The Frank M. Chapman Memorial Fund of the American Museum of Natural History
Portrait of Frank M. Chapman
Dr. Frank M. Chapman, October, 1928
Image no. 110999, AMNH Library

Frank M. Chapman Memorial Fund Committee

Joel Cracraft, Chairman

George F. Barrowclough, Edwin Morgens, Michael J. Novacek, Robert F. Rockwell, Nancy Simmons, Brian T. Smith

The Frank M. Chapman Memorial Fund of the American Museum of Natural History was set up by Ms. Elsie M. B. Naumburg in memory of Dr. Chapman, a long-term Chairman of the Department of Ornithology at the Museum. Grants for research in several aspects of ornithology are supported by the Fund. A Committee composed of Curators in the Ornithology Department at the Museum, along with the Museum's Richard Gilder Graduate School and other representatives of the Museum and non-Museum communities, handles the administration of the Fund and the grants.

Three categories of grants are available from the Fund, based on a competitive evaluation of the nature and quality of the proposed research.

1. Chapman Research Grants: These are small short-term awards for research that are available to graduate students for expenses associated with projects primarily focused on the systematics and evolutionary biology of birds. These awards are highly competitive (recent success rates are approximately 20-30 percent); they average approximately $1,500, but occasionally are as large as $2,000-$3,000. Salaries and stipends are not funded. There is one competition per year with a submission deadline in November. Awards are normally announced in early to mid April.

The 2021 grant program information and application forms can be found at the link above. The deadline is 30 November 2021.

2. Collection Study Grants: Collection Study Grants are awarded, competitively, to avian systematists (graduate students being a priority) without other funds who wish to perform research on the specimens in the Ornithological Collections of the American Museum of Natural History. There is no deadline for application for these grants; they are considered when they are received. However, it normally takes a month or more to evaluate and process the applications; so grants should be submitted at least two months prior to when the researcher would like to visit the Collection. These grants are for expenses only, no stipends, and should not exceed $2,000.

*Note: At this time, because of the COVID pandemic, outside visitors to the collection are not allowed. Potential applicants should contact the curatorial staff to inquire about access.

3. Chapman Postdoctoral Fellowships: Program to be announced.