Science at the NDIAS

The Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study offers academic scientists at all ranks the opportunity to explore research projects in relation to a range of ethical, philosophical, social, and theological questions raised by their research. Fellows live and work in a dynamic, interdisciplinary community where they are encouraged to incorporate questions of value, purpose, meaning, and method in their research. As a result, Fellows have the opportunity to enrich their projects by integrating valuable perspectives and insights from other disciplines and to advance their findings in new or more expansive directions.

The Institute’s signature weekly seminars allow fellows to formulate and discuss their research project with a diverse audience, a unique opportunity in a modern academy that trends toward disciplinary confinement and often leaves little time for discussion of the broad implications of one’s research. These conversations are further enriched by the Institute’s robust academic programming, including book seminars, research colloquia, and visits by top scholars.

Fellowships include academic year stipends of up to $90,000, subsidized housing, and a private office at the NDIAS. Fellows live and work in a residential academic community at the University of Notre Dame where they have extensive opportunities for engagement with faculty and advanced students from the College of Science and departments across the university.

At the NDIAS, Fellows enjoy the freedom to pursue their scientific research on fundamental questions no matter where the truth may lead, including opportunities to pursue the relationship of their research to religion and other viewpoints. Fellows work and interact with colleagues from other disciplines, in ways not always possible in more traditional academic positions. At the NDIAS, all Fellows will find an enduring commitment to knowledge, a sustained focus on questions that matter, and an ongoing effort to shed new light on these questions through disciplinary integration.

For 2020-2021, the NDIAS is especially interested in projects related to the theme of trust, though projects on other topics related to questions of ethics, value, meaning, or purpose are also encouraged. More details can be found on our fellowships page.

Residential Fellowship Online Application

Featured Science Fellows

  • Eric J. Chaisson

    Harvard University; Smithsonian Institution

    "Giving Back: Cosmology Applications for Human Society"

    The NDIAS twice-weekly seminars were wonderful—the best part of the fellowship program. The format is excellent and the NDIAS Director’s moderating was brilliant. I much enjoyed the talks, the discussions, and the follow-up interactions with fellows after each seminar. These seminars were collectively the high point of my fellowship."
  • Daniel B. Hinshaw

    University of Michigan

    "Kenosis and the Mystery of Life"

    The ability to interact with scholars from such diverse backgrounds in a setting which was entirely conducive to interdisciplinary exchange of ideas was a delight. It was a powerful catalyst for creative thought. My project has been deeply enriched by the exposure to so many great minds – it should yield a better and hopefully compelling book as a result."
  • Jessica Hellmann

    University of Minnesota

    “Adapting to Climate Change: Managing Ecosystems in an Era of Human Culpability”

    The experiences I had as a fellow at NDIAS make me a better scientist. They help me in the classroom, they help me be a better colleague, they help me interact with the world in a more effective way, and they make the work that we do more relevant to society and more useful to the world."
  • Harvey Brown

    University of Oxford
    Philosopher of Physics

    "The Meaning of Probability in Physics"
    "Probability and Entropy"

    The Institute for Advanced Study here at Notre Dame is a kind of Oxbridge College on steroids because we are thrown together in a very intimate way with various fellows with diverse research backgrounds. We listen to each other’s work and we frequently meet outside of the seminars and indeed very frequently socialize together outside the Institute. And for me, it is really a remarkable experience getting to know what my fellow Fellows are doing and how they approach their problems. It is truly interdisciplinary."


  • Do you work in the sciences and want to make the implications of your research accessible to a broad audience?
  • Would your scientific research benefit from the feedback of faculty working in diverse disciplines?
  • Are you a scientist looking to explore the broad range of fundamental questions raised by your research?

The NDIAS may offer you a distinctive community in which to pursue your research project. To learn more about our fellowship opportunities, please visit

Please direct questions to Kristian Olsen, NDIAS Fellowships, Outreach, and Operations Program Manager, at

Residential Fellowship Online Application