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Eugene Garfield Research Fellowship

The Eugene Garfield Research Fellowship promotes and supports research in the history of information science. The fellowship, established in 2013, is intended to stimulate research into the history of information science in the medical or health sciences, recognizing that rediscovery, interpretation, and understanding of a rich history in this key knowledge area helps practitioners and researchers interpret the present and prepare for the future. The fellowship was endowed by Eugene Garfield, AHIP, FMLA (1926-2017), founder and former chair of the Institute for Scientific Information (ISI).  Garfield is known for his innumerable and significant contributions to the practice of medical librarianship. 

The fellowship recipient or research collaboration group receives a certificate at the Association’s annual meeting and a stipend of $5,000 after the annual meeting to be used for research-related purposes regarding the history of information science to increase the underlying knowledgebase in this area and enhance the current and future practice of the information professions, particularly health sciences librarianship.

Do you want to present the best application possible and improve your chances of receiving this fellowship? 


  • Garfield Fellowships are funded through a competitive annual grant program with applications due by December 1 of each year.
  • The award is not restricted to disbursement in a single year and funding may be disbursed over a period of up to two years depending on the needs of the research fellow or research collaboration group.
  • The award may be used to supplement or extend other awards, including other private or government-supported fellowships, but is not contingent on receiving other awards.
  • The successful applicant/group must submit an annual progress report to the MLA according to guidelines for grant-reporting procedures established for the Eugene Garfield Research Fellowship.
  • Research should normally lead to a publishable manuscript with the intention of submission to a peer reviewed publication including the Journal of the Medical Library Association or other appropriate publication.

Grant Funds

The Garfield Research Fellow receives an unrestricted grant that is awarded to the applicant/group and not to an organization or institution.  The grant may be used for salaries, supplies, equipment, travel, fees, insurance, salaries for research assistants, and other research-related costs as specified in the grant application. The grant may NOT be used for institutional overhead, other indirect costs, income tax payments, or tuition. Acceptance of the grant may be subject to institutional rules and regulations and to all applicable tax laws. Guidelines for grant-reporting procedures are distributed to the grantee upon notification.


  • Applicants must be members of MLA.
  • Health sciences librarians and information scientists, health professionals, researchers, educators, and administrators are eligible.
  • Applicants must have a master's or doctor's degree or be enrolled in a program leading to such a degree and demonstrate a commitment to the health sciences. The fellowship is not designed to support research for a doctoral dissertation or master’s thesis.
  • For group research applications, at least one of the group members must qualify according to the above criteria

Submission Checklist

  • Completed online application;
  • Applicant’s curriculum vitae or biographical sketch (in the case of a group application, the primary investigator should submit her/his curriculum vitae or biographical sketch as well as information about each member of the research collaboration group including what role each individual will perform in the research process);
  • Detailed research proposal: The proposal should be five to ten pages in length, and it should include all critical elements of the proposed study including background and rationale, research aims, budget, research design and methodology, timeline, and plans for disseminating the results; and
  • Letter(s) of support from the applicant’s (in the case of a group collaboration, the primary investigator’s) home institution or from organizations such as the MLA Board, committees, sections, and chapters of MLA; graduate schools of library and information science; university deans or department chairs in health professions schools or health care organizations; library organizations; or, scientific academies and societies.
  • The letter(s) of support should address: (1) why the research is significant to the field and (2) why the applicant/group is qualified to do the research. The letter(s) of support should be attached to the application.
  • Upload a current photo to member profile for promotional purposes (optional).

Review and Awards Criteria

The MLA Eugene Garfield Research Fellowship Jury will review applications for scientific and technical merit. The jury will follow modified review criteria based on those used for National Institutes of Health grant applications:

  • Research Proposal: The scientific merit of the proposal, its importance to the field of information science, and its alignment with the stated purposes of the Garfield Fellowship. The proposal should be five to ten pages in length, single-spaced, with twelve-point type.
  • Candidate: An assessment of the candidate's/group's previous academic and research performance or publication activity and the candidate’s/group's potential research and/or mentoring contributions to health sciences librarianship or health informatics.
  • Research Environment: An assessment of the quality of the research environment as it relates to the successful conclusion of the research proposal. 
  • Research Dissemination Plan: An assessment of the plan to disseminate the results within and outside the field of health sciences librarianship and health informatics.

Ready to Submit an Application?

  • The application process is CLOSED. 
  • Online applications will open next in August 2019.

Previous Grant Recipients

  • 2019: none awarded
  • 2018: none awarded
  • 2017: Nicole Dalmer
  • 2016: Elizabeth Connor, AHIP
  • 2015: Alyson Gamble
  • 2014: Susan Crawford, AHIP, FMLA, Ann Weller, and John Brundage

Have a question? Contact MLA's grants coordinator