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The Ismar Elbogen Scholarship

The Ernst Ludwig Ehrlich Scholarship Fund (ELES), in cooperation with the Leo Baeck Institute New York (LBI), is pleased to announce the international Ismar Elbogen Scholarship. The program is directed at doctoral students of various disciplines working on a dissertation related to the history and culture of German-speaking Jewry and includes a 6-12 month research stay at the Center for Jewish History at LBI in New York.

The international scholarship program receives its name from the German-Jewish scholar and Rabbi Ismar Elbogen, who emigrated to the USA in 1938 and became one of the most influential figures in the Jewish community in New York. Elbogen worked and was active in institutions including the Jewish Theological Seminary, the Hebrew Union College, the Jewish Institute of Religion, and Dropsie College. His most prominent works include Jewish Liturgy: A Comprehensive History (1913), Geschichte der Juden in Deutschland (1935) and Century of Jewish Life (1944).

The Leo Baeck Institute in New York, with its more than 80,000 volumes, constantly expanding archive, and unique art collections, is the most significant collection site of primary sources and research materials on Jewish communities in Central Europe.

The possibility of a 6-12 month research stay at the Center for Jewish History at LBI in New York is a part of the support provided to the Ismar Elbogen Sholarship Program recipients. Along with having access to the globally unique archive on European Jewry, the doctoral students gain insights into LBI’s diverse educational work and also have the opportunity to participate in working on the institute’s current exhibitions and projects. Participation in the Leo Baeck Institute’s public events also enables the scholarship holders to build networks within American academia, strengthening connections between the Jewish communities in the US and Germany.

The scholarship holders are provided with a work space. The Center for Jewish History also offers them the possibility to take part in seminars and talks, thus connecting them with scholarship holders of other CJH partner organizations, as well as the chance to present their own work.

Jewish scholarship holders can also benefit from the diversity of Jewish life in New York at the Bronfman Center at New York University (NYU). During their stay, the participants additionally have two experienced academic advisors with connections to ELES at their sides.

The scholarship holders of the Ismar Elbogen Scholarship Program are a part of ELES’ support of doctoral students. Selection of scholarship recipients is conducted in line with the guidelines for supporting talented young academics set out by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). The selection is made by two expert reviewers from the ELES selection commission and by a representative of LBI New York.

Application Requirements

  • Highly above-average university results
  • Doctoral project relating to the history and culture of Central European Jewry
  • Willingness to play an active role in the ELES Academy Abroad New York

The application process is a part of the support to doctoral students provided by the Ernst Ludwig Ehrlich Scholarship Fund. Applications are due by April 30th or October 31st every year. Applications are accepted via the ELES applicant portal (eles-studienwerk.de).

Application Materials

  • Completed application form
  • A five to ten page exposé of the dissertation project making clear the connection between the applicant’s academic goals and a research stay at LBI New York
  • A letter of motivation explaining the applicant’s interest in participating in the program
  • An academic assessment from the dissertation supervisor
  • A written reference from a representative of a Jewish institution
  • CV
  • Short biography (max. 3500 characters)
  • University degree certificate/transcript (in copy)