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The ASAO Board is committed to making available to host Pacific Islands communities the information gathered from research there, and in forms appropriate and usable at the village level. This goes beyond the normal practice of providing copies of theses and dissertations and subsequent academic publications to in-country libraries or government agencies, although these may be useful for in-country scholars. Rather, it involves the preparation and delivery of materials targeted specifically for the village audience and to meet local needs. It is hoped that ASAO’s official acknowledgment and support will help raise the profile of and validate this practice in academia. This organizational imprimatur is especially important for junior scholars, who might otherwise not be accorded credit for such activities or publications in their formal tenure and promotion reviews.

The board delegated a special committee to explore and propose a program for encouraging and supporting such return of materials, and at the February 2006 meeting the board approved the following plan.


Applicants must be ASAO members for at least two years prior to submitting a proposal, and preference will be given to junior scholars. Examples of eligible projects include but are not limited to dictionaries, oral histories, biographies, photo books, interviews, and recordings of storytelling events and performances. The applicant is responsible for ensuring that the material being published is appropriate for the audience to whom it is being given.

Proposals of up to 1,000 words (4 double-spaced pages) must include descriptions of:

  • the island community, including its technological capacities
  • what materials are currently available there, and what kind(s) of materials the applicant is preparing
  • how the materials would be used in the community
  • most efficient way of getting materials to the community
  • anticipated expenses for production and delivery of materials (grant does not cover stipends, travel, or purchase of equipment)
  • possible additional sources of practical and monetary assistance that the applicant might tap

Application review process:

A three-member GRIKPIC panel appointed by the ASAO Board will review applications received by the deadline for awards to be given at the following year’s annual meeting. The panel will forward their recommendations to the Board for consideration. Applications for 2021 are not yet open and we will make an announcement later in the year about this.

Project completion:

Upon the completion of the project, the awardee must submit a report including how award funds were used; provide a presentation at the following ASAO annual meeting; and provide a copy of the materials to the ASAO archives as well as one or more copies to the national or university library in the country of the community involved.


Awards will be given in any year that at least one project meets criteria outlined above and is approved by the panel and the Board. Award amounts (whether for one or more projects) will total no more than US$1,000 per year.

Please note that financial donations may be made to ASAO in support of the GRIKPIC project (as with the Pacific Islands Scholars Fund [PISF]); all donations to ASAO are tax-deductible in the United States, since ASAO is a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation.

Donate to GRIKPIC

Contact Micah Van der Ryn ( for more information about the GRIKPIC.


(Click on awardee names to see full project descriptions)

2007 - Haidy Geismar awarded to help underwrite the publication of a Bislama-language publication, John Layard: long Malakula 1914-1915.

2010 - Lila San Roque awarded for the delivery of Duna (Yuna) language booklets to the Kopiago area (Papua New Guinea).

2012 - Kenneth Nehrbass awarded for the printing and distributing 100 copies of A Comprehensive Comparison of Lexemes in the Major Languages of Tanna, Vanuatu, a 281-page English-to-vernacular dictionary featuring six of Tanna's major languages. Available at:

2017 - Susanne Kuehling awarded for the returning of photographs of Kula valuables to island communities in Milne Bay Province, PNG.

2019 - Jen Shannon, Jerry K. Jacka, and Paige West awarded to provide copies of primary source materials collected from Bougainville Island in 1949 by a US soldier to members of the Kainake Project in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, PNG. Available at: