Visiting PhD Scholar Marie-Gabrielle Verbergt looks back at four weeks in Leiden

Between the 21st of February and 18th of March 2022, Marie-Gabrielle Verbergt (Ghent University) spent four weeks as a visiting PhD scholar with the “Scholarly Vices – A Longue Durée History” team at the Institute for History in Leiden. Her own dissertation project deals with the history of European-level funding for historical research between the 1970s and today (expected defense in November 2023). Among other cases, Marie-Gabrielle looks at the funding awarded to historians by the European Science Foundation and the European Research Council.

More specifically, Marie-Gabrielle’s research aims at unboxing “the black box of funding”, questioning how and by whom decisions about the awarding of European grants for historical research have been made. Like several of the Scholarly Vices project members, she works with sources that include strong evaluative language. “I wanted to come to Leiden to be surrounded by people who know what it is like to use these sources,” says Marie-Gabrielle. “Also, I think the concept of scholarly vices and virtues is very useful for thinking about how science is organized and which ideals drive that organization.”

Marie-Gabrielle looks back on a successful visit to Leiden: “Herman and his team really helped me to think about the role of entrepreneurial virtues in project funding, as well as longer-term changes in how historians present themselves to funding agencies. Overall, my time in Leiden was very fruitful and pleasant. Not only have I enjoyed getting to know everyone and felt very welcome, I also have a much firmer grasp on how I want to tell the story of changing funding practices and institutions I am researching.”