MacArthur Fellows Program

Summary

The MacArthur Fellows Program, also known as the MacArthur Fellowship and colloquially called the "Genius Grant",[a] is a prize awarded annually by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation to typically between 20 and 30 individuals working in any field who have shown "extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction" and are citizens or residents of the United States.[5]

MacArthur Fellows Program
Sponsored byThe John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Date1981; 43 years ago (1981)
Websitehttps://www.macfound.org/programs/awards/fellows/

According to the foundation's website, "the fellowship is not a reward for past accomplishments but rather an investment in a person's originality, insight, and potential", but it also says such potential is "based on a track record of significant accomplishments". The current prize is $800,000 paid over five years in quarterly installments. Previously, it was $625,000. This figure was increased from $500,000 in 2013 with the release of a review[6] of the MacArthur Fellows Program. The award has been called "one of the most significant awards that is truly 'no strings attached'".[7]

The program does not accept applications. Anonymous and confidential nominations are invited by the foundation and reviewed by an anonymous and confidential selection committee of about a dozen people. The committee reviews all nominees and recommends recipients to the president and board of directors. Most new fellows first learn of their nomination and award upon receiving a congratulatory phone call. MacArthur Fellow Jim Collins described this experience in an editorial column of The New York Times.[3]

Marlies Carruth is the program's current director.[8]

Recipients

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Since 1981, 1131 people have been named MacArthur Fellows,[9] ranging in age from 18 to 82.[10]

In the five broad categories defined by the foundation, the breakdown for recipient focus is as follows: Arts 336; Humanities 170; Public Issues 257; STEM 335; and Social Sciences 120.[9]

Of the 965 terminal degrees earned by 928 fellows during the period 1981 through 2018, 540 (56%) are doctorates, with the Ph.D. accounting for 514 (53.3%). Ivy league schools awarded 306 (31.7%) degrees to 300 (32.3%) fellows.[11][12]

The award is made to individuals of varying educational background but among the 1131 fellowship awards through the class of 2023, the following ten institutions have the most alumni fellows:[9][13][14]

Institution Fellows (1981–2023)[9]
Harvard/Radcliffe 188
Yale 95
Berkeley 78
Princeton 71
Columbia/Barnard 65
MIT 48
Stanford 41
Chicago 40
Cornell 38
Oxford 35

1981

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Robert Penn Warren

1982

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Frank Wilczek

1983

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John Sayles

1984

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Michael H. Freedman

1985

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Marian Wright Edelman

1986

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Jack Horner

1987

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Robert Sapolsky

1988

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Max Roach

1989

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Errol Morris

1990

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Paul Ehrlich

1991

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Taylor Branch

1992

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Stephen Schneider

1993

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Amory Lovins

1994

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Ornette Coleman

1995

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Octavia Butler

1996

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Anna Deavere Smith

1997

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David Foster Wallace

1998

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Tim Berners-Lee

1999

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Alison Des Forges

2000

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Cecilia Muñoz

2001

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Lene Hau

2002

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Colson Whitehead

2003

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Jim Yong Kim

2004

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C. D. Wright

2005

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Jonathan Lethem

2006

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Regina Carter

2007

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Shen Wei

2008

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Regina Benjamin

2009

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Esther Duflo

2010

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Annette Gordon-Reed

2011

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Shwetak Patel

2012

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Junot Díaz

2013

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Tarell McCraney

2014

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Alison Bechdel

2015

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Ta-Nehisi Coates

2016

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Claudia Rankine

2017

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Jesmyn Ward

2018

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Doris Tsao

2019

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Lynda Barry

2020

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Jacqueline Woodson

2021

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Daniel Alarcón

2022

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Moriba Jah

2023

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Notes

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  1. ^ The MacArthur Foundation does not use the term "genius" to describe its fellows and has asked the media to stop using it.[1][2][3][4]

References

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  1. ^ "MacArthur Fellows Frequently Asked Questions". MacArthur Foundation. Retrieved 16 October 2023.
  2. ^ Conrad, Cecilia A. (20 September 2013). "Five Myths About the MacArthur 'Genius Grants'". MacArthur Foundation. Retrieved 16 October 2023.
  3. ^ a b Jim Collins (19 September 2005). "It isn't easy being a genius". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 18 April 2015. Retrieved 16 October 2023.
  4. ^ Viet Thanh Nguyen (14 April 2018). "Don't call me a genius". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 October 2023.
  5. ^ "MacArthur Fellows Strategy". MacArthur Foundation. Archived from the original on 2 April 2012. Retrieved 20 November 2015.
  6. ^ "Review Affirms Impact and Inspiration of MacArthur Fellows Program". MacArthur Foundation. 27 August 2013. Archived from the original on 29 November 2020. Retrieved 18 July 2016.
  7. ^ Harris, Dianne (2007). The Complete Guide to Writing Effective & Award-Winning Grants: Step-By-Step Instructions. Atlantic Publishing Company. pp. 85–86. ISBN 9781601380463. Archived from the original on 26 May 2013.
  8. ^ "Director - MacArthur Foundation".
  9. ^ a b c d "All Fellows". MacArthur Foundation. Retrieved 15 April 2023.
  10. ^ Corfu, Diane (May 2007). "Picking Winners". Harvard Business Review. Archived from the original on 7 May 2011.
  11. ^ Amadu Kaba (30 April 2020). MacArthur Fellows, 1981-2018: Gender, Race and Educational Attainment (Report). Vol. 10. Sociology Mind. ISSN 2160-083X.
  12. ^ Rachel Sugar (29 May 2015). "Where MacArthur 'Geniuses' Went to College". businessinsider.com. Retrieved 5 November 2020.
  13. ^ https://www.macfound.org/media/files/macarthur_fellows_program_article_reprint_-_does_alma_mater_really_matter_ol0ntbj.pdf
  14. ^ https://www.macfound.org/media/files/macarthur_fellows_-_undergraduate_degrees_1.pdf
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  16. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the December-1981 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 7 May 2015. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  17. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the August-1982 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 24 July 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  18. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the August-1983 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 7 May 2015. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  19. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the February-1983 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 1 February 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  20. ^ MacArthur Foundation. "Michael Lerner". MacArthur Fellows Program. Archived from the original on 18 October 2020. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  21. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the March-1984 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 20 December 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  22. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the November-1984 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 October 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  23. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1985 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 7 May 2015. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  24. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1986 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 7 May 2015. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  25. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1987 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 20 October 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  26. ^ "Williams, Eddie N. 1932–". encyclopedia.com. Archived from the original on 22 September 2015. Retrieved 13 September 2015.
  27. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1988 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 15 June 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  28. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1989 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 7 May 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  29. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1990 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 October 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  30. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1991 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 24 September 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  31. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1992 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 31 December 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  32. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1993 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 16 July 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  33. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1994 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 16 July 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  34. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1995 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 27 November 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  35. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1996 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 December 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  36. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1997 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 1 December 2012. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  37. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1998 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 29 July 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  38. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 1999 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 30 June 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  39. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2000 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 19 October 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  40. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2001 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 16 September 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  41. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2002 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 September 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  42. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2003 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 5 September 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  43. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2004 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 October 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  44. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2005 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  45. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2006 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 September 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  46. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2007 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  47. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2008 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 29 August 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  48. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2009 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  49. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2010 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  50. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2011 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  51. ^ The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. "Meet the 2012 MacArthur Fellows". Archived from the original on 2 July 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  52. ^ "Meet the 2013 MacArthur Fellows". MacArthur Foundation. Archived from the original on 25 September 2013.
  53. ^ "Meet the 2014 MacArthur Fellows". MacArthur Foundation. Archived from the original on 17 September 2014. Retrieved 17 September 2014.
  54. ^ "Kartik Chandran | Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science". Engineering.columbia.edu. Archived from the original on 3 October 2015. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
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  58. ^ "Meet the 2015 MacArthur Fellows". The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Archived from the original on 30 September 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  59. ^ "Class of 2016 – MacArthur Foundation". www.macfound.org. Archived from the original on 22 September 2016.
  60. ^ "Class of 2017 – MacArthur Foundation". www.macfound.org. Archived from the original on 15 January 2021. Retrieved 11 October 2017.
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  62. ^ She prefers that her name be uncapitalized. Kelly, John (26 September 2019). "Restorative Justice Leader sujatha baliga Named a MacArthur Genius". The Chronicle of Social Change. Retrieved 19 April 2023.
  63. ^ DeShong, Travis (25 September 2019). "MacArthur 'genius' grants launch winners from obscurity: 'Now I feel like I'm working with a face'". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 4 January 2022. Retrieved 8 March 2022.
  64. ^ McCarthy, Ellen (6 October 2020). "Proving good things can happen in 2020, the MacArthur Foundation names 21 new 'geniuses'". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 8 March 2022. Retrieved 8 March 2022.
  65. ^ McCarthy, Ellen (28 September 2021). "MacArthur will give 25 new fellows $625,000 each to pursue 'high-risk, high-reward' work". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 28 September 2021. Retrieved 28 September 2021.
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