CPL Graduate Fellowship Grants

Project Eligibility | Applicant Eligibility | Compensation | Apply | Recipients | Updates

In an effort to encourage UC graduate students to study policy-relevant research topics, CPL invites applications for fellowships to work on research projects using California administrative data or other CPL datasets.

The fellowship grants will cover a student’s salary and, if applicable, fee remission for an entire semester/quarter or summer term. Graduate students may apply for themselves, and faculty may also apply and use the fellowship grant to fund a graduate student of their choosing. Fellowships may be renewable for students making demonstrable progress, pending funding availability. Preference will be given to cross-campus and interdisciplinary research.

What Projects are Eligible?

Fellowship projects must make use of California administrative data. Check out our California Data Roadmap for a good place to start. We encourage fellows to make use of the data and agency relationships already developed by CPL, including:

State Agencies

Department of Social Services
Community college system
Franchise Tax Board
Department of Justice
Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

Los Angeles agencies

Homeless Services Authority
Department of Public Social Services
Info Hub (formerly known as Enterprise Linkages Project)
And more

Other counties

Sonoma County — linked data from several departments (health, behavioral health, homelessness, criminal justice, social services)
San Francisco — linked data from several departments (criminal justice, health, behavioral health)

Other datasets

Medicare and Medicaid data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), available under the Health Data Access Initiative (HDAI)
LA’s homelessness management information system (HMIS) data available under the Homelessness Research Accelerator Data Hub
Consumer credit data available in the University of California Consumer Credit Panel (UC-CCP)

Importantly, student project ideas do not always align with agency priorities, and CPL cannot guarantee that any desired project will launch. But we may be helpful in getting projects off the ground. If you have questions about potential projects, reach out to gradfellowships@capolicylab.org.

Who is Eligible?

We encourage applications from graduate students currently enrolled in Masters or PhD programs at any of the UC campuses.

Faculty are eligible to submit ideas, though the fellowship will go to the graduate student who works on the selected project.

With a mission to improve the lives of a diverse population, CPL recognizes the value of diversity in everything our organization does. We especially encourage applications from students or faculty of color and members of marginalized communities.

Fellows will work independently from CPL staff. We will provide financial support and, in some cases, infrastructural support.


Starting with the fall 2021 fellows, students will receive a stipend of $10,000, depending on funding availability. Stipends will generally be arranged through their home department.

How to Apply?

Apply by submitting this form. Deadlines are 12pm on the following dates through the end of 2024, when funding expires. If the date falls on a weekend, applications are due the following Monday. Application review may take up to 6 weeks.

March 31st
June 30th
September 30th
December 31st

The number of fellowships available each year will vary, but will generally be between 5 and 10.

Graduate Fellowships Awarded for Fall 2021

Christopher Giamarino, a PhD student at UCLA, for a project entitled “A services not sweeps approach: A spatial ethnography of homelessness and policing in Los Angeles.” Christopher will be using data from LA’s homelessness management information system (HMIS) available under the Homelessness Research Accelerator Data Hub.

Eva Lyubich, UC Berkeley, for her project entitled “The Relationship Between Energy Burden, Economic Insecurity, and Race” (also awarded a Seed Grant). Eva will be using data from the California Public Utility Commission, California Department of Social Services, and the UC Consumer Credit Panel.

Zachary Sauers, UCLA, for his project entitled “The Relationship Between Student Debt and Urban Relocation.” Zachary will be using data from the California Department of Education and UC Consumer Credit Panel.

Graduate Fellowships Awarded for Summer 2021

Nicole Perales, PhD candidate at UC Berkeley, for a project entitled “Program Effectiveness in California’s Child Welfare System.”

Woongchan Jeon, PhD Candidate at UC Santa Barbara, for a project entitled “The distributional impacts of wildfires on household balance sheets in the Western United States.’ Woongchan also received a CPL Seed Grant.

Sandy Sum, PhD student at UC Santa Barbara, for a project entitled “Groundwater contamination and adverse health outcomes in California.”

Aria Golestani, PhD student at UC Irvine, for a project entitled “Silenced: Consequences of the Nuisance Property Ordinances.”

Receive Updates

This program and other opportunities are promoted via the CPL newsletter www.capolicylab.org/newsletter-signup


Reach out to gradfellowships@capolicylab.org.


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