CFP: Career Advancement Research Grant (2023)

The Special Interest Group on Design of Communication (SIGDOC) invites interested members to apply for Career Advancement Research Grants up to $1,200. Proposed research projects should promote research pertaining to the design of communication, including (though not limited to) information design, information architecture, content development, user experience, help and documentation (traditional and user-contributed), social media, as well as technology that supports and enhances communication. The research methods should be rigorous and clearly situated within the fields of technical communication, user experience, and/or communication design.

These grants are specifically designed for early career and/or junior faculty who are working on one of their first major projects related to the design of communication. We encourage scholars at all levels to apply, especially doctoral students and members at non-research institutions, and we look forward to opportunities to support emerging scholarship in addition to established scholars.

Funds may be used for expenses, materials, salary, or research assistance. Funds may also be used to purchase gift cards to recruit research participants, but the researchers would first have to submit a W-9, since gift cards count as income. Funds may be used for travel to collect data and conduct research, but should not be requested for conference travel to present research. Grant recipients will receive a registration cost waiver to the SIGDOC conference in the year following the award of their grant and will be invited to present their research in person. Since the amount is rather small, we suggest not working with your institution’s department of research. ACM uses a reimbursement model for all expenses up to $1200.


To apply for a SIGDOC research grant, interested SIGDOC members should submit a 3-page proposal that contains the following information:

  • Project title on all pages
  • Name, title, institutional affiliation, and contact information for the project
    investigator(s), on page 1, separable from items 3-6 (not included in page count)
  • A brief project description
  • A discussion of the significance of the project to members of SIGDOC and
    identification of how the research will be published/made available
  • An outline of the project methodology or research tasks, including plans for IRB
    approval if human subjects are involved in any capacity
  • A projected budget statement, excluding institutional overhead and indirect costs
    (request a waiver from your institution if necessary. Exceptions can be made in
    instances when a waiver is not possible)


Three members of the Executive Committee (EC) score anonymous versions of the proposals. The EC members score the submissions along a five-point scale using the following three questions:

  • Is this project clear in its goals?
  • Is the methodology of high quality and sufficient rigor?
  • Does this research fulfill the mission of SIGDOC?


Applications must be emailed to no later than 11:59 on November 15, 2023. Winners will be selected by December 7, 2023 in time for projects planned for spring 2024 or later. All applicants must be members of SIGDOC. To become a member, visit the ACM website. Recipients will be expected to produce a one-page report of their progress one year after receiving their award. The SIG would also like to be informed of any final publications resulting from the project. Recipients are encouraged to submit their research to SIGDOC’s Communication Design Quarterly.


Please direct any questions to Chair Dan Richards ( or Secretary-Treasurer Susan Youngblood (

Past Recipients

Past winners’ applications are linked to a PDF copy, if available.



  • “Readying for Risk: Analyzing and Creating Effective Company Safety Initiatives” — Joseph E. Williams, Ph.D, Louisiana Tech University
  • “Increasing Access to and Usability of Health Communications for Alaska Natives in Rural Alaska” — Jessica Lynn Campbell, Ph.D, University of Alabama in Huntsville