Awards |

Lorena De la Puente Burlando Awarded 2024 Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Innovation Fellowship

The Institute of the Environment and Sustainability is proud to announce that Lorena De la Puente Burlando has been awarded a 2024 Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Innovation Fellowship. The program supports doctoral students in the humanities and interpretive social sciences as they pursue bold and innovative approaches to dissertation research. 

The American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) launched the program in 2023 with the support of the Mellon Foundation to advance a vision for doctoral education that prioritizes openness to new methods and sources, underrepresented voices and perspectives, and scholarly experimentation. The awards are designed to accelerate change in the norms of humanistic scholarship by recognizing those who take risks in the modes, methods, and subjects of their research.

De la Puente Burlando has been recognized as one of 45 awardees, selected from a pool of more than 700 applicants through a rigorous, interdisciplinary peer review process. De la Puente Burlando’s research focuses on supporting two community coalitions as they dispute with Governments the potential outcomes of lithium extraction in Puno, Peru, and Imperial County, California. The project collaborates with Latinx and indigenous organizations to unravel how they resist “speculative extractivism,” a phenomenon affecting the institutions behind the mineral foundations of the energy transition.

“We look forward to following the progress of these remarkable emerging scholars as they explore new research methodologies, forge collaborative partnerships in the co-creation of knowledge, and engage new audiences for humanistic scholarship,” said John Paul Christy, Senior Director of US Programs at ACLS. “Each of these awards is an opportunity for the sector to learn about approaches to fostering the evolution of doctoral education.”

Each fellow receives an award of up to $50,000, consisting of a $40,000 stipend for the fellowship year; up to $8,000 for project-related research, training, professional development, and travel expenses; and a $2,000 stipend to support external mentorship that offers new perspectives on the fellow’s project and expands their advising network. With fellows pursuing their research across the country and beyond, ACLS will also provide opportunities for virtual networking and scholarly programming throughout the fellows’ award terms.