Dorris D. and Christine M. Brown Fellowship

The Brown Graduate Research Fellowship Program is made possible through a generous gift of Dorris and Christine Brown.

Dorris Brown graduated from the University of Missouri College of Agriculture in 1935. After working as a University extension county agent and extension economist for 15 years, he completed a PhD in agricultural economics and extension administration at Harvard University. Prior to his death in 1991, Brown’s career included a broad range of overseas service, including an eight-year assignment with the Ford Foundation in India and eight years as a senior agricultural economist with the World Bank.

Christine Miller Brown graduated from the University of Missouri School of Journalism in 1933. During her career, she was a portrait painter, art teacher and illustrator of books.

The Browns’ desire to create a mechanism to allow U.S. students to obtain international experiences as part of their graduate education led to the creation of the Brown Research Fellowship, which is a part of the International Agriculture Development Program.

Fellowship Purpose

The purpose of the Brown Fellowship is to stimulate interest among U.S. graduate students in developing an international dimension to their career goals. Fellowship funds are provided to enable talented graduate students to gather research data and to experience the culture and institutional structures of agriculture outside the United States.

A strong international dimension is essential for the College to fulfill its traditional role of providing a competitive edge to Missouri citizens in an increasingly complex agricultural marketplace. The fellowships seek to diversify and strengthen the College’s research program, while broadening and enriching the educational experience of the selected fellows.

Research on a broad range of topics in the food, agricultural and natural resource sciences will be considered for support, although preference will be given to proposals which seek to explore problems in international trade and development.

Due to the special purpose of the Brown Fellowship Program, only applications from College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources graduate students who are U.S. citizens will be considered.

Additionally it is limited to students pursuing a research degree (i.e. a thesis master’s or PhD).

Fellowship Provisions

The funding available through the fellowship must be used for international travel and research costs, and may not be used for other purposes, such as providing a student stipend or payment of fees. Awards will be variable, but will not exceed $7,500. Special consideration will be accorded proposals that seek or provide funding in addition to the Brown Fellowship.

In building a budget to accompany the proposal, applicants are urged to economize. For example, simply using U.S. federal government per diem rates as a means of estimating costs will not be viewed favorably. With limited resources, there is a desire to fund as many proposals as possible.

The recipient of a Brown Research Fellowship must agree to document the research experience and submit a report summarizing the research results within 90 days of their return.


Graduate students and their advisers who wish to submit a proposal must do so by March 10 or October 10 of each year. Proposals should not be more than 10 double-spaced typed pages (12 point font and excluding reference list, CV and adviser letter) and must contain:

  • A statement of the research project’s goals and objectives, and how it will contribute to the applicant’s career more generally.
  • Proposals should include (at least in partial form) a statement of the problem, objectives, literature review and methods.
  • A research plan for satisfying those goals and objectives, including a detailed timetable to assess progress. The project should be of significant length to allow for a meaningful in-country experience. For example, one week would not be considered significant. Activities that will contribute to learning about the culture, agricultural system and institutions of the country also need to be explained.
  • A statement of the expected contribution that an international research experience will provide to meet the stated goals and objectives, (e.g. a clear statement of the expected outputs for the project).
  • A proposed budget and budget justification*.
  • A reference list, which may be single-spaced.
  • A current CV for the applicant.
  • A letter from the applicant’s faculty adviser, explaining the role of the proposed research in terms of the overall degree program.

*Brown Fellowship recipients are required to purchase a student accident and sickness insurance policy for the duration of travel. All proposed budgets for the Brown Fellowship should include a separate line item for this insurance and should be estimated at $35 per month (partial month same as whole month).

Electronic submissions of proposals by email to Contact information is:

Prof. Laura McCann
212 Mumford Hall
University of Missouri
Columbia, MO