Robert Kahn Fellowship for the Scientific Study of Social Issues

Suntae Kim, the 2014 Kahn Fellow, and Bob Kahn. Read Suntae’s profile.

The Fellowship Fund was established by the students, colleagues, family and friends of Bob Kahn to honor his lifelong commitment to using the best social science to generate new insights on major social problems and point toward their solutions. The Kahn Fellowship was created in this spirit. Learn more about Bob by reading his obituary.

The Fellowship will provide dissertation support for one doctoral candidate each year from the University of Michigan community who is committed to using empirical science to help solve the deep and abiding challenges confronting society. The Fellowship will be awarded to the candidate whose research gives most promise of dealing innovatively with some major social problem.


Applicants must have been admitted to Ph.D. candidacy (or equivalent progression in a professional school). Applicants must be eligible to accept the Fellowship and after receiving the Fellowship funds must plan to finish their doctoral program within a year.


The Fellowship will cover two semesters of tuition and one calendar year of GradCare and dental insurance. It will also include a stipend of $25,000. Please see the Fellowships & Awards Homepage for specific award amounts and application deadlines, updated at the beginning of each calendar year.

Application Process

Please see the Fellowships & Awards Homepage for award amounts and application deadlines, updated at the beginning of each calendar year. If you have any questions about the award process, please send an email to

Additional Expectations

  • At one year mark, you will be asked to share an update about the status of your research.
  • Acknowledge ISR and this award’s support in publications and presentations.

Kahn Fellows

2022: Elizabeth Burland, Ford School of Pulic Policy. Consequences of Rural-Urban Inequality: The Role of Geographic Variation in Educational Inequality

2021: Darrell Allen, School of Education. Disconnect between race-blind policies and race-conscious results: A mixed-methods Critical Policy Analysis of two district Local Control Accountability Plans

2020: Sara Stein, School of Social Work, Psychology. Towards Intentional Relational Well-Being: Syndemic Contributions of Mental Health, Trauma Exposure, and Sociodemographic Factors to Risk for Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) Victimization.

2019: Tia Clinton, College of Literature, Science and Arts, Sociology. You Belong Here: Understandings of the School Bond, Discipline and Achievement in a Restorative Educational Environments

2018: Sarah Gutin, School of Public Health. Factors Associated with Safer Conception Uptake by Women Living with HIV in Botswana.

2018: Lauren Tighe, School of Social Work. Examining Unique Groups at the Intersection of Income, Education, and Achievement.

2017: Jasmine Manalel, College of Literature, Science and Arts, Psychology. Successful “Adulting” to Successful Aging: Lifespan Influences of Social Relations

Lisa Marchiondo, 2011 Kahn Fellowship winner. Read her profile.

2016: Tissyana Camacho, College of Literature, Science and Arts, Psychology. Ethnic Identity in College: Social Experiences and Developmental Pathways.

2015: Eric Seymour, Urban and Regional Planning, Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning. Federal Financial Institutions, Foreclosure and the Fortunes of Detroit’s Middle- and Working-Class Neighborhoods.

2014: Suntae Kim, Department of Management & Organizations, Ross School of Business. Entrepreneurial Imagination in Detroit: Ethnography of Post-Corporate Entrepreneurship.

2013: Kristen Elmore, School of Social Work, Joint Program with Psychology. Improving Academic Effort and Achievement among Low-Income Minority Youth using Small Scale Interventions.

2012: Traci Kennedy, College of Literature, Science and Arts, Psychology. Who, What, When, and Where? The Differential Impact of Community Violence Exposure on Youth’s Psychological Well-Being.

2011: Lisa Marchiondo, College of Literature, Science and Arts, Psychology. Investigating the Mechanisms by which Interpersonal Mistreatment Undermines Organizational Life.

2010: Joel Adam Cobb, Stephen M. Ross School of Business Management & Organization. From the ‘Treaty of Detroit’ to the 401(k): The Development, Evolution and Consequences of Privatized Welfare in the United States.

To support this fund and make future awards possible, please visit our Next Generation Giving Page.