Submit a Letter of Inquiry

Submit a Letter of Inquiry

If support is available according to MacArthur’s grantmaking guidelines, the next step is to submit a letter of inquiry about the work being proposed. Unless otherwise indicated in the call for proposals, begin by selecting the "Submit a New Idea" button at the bottom right of our application landing page.

The Foundation’s Response 

We will send you an acknowledgment within five business days to confirm that your letter of inquiry was received, and we will direct it to the appropriate staff members for review. The review process for eligible inquiries can take up to eight weeks, unless otherwise noted elsewhere.

As is now the case with most charities in the United States who make grants to organizations based outside the United States, the Foundation checks the names of foreign-based grantees and the principal officers and directors of such grantees against one or more lists maintained by the U.S. government, the European Union, and the United Nations, which contain the names determined by such entities to be terrorist organizations or individual terrorists. This process is a result of legislation passed by the U.S. Congress, Executive Orders issued by the President, and suggested guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. A memorandum on this topic is available upon request.

All material submitted becomes the property of the MacArthur Foundation. The Foundation sometimes submits inquiries or proposals for confidential outside review.


With few exceptions, as noted elsewhere, there are no fixed deadlines.

What MacArthur Does Not Fund

The Foundation does not support political activities or attempts to influence action on specific legislation, and does not provide the following:

  • Scholarships / tuition assistance for undergraduate, graduate, or postgraduate studies
  • Annual fundraising drives
  • Institutional benefits
  • Honorary functions or similar projects
  • Unsolicited grants to individuals, except for the MacArthur Fellows, which operates through a separate nominating process that is not open to public nominations.

Revisit Steps
Step 1: Learn About What We Fund ›
Step 2: Understanding Guidelines and Funding Cycles ›

  • Our Commitment to Fairness and Courtesy

    The Foundation is committed to ensuring that grant-seekers, grantees, and the public have access to clear and up-to-date information about the Foundation and its programs, and are treated with fairness and professional courtesy.

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