The Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad program has awarded fellowships to nine UCLA graduate students and named two others as alternates.

The final list of fellows will be announced in October, but the 11 proposed fellows and alternates from UCLA are the campus’s largest group selected by the program since 2010. In 2019, UCLA had more participating fellows than any other research university in the nation.

Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, the Fulbright-Hays program gives doctoral candidates the opportunity to engage in the “comprehensive study of the aspects of a society or societies, including the study of their geography, history, culture, economy, politics, international relations and languages.” The program is designed to contribute to the development and improvement of the study of modern foreign languages and area studies in the U.S.

The UCLA honorees represent a wide range of disciplines, and will conduct their research in Argentina, Cameroon, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, Turkey and Uruguay. (One fellow and one alternate had planned to study in China, but following a July executive order by President Trump on Hong Kong normalization, awardees with research in China have been offered the option to work in an alternate location.) The average award per student is $48,910.

UCLA students apply for the Fulbright-Hays Program through the Graduate Division. Those who pass an internal faculty review are nominated by UCLA to the Department of Education, where a panel of international experts selects the fellows. More information is available at the UCLA Fulbright Fellowships website.

UCLA’s 2020 fellows are:

Daniel Abbe (art history; will study in Japan). Abbe’s research addresses the aftermath of Provoke, a photography magazine that was published in Tokyo between 1968 and 1969. He is investigating the aesthetic and political stakes of being a photographer.

Samuel Brandt (geography, will study in Uruguay). Brandt’s research chronicles the origin, evolution, and impact of Uruguay’s Movement for the Eradication for Unhealthy Rural Housing. He seeks to understand how features such as sensitivity to place, incremental expansion and small-scale construction distinguish MEVIR’s continuity and popularity with respect to nationwide housing programs in other countries.

Madison Felman-Panagotacos (Spanish and Portuguese; will study in Argentina). Felman-Panagotacos will examine how motherhood is represented in Argentine culture. She seeks to understand how women’s bodies are attributed narratives post-mortem in order to achieve various political aims.

Erdem Ilter (history; will study in Turkey). Ilter's research focuses on the transition from the Ottoman Empire to the Republic of Turkey, from 1895 to1952. His study will scrutinize the management of the eastern periphery of the empire, and examine Ottoman and Turkish responses to various political crises and the strategies they employed to enforce their authority at the eastern periphery of the empire.

Nihal Kayali (sociology, will study in Turkey). Kayali’s research examines changes in Syrian refugees’ access to health care since 2011. Her dissertation will analyze how geopolitics, changes in refugee health care policy and shifts in local enforcement practices have affected the configurations of care provision and refugees’ health care-seeking behavior.

Anthony Meyer (art history; will study in Mexico). Meyer’s research examines the art and architecture crafted, shaped and transformed by Nahua religious leaders during the Mexica empire and in the early years of Iberian occupation. His project sheds light on the importance of these individuals, how colonial authors fabricated their erasure, and how these histories of material and spatial practice resonate for Nahua communities today.

Qiaoyan Li Rosenberg (sociology; will study in Japan). Rosenberg’s project examines how Japan’s guest worker program, the Technical Intern Training Program, restricts migrant workers’ mobility. Rosenberg will concentrate on the relationship of states, brokers and new-generation migrant workers to examine how their interaction shapes Japan’s regime of guest worker control.

Nicholas Russo (ecology and evolutionary biology; will study in Cameroon). Russo's research investigates the movements of hornbills — large, seed-dispersing birds — in response to human activity, seasonal fruit availability and 3D vegetation structure.

Kirie Stromberg (archaeology; proposed study in China and Japan). Stromberg’s research focuses on the relationship between sound and the birth of complex society through the lens of excavated musical instruments. In addition to more traditional archaeological methods, Stromberg relies on the knowledge of living musicians to understand the materials, playing methods and meaning behind ancient instruments.

The alternates are:

Hyunjung Chi (Asian languages and cultures; proposed study in South Korea). Chi’s dissertation explores the role of psychiatry in South Korea from 1945 to 2000. Chi will show how psychiatric knowledge and practice were not simply transmitted from the West, but adapted by Korean psychiatrists who then contributed to the development of knowledge shared around the globe.

Andrew MacIver (anthropology; proposed study in China). MacIver explores the transition from the late Shang dynasty to the Western Zhou dynasty, one of the most significant geopolitical transformations of ancient China.