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New Zealand History Research Trust

The New Zealand History Research Trust Fund offers financial assistance to people carrying out projects that will significantly enhance the understanding of New Zealand's past. The funding can be used for a variety of purposes: to enable historians to work full-time on a project; to pay for research and writing costs; and to pay for travel costs associated with research.

Only works of non-fiction are eligible, and the scheme does not provide assistance for the collection or arrangement of archival material, the preparation of databases, or costs associated with the production and publication of a work.

This year the Trust Fund will grant 10-12 Awards of up to $12,000. Our practice of granting a $60,000 award has been discontinued in order to support a larger number of projects.

Any individual or group may apply for an Award in History, but tertiary students and staff are not eligible for assistance for projects undertaken as part of their university work. Staff of the Ministry for Culture and Heritage are also ineligible. Applicants may reside outside New Zealand.

Applications close on 15 October each year.

Details about the latest recipients are available at 2019 annual history awards reveal New Zealand’s stories.

An application form is available for download. Please read the form carefully and ensure that your application includes all the information requested. The main requirements are a discussion of the significance of the project, a clear explanation of the scope and focus of the project, a brief chapter outline, an indication of the stage the work has reached, a budget, brief and relevant personal information, and the names of two referees who know your work.

Read an April 2015 notice about Creative New Zealand and the New Zealand History Trust Fund working together to enhance co-ordination of funding for history.

Funding requests to support the research and writing of works that will significantly enhance the understanding of New Zealand's past should be directed to the NZ History Research Trust.

Funding requests to support the publishing of high-quality history writing should be directed to Creative New Zealand.

As a result of the Creative New Zealand review of literature the Arts Council has also agreed to:

  • make publishing proposals from individual writers eligible for funding as well as those from publishing companies and collectives.
  • increase the publishing subsidies available for literature in te reo or Pasifika languages, non-fiction work (including histories) and publications about specific artforms.

The Ministry for Culture & Heritage has decided to discontinue its practice of offering $60,000 Awards as part of its annual New Zealand History Research Trust award programme. Experience has shown that judging panels prefer to spread the available funds between a large number of applicants, rather than make a single large award. The Ministry has consequently decided to cease offering the $60,000 award. The New Zealand History Research Trust will continue to offer between 10 and 12 History Awards annually, up to the value of $12,000.

Updated on 9th January 2020