Clemson International Institute for Tourism Research & Development

Sources of Funding for Tourism Research

US Agencies | Southeast region institutes/centers | SC Agencies | State Agencies | International | Fellowships | Foundations | other lists

U.S. Agencies
U.S. Federal funding - includes USAID, USDA, NPS, Forest Service, Dept. of Commerce (NOAA, ITA), NIH, etc.; source for federal register notices; searchable database and grant submission site (see Agency list)

National Endowment for Humanities
NEH is an independent grant-making agency of the United States government dedicated to supporting research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities.

National Science Foundation
Also see Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences

Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service. Categories include agricultural systems; education; economics and commerce; family, youth and communities; natural resources and environment. Funding site posts open and closed opportunities and deadlines.

USDA Rural Development - includes links to State Offices; Funding opportunities are noted via Business and Cooperative programs website - also see Cooperative funding opportunities

US Dept. of Commerce, Office of Travel and Tourism Industries, International Trade Administration,
Functions include management of the travel and tourism statistical system for assessing the economic contribution of the industry and providing the sole source for characteristic statistics on international travel to and from the United States; design and administration of an international promotion program and export expansion activities; development and management of tourism policy, strategy and advocacy; and technical assistance for expanding this key export (international in-bound tourism) and assisting in domestic economic development. May provide cooperative grant opportunities.

US Department of Transportation - National Scenic Byways Program

Southeast Region Centers, Institutes, Foundations

Coastal Community Foundation of South Carolina - provides funding to charitable organizations. See:

Southern Rural Development Center - Grant Connections
The SRDC staff compiles Grant Connections primarily for the faculty of land grant colleges and universities in the South to provide funding information in support of activities in agricultural economics, education, human sciences, rural sociology, youth development, and other related disciplines. Grant Connections is produced on a periodic basis and as special opportunities present themselves.

SC Arts Commission Grants Programs
The SC Arts Commission has established a Cultural Tourism Initiative to support projects and partnerships that positively impact artistically based cultural tourism. This initiative builds upon the SC Arts Commission strategic plan for the arts which has the broader aim of "Improving the state's cultural resources" and "Improving the conditions for economic growth".

The Humanities Council SC
The Humanities Council SC offers mini, planning, major, and resource grant opportunities.

South Carolina State Agencies

South Carolina Budget and Control Board - competitive grants

South Carolina Dept. of Commerce - also see: grant opportunities for community development

South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium

State Departments of Commerce, Community and Economic Development, and/or Tourism


Alaska Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development



Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development

Georgia Department of Industry, Trade, and Tourism

Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism

Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity

Indiana Economic Development Corporation

Iowa Department of Economic Development, Travel Iowa Website - Iowa Life changing website may periodically have community development RFPs

Kansas Commerce

Louisiana Department of Economic Development

Maryland Dept. of Business and Economic Development - also see Office of Tourism

Massachusetts Executive Office of Economic Development.

Michigan Dept. of Labor and Economic Growth

Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development

Mississippi Dept. of Economic and Community Development

Missouri Department of Economic Development

Nebraska Department of Economic Development

New Hampshire Department of Resources and Economic Development - also see State of New Hampshire Economic Development online

New Jersey Dept. of Commerce

New Mexico Economic Development Department See RFPs

(New York) Empire State Development - includes RFPs such as Restore NY Communities (grants to municipalities)

North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center - grant programs

Ohio Department of Development

Oregon Economic and Community Development Dept.

Pennsylvania Dept. of Community and Economic Development - Funding & Program finder

South Carolina (see SC Agencies)

Tennessee Department of Economic & Community Development

Texas - Economic Development and Tourism - also see Travel Texas website

Utah Department of Community and Economic Development

Vermont - Agency of Commerce & Community Development - also see Dept. of Tourism and Marketing

Washington State Department of Community, Trade & Economic Development


Ministries of Tourism

European Union
European Commission's searchable grants database for the European Union. See Enterprise and Industry program (announcement is in Spring/May); and Education and Training and EACEA ( Education, Audiovisual and Culture Agency Executive Agency).

Scottish Affairs Office in USA - strategies include increasing US tourism to Scotland

Welcomeurope - tourism sector
- EU gateway (most RFPs can only be viewed by paid members of this grant funding site). Also see EU funding calls (also members only)


AMIDEAST - private, nonprofit organization that strengthens mutual understanding and cooperation between Americans and the peoples of the Middle East and North Africa. Every year, AMIDEAST provides English language and professional skills training, educational advising, and testing services to hundreds of thousands of students and professionals in the Middle East and North Africa; supports numerous institutional development projects in the region; and administers educational exchange programs.


American Express - Cultural Heritage Grants

BMW Manufacturing Co. - BMW Manufacturing Co. partners with community organizations focusing on education, social and community improvement issues and cultural arts.

Ceres Foundation - focus on programs that aim to produce permanent improvements in peoples' lives by means of short-term interventions; currently (2/07 - 11/07) restricting attention to applicants located on the West Coast or on the Eastern Seaboard of the U.S.; make grants throughout the year, and applications may be sent at any time; their year ends in November, at which time they review applications that have been set aside for further consideration.

Kellogg Foundation - programs include food and rural development, youth and education, Southern Africa, Latin America and Caribbean.

Knight Foundation - Priorities include community and economic development. See what we fund.

Farm Foundation - Farm Foundation works to improve the economic and social well being of U.S. agriculture, the food system and rural communities. Serving as a catalyst, we partner with private and public organizations, sponsoring multi-state or national conferences and workshops that address economic and policy issues critical to agriculture and rural people. Farm Foundation does not fund indirect costs, research projects, ongoing or proposed program implementation costs, or local projects.

Ford Foundation - The Ford Foundation is an independent nonprofit grant-making organization. We make grants in all 50 U.S. states and in many countries around the world.

Getty Foundation - Campus Heritage Grants assist colleges and universities in the United States to manage and preserve the integrity of their significant historic buildings, sites, and landscapes.

Henry Luce Foundation - The American Art Program focuses on American fine and decorative art and is committed to scholarship and the overall enhancement of American art history.

National Fish and Wildlife Foundation - The Foundation awards matching grants to projects that address priority actions promoting fish and wildlife conservation and the habitats on which they depend, work proactively to involve other conservation and community interests, leverage Foundation-provided funding, and evaluate project outcomes. The Foundation administers a number of special grant programs with specific guidelines and time-lines.

Palmetto Conservation - interests include military heritage preservation

Michelin Community Relations - Michelin Community Relations strives to build partnerships with the organizations that seek to benefit our communities. We give the highest priority to organizations in our core focus areas of education, mobility safety and environment.

Norfolk Southern Foundation - Priorities are educational programs, primarily at the post-secondary level; community enrichment focusing on cultural and artistic organizations; and environmental programs. Grants are awarded only to eligible organizations located within Norfolk Southern Corporation territory that are described under either Section 170 (c)(1) or Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Grants may be awarded for specific projects or programs, including capital projects.

Rockefeller Foundation - We seek high-impact ideas that have the potential to make a difference in the lives of large numbers of poor or vulnerable people and we require some results from such ideas to be measurable within three to five years.

Starr Foundation - The Foundation has made significant grants since its inception both to large cultural institutions such as museums and to small, community-based arts groups providing special services to specific populations, such as the elderly and the disabled.

W.M. Keck Foundation - The W.M. Keck Foundation views a liberal arts education as one that provides rigorous undergraduate training across the range of traditional liberal arts subjects in the social sciences, natural sciences and humanities, with an emphasis on intellectual openness, sound reasoning and effective problem-solving.

William Randolph Hearst Foundations - The Hearst Foundations support programs that enrich the lives of young people by engaging them in cultural activities, primarily through arts-in-education programs.

Other Lists of Funding Sources

Coastal Community Foundation list of funding resources for SC non-profits

Environmental Grant Makers Association (