The National Academy of Education announces a program of ten early career research grants. The Equity in Math Education Research Grants (EMERG) Program supports individual research projects focused on reconceptualizing the foundations of equitable and ambitious mathematical experiences for K-12 learners, specifically for populations who have historically not had access to such opportunities. For purposes of the EMERG Program, these include learners from traditionally underserved populations (African-American, Latine, Indigenous communities) and from communities experiencing persistent inter-generational poverty. The ten EMERG Scholars will have their proposed ideas challenged and cultivated by a network of mid-career and senior scholars and practitioners. Together, the EMERG Scholars and their advisors will form a powerful research community and participate in the design of a conceptual framework to improve our current knowledge of how learners from those communities achieve mathematical “proficiency,” broadly conceived. While addressing learners’ content knowledge and participation in disciplinary practices, the proposed framework will also move the field forward in addressing students’ mathematical agency and intersectional identities. It is our hope that this conceptual framework will set the stage for the next wave of mathematics education research.


1. Foster the professional development of a cadre of early career scholars whose research focuses on fostering successful mathematics learning, development, and participation for historically underserved students from African American, Latine, Indigenous, and low-income communities.

2. Cultivate a community of emergent, mid-career, and senior scholars who will usher in new approaches to mathematics education research that will lead to fundamental transformations in the experiences of target learner communities.

3. Develop a conceptual framework that guides future research and leads to forms of mathematics education that are worthy of all students but especially those that have been under-served by existing structures.

4. Strengthen the evidence informing the K-12 strategy for supporting mathematics learning for learners from these communities, through both individual EMERG Scholars’ projects and the full community’s conceptual framework.

Danny Martin, University of Illinois Chicago (Co-Chair)
Judit Moschkovich, University of California, Santa Cruz (Co-Chair)
Alan Schoenfeld, University of California, Berkeley (Co-Chair)
Kyndall Brown, California Mathematics Project
Elham Kazemi, University of Washington
Karen Mayfield-Ingram, Lawrence Hall of Science
Na’ilah Nasir, Spencer Foundation
William F. Tate IV, Louisiana State University
Carol Lee, Northwestern University (Ex-Officio)



The application is currently closed


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Meet our network of expert advisors to guide EMERG scholars through the program!



The Equity in Math Education Research Grants (EMERG) Program is open to all eligible applicants regardless of race, national origin, religion, gender, age, disability, or sexual orientation.

  • Only individual applications will be accepted. Applicants must apply through their institution’s sponsored programs office.
  • Applicants must have received their PhD, EdD, or equivalent after January 1, 2016. Tenured and non-tenured candidates may apply.
  • Applications are encouraged from scholars with shared racial, ethnic, language, and/or cultural backgrounds with target learner populations: African-American, Latine, Indigenous, and from communities experiencing persistent inter-generational poverty. Additionally, applicants should have demonstrated commitment to the learning, development, and participation of learners in these communities, as well as experience working with them, either as a researcher and/or a practitioner.
  • The proposed project must be a research project.
  • Applicants must be affiliated with a university or research center in the United States.
  • Applicants may not be employees of the BMGF or the NAEd.


  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Institutional letter of Commitment
  • Project Description/Narrative
  • Personal Statement
  • References
  • Example of Past Research Relevant to Math Education
  • Budget proposal
  • Current Commitments


  • September 28, 2023: Deadline for Applications
  • December 2023: Finalists selected and announced.
  • March 6-8, 2024, Washington DC: The EMERG Scholars will meet with members of the Executive Board to discuss their research projects, design the experience, and participate in professional development activities.
  • June 2024/September 2024: First award payment disbursed to institution.
  • November 6-8, 2024, Washington DC: EMERG Scholars meet in-person with the Executive Board for community building, mentoring, conceptual framework development.
  • June 2025/September 2025: Second award payment disbursed to institution.
  • Fall 2025 (dates TBD), Washington DC: Scholars present a formal in-person status update to the Executive Board, who will provide suggestions for future extensions of this research.
  • June 2026 (dates and location TBD): Scholars convene for a final presentation to the Executive Board.

In addition to the four in-person convenings, EMERG Scholars will participate in quarterly virtual meetings with mentors and the full EMERG community (dates TBD).


Please Contact:
Abigail Bell
Director, Special Projects

The forthcoming projects are based on research funded by (or in part by) the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The findings and conclusions contained within are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect positions or policies of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Funders are not involved in research selections.

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