prepare one or more HBS-produced datasets for long-term preservation and re-use by researchers worldwide.

About the Research Data Management Project (pdf)

Baker Library | Women, Enterprise and Society

In 2002, Baker Library launched: Women, Enterprise and Society: A Web Guide to Resources in the Business Manuscripts Collection at Baker Library. In the summer of 2021, Baker Library plans to update this heavily used guide to reflect current collecting efforts and to lay the foundation to re-launch the site on a new platform with enhanced search and discovery of the identified manuscript collections. This project would be the foundational work in preparation for the launch of a more robust site taking advantage of new technology to enhance search and discovery of these amazing resources as well as updating the actual content of the site. 

About the Women Enterprise Society Project (pdf)

Harvard Film Archive | James E. Hinton Collection

Working closely with the Collections Archivist, the Pforzheimer Fellow will assist in expanding access to the collection of James E. Hinton, an American filmmaker and photographer. The project will result in an enhanced collection finding aid and a new digital collections page that will provide context for Hinton’s career as well as new descriptions for each of his films alongside streaming digital access video files.

About the James E. Hinton Collection Project (pdf)

Harvard University Archives | Bruning Translation

The Heinrich Bruning collection held by the Harvard University Archives is of great interest to researchers studying the history of the Weimar Republic and the rise of the Nazi regime. To improve the discovery of and access to this collection by historians and archivists in Germany, where several other complementary collections are held, the Harvard University Archives seeks a language expert to translate the catalog record and finding aid for the collection from English into German. The outcome of this project is two-fold: a German translation of the finding aid for the Heinrich Bruning collection, and a German translation of the catalog record, each of which will be published in HOLLIS for Archival Discovery and HOLLIS as well as in national and international databases to which Harvard Library contributes content. The finding aid is also accessible via search engines on the open web.

About the Bruning Translation Project (pdf)

Harvard University Archives | Native American Resources Guide

The Harvard University Archives seeks a graduate student in Native American studies, American history, or a related field to create an online guide to 17th, 18th, 19th, and selected 20th century resources relating to Native Americans in the Archives' collections. Building on an earlier guide, the project will involve in-depth research to uncover newly acquired, newly cataloged, and newly digitized materials that document the University's connections to Native American communities in New England and beyond. The Fellow will also enrich the guide by using their expertise to reveal some of the complexities of the colonial and post-colonial context in which many of the materials were created.

About the Native American Guide Project (pdf)

Harvard University Archives | Researcher's Guide

In common with other special collections and archives in the Harvard Library, the Harvard University Archives uses multiple platforms to catalog and provide access to its collections. Faced with this array of entry points, faculty, students, and scholars at Harvard and beyond are often unsure of how best to begin their research. The goal of this project is to create navigational guides that anticipate questions that researchers face as they find their way to the Archives’ collections. The outcome will be a series of brief video tutorials, “More than meets the eye: a researcher's guide to the Harvard University Archives,” created by and for researchers that introduce archival resources and advice for using the discovery platforms and access tools that support a vast range of historical inquiry.

Learn more about the Researcher's Guide Project (pdf)

Judaica Division | Israel Ephemera Archive

The Harvard Library's Israel Collection, the world's largest collection of lsraeliana next to that of the National Library of Israel, is also the largest existing repository of Israeli ephemera (posters and broadsides). Harvard's Israel Ephemera Archive is a unique archive of primary source material that has largely been digitized and made available online. The Israel Ephemera Archive Project will enhance metadata for thousands of images of Israeli broadsides and posters, thus improving access to a unique documentary resource for students and scholars. The final product would be a vast corpus of enhanced bibliographic records that will greatly facilitate access to these materials for scholars. 

About the Israel Ephemera Archive Project (pdf)

Loeb Music Library | Boston Rock City

The subject of this project is the Arthur Freedman Collection, an audiovisual archive capturing over four decades of Boston rock music performances. Beginning in the late 1970s, Arthur Freedman (born in Newton, Massachusetts in 1957) attended and recorded countless shows, maintaining an enormous archive in his home. In 2012, Arthur Freedman donated his collection to Harvard Library, with audio material directed to the Loeb Music Library and audiovisual material to the Harvard Film Archive. The Pforzheimer Fellow will generate and edit Wikidata entities for bands, musicians and venues in the Arthur Freedman Collection at Harvard Library. The Fellow will also reconcile agents to existing URIs.

About the Boston Rock City Project (pdf)

Loeb Music Library | The Music of Black Americans

In fall 2021, we will gather online as scholars, composers and performers, as teachers, students and members of the public, as people of color and their allies to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of The Music of Black Americans, a foundational text in American music scholarship. The book challenged a Eurocentric academic field to broaden its vision; the book's author, Eileen Southern (1920-2002), was the first Black woman tenured in Harvard University's Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Over the course of the semester, the Pforzheimer Fellow will help build an online showcase for a vibrant classroom-library collaboration at Harvard University. 

About the Music of Black Americans Project (pdf)

Schlesinger Library | Hot Button Issues

Anticipating the fiftieth anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing a right to choose abortion, the Schlesinger Library will bring together leading experts to discuss the past and future of reproduction in America. We seek to catalyze a discussion that moves beyond the predictable domains of law and history to embrace the many disciplines that Roe has touched, and which are necessary to understand the decision, its antecedents, and its fallout, disciplines as various as moral philosophy, political science, and neonatology. The Pforzheminer Fellow will be involved in many dimensions of planning and research for the outcomes of these conversations, including: an exploratory seminar, exhibition planning, the tool kit for civic renewal to advance teaching and talking about hot button issues, and more.

About the Hot Button Issues Project (pdf)

User Research Center | Library Research Study

Library staff have a deep understanding about how library users conduct research. However, we have significant evidence that many students from all disciplines complete assignments and do research without using the libraries at all. Some of these students described barriers in their research that could have been overcome by using the libraries, but they didn’t realize the value the libraries provide. The fellow will work with the User Research Center (URC) team to plan and execute a research study, using interviews and observational research to gather information on how undergraduates complete assignments, when they use the libraries or other support services, and perceived effort of the same assignments. The fellow will work with the URC to synthesize the data. Findings will be shared broadly with library staff.

About the Library Research Study Project (pdf)

About the fellowship

Librarianship in the 21st century engages with some of the liveliest areas of intellectual activity, yet most graduate students have little idea of the exciting professional opportunities available in libraries.​

During these four-month long fellowships, which will run this winter/spring from February 2021 through May 2021, the Pforzheimer Fellows are assigned a mentor from the library and work on important remote projects under the mentor's supervision. While getting to know librarians and librarianship firsthand, they will be expected to assume responsibility for their projects. Each Pforzheimer Fellow will be granted a stipend of $5,000.

At the end of the semester, the fellows will be asked to submit a final report of this work describing and evaluating their experiences. Fellows will also participate in discussions with each other about their experiences.

These fellowships are in honor of Carl H. Pforzheimer III for his generous contributions to Harvard and its libraries.

Current Fellows

In spring 2021, four fellows were selected and each were granted a stipend of $5,000:

Past Fellows

In summer 2019 and fall 2020, five fellows were selected: 

  • Melany Park: Polaroid Project 
  • Emma Zitzow-Childs: Born Digital Project 
  • Robert Roessler: Harvard Library Bulletin Project 
  • Sophie Wilkowske: Dun Genealogy Project 
  • Sophia Mao: Open Education Resources Project 


Questions about apply, please email hannah_hack@harvard.edu. For more general, academic questions about the fellowship, please email Professor Ann Blair at amblair@fas.harvard.edu.