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Next funding round

Applications open on 15 July and close on 15 October every year.

About the fund

Whiria Te Mahara New Zealand History Grants are funded by the New Zealand History Research Trust Fund. The grants support historians, researchers and writers who are working on non-fiction projects that will significantly enhance our understanding of New Zealand’s past.

Every year the fund gives away between 8 and 12 grants of up to $12,000 each to fund research and writing costs. We usually receive around 60 to 80 applications.

Applications close on 15 October every year. A committee of senior historians from outside the Ministry recommend who will receive funding. We will let all applicants know if their application was successful by early December.

Who is eligible to apply

Any individual or group can apply. We are particularly keen to receive applications for projects dealing with Māori topics.

Traditionally, we have supported projects that produce print publications, such as books. We prefer funding book projects with a wide target readership, rather than academic journal articles.

We also consider digital formats such as web stories and online exhibitions, so long as the funding is only for the historical research and writing component, not the design and development costs.

If your topic is regional, or about your family, you are welcome to apply, but we need to know how the project would enhance understanding of New Zealand’s history.

What the funding covers

The funding can be used for any expenses related to the researching and writing process, such as:

  • travel costs (national or international) to visit archives and libraries
  • paying yourself a wage to undertake research or writing
  • equipment costs such as computers
  • research costs such as photocopying or buying photographs
  • a limited amount of oral history as part of the research for the project.

Note that if your project is mainly an oral history project, you should apply to the Ngā Kōrero Tuku Iho, New Zealand Oral History Grants, which we also administer.

Ngā Kōrero Tuku Iho, New Zealand Oral History Grants

What the funding doesn’t cover

  • The grants do not cover the following activities and costs:
  • costs relating to the publication or production of the work, for example book editing, design or printing, publicity costs or website production
  • work that has already been completed — the research and/or writing work on your project must be ongoing after the application closing date
  • collecting or arranging archival material or preparing databases
  • fiction, art or drama projects.
  • You are not eligible to apply if you are:
  • a tertiary student or staff member completing a project as part of your university work (unless you are undertaking a private project in your own time)
  • an employee of the Ministry for Culture and Heritage
  • a previous recipient who has not yet completed a project funded by the Trust.

Information you need to provide

The application form sets out all the information you need to provide. This includes:

  • a discussion of the significance of the project
  • a budget
  • the stage the project has reached
  • a brief outline of chapters
  • information about yourself.

You don’t need to send samples of your work, quotes or letters from referees.

Application forms are available in English or te Reo Māori.

More information

Other sources of funding


If you have questions or for more information email [email protected]