AACSRE Emerging Fellows Program


The Academic Advisory Council for Signage Research and Education (AACSRE), through its Emerging Fellows program, will provide research support for projects related to the societal benefits of on-premise signs.  The research support is intended to stimulate and extend research projects by scholars from public and private universities in the United States who have demonstrated promise and/or success in conducting research related to signage. The scope of proposals may vary widely across disciplines and methodologies.  Topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Scholarship of legal issues related to signs and wayfinding

  • Creative activity related to the design of new signs or the reuse of existing signs

  • Engineering studies related to signs and traffic safety and mobility

  • Economic analysis related to the value of signs

  • Marketing or psychology research on how consumers perceive and respond to signage

  • Analysis on the history of signs and wayfinding

  • Research on the integrations of smart technologies within small and large scale signage applications and the impacts this technology will have on the urban environments

  • Research on signage and wayfinding issues related to diversity, equity, and inclusion and/or the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic


Fellowships of up to $10,000 per year will be awarded to support the development and dissemination of signage research.  Funds may also be used for the acquisition of technology to support research.  AACSRE may issue 1-3 fellowships per year.  Fellows of this program will hold this title for up to two years. 

Priority for these fellowships will be given to pre-tenured faculty.  Post-docs and graduate students may also submit applications.  Funding will be limited to one year for post-docs and graduate students.

Applicants for this fellowship may self-nominate or be nominated by their supporting institution.  Applicants must provide: (a) a professional vitae; (b) two samples of work and supporting images if applicable; (c) a 3-page (maximum) two-year research plan (one-year for post-docs and graduate students), which details how, as an AACSRE Emerging Fellow, the candidate will spend the resources allocated as a part of this program to support the creation and dissemination of innovative research or creative activity in the field of on-premise signs; and (d) a one page (maximum) budget for the research.  Recipients will be expected to attend and make presentations on their research during at least one academic conference during their fellowship. Additionally, recipients will present and discuss their research at the annual AACSRE board meeting (funding for travel to the board meeting will be provided by AACSRE outside of the Fellowship budget).

Applications will be due on or before April 1, 2021.  Applicants will be notified of the decision to award by May 15, 2021.  A report as to the expenditures and use of the funding will be required on May 14, 2022.  The decision to award letters will state the reasons impacting the decision, including the strengths and weaknesses of the applications submitted.  Unsuccessful applicants are invited apply again in subsequent years.

Successful applicants may begin work as early as May 15, 2021.  An AACSRE mentor will be assigned by the awards committee to help guide the Emerging Fellow.  All Fellows, if they desire, will be appointed and recognized as a Friend of AACSRE at the expiration of their fellowship and will be considered for membership as an AACSRE board member. Applications and/or questions should be directed to Marihelen Millar at marihelen@aacsre.org or telephone 513-405-5530.