Telephonic Supplychains Grants

For this project, significant sources of support will come in the form of soft money available through collaborations, in-kind support, and volunteer contributions. Some costs, particularly staffing, will need to be developed through the support of a mixture of private foundation funding and (to a larger extent) government funding sources.

Mellon Foundation, Scholarly Communications Program

The Mellon foundation scholarly communications program is a funding area this project is particularly suited for. In addition to targeting their interest in the general support of the digitization and presentation of archival materials, the project advances the foundation's goal of supporting collaborative scholarly work that serves a number of distinct communities. In targeting this funder, the goal is to emphasize the collaborative nature of the project and its ability to address multiple audiences in both supply chain studies and the history of technology.

The Alfred P. Sloan - History of Science and Technology Program

This program supports archival projects that preserve the historical record of "major technical and scientific events." There are some questions about the availability or this program (it is being restructured) but the stated goal (and funded projects) are a good fit. They have funded similar preservation projects with materials of a similar historic emphasis and technological focus, but they are not significantly involved in any project directly funding the history of telecommunications. In targeting this funder, the goal is to emphasize the compatibility of the project with their general interests, while suggesting that it offers a new technological focus that expands the reach of their work.

The EMC Corporation Foundation Heritage Trust Project.

This project supports the "digital stewardship" of world information heritage within local communities. They specifically identify "business" archives as a possible area of interest.

A possible avenue of application to this foundation is to emphasize community collaboration with corporate archives. As many corporate archives are dealing with economic hardship, and suggestions of a decreased relevance for corporate goals and initiatives, there are questions about their future. In considering the AT&T archives, a good argument can be made to support an increased community collaboration within New York City and New Jersey.

Other Funding Collaborations

The Smithsonian, particularly the National Museum of American History, houses a large collection of documents related to this project. Recent initiatives have created budgetary line-items to support the digitization of documents going forwards. Other possible funding organizations include the New York Council for the Humanities and the New Jersey Historical Commission.


The most significant costs for the project will be in terms of staffing. This includes the costs for the project manager, part-time assistant, student work (if not paid through work study programs provided by the university or for academic credit) and a technical consultant. Consulting and assistant costs are less flexible, projected at $20,000 (half time) and $10,000. It would be ideal to have additional funds for materials ($5,000) and student work ($10,000). Project manager costs are flexible.

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