NMA ANU Summer Scholars Program 2023

NMA ANU Summer Scholars Program 2023
Aerial view of the National Museum of Australia on Acton Peninsula, Canberra. Photo courtesy of the National Museum of Australia.
Thursday 18 August 2022

The National Museum of Australia in partnership with the Humanities Research Centre at the Australian National University is delighted to offer a Summer Scholars program for 2023.


The scheme provides three scholarships for students who are in the third or fourth year of an undergraduate degree or undertaking early-stage postgraduate program (normally Masters but including students enrolled in first year of PhD).

Scholars are expected to be in attendance in Canberra from 16 January to 24 February 2023.

The program is most suited to students enrolled in history, museum, anthropology, material culture, environmental or Indigenous studies, however applications from students specialising in any HASS field relevant to the nominated project themes will be considered. We are particularly interested in applications from students interested in exploring non-traditional research outcomes (e.g. a digital/web-based public communication-oriented output).

Applicants will need an excellent academic record and referee report, as well as an ability to think imaginatively and work collaboratively. While a background in museums or collections-based research is not essential, you will need a willingness to engage with the subject. If cultural history is your interest, you will gain invaluable experience by working with some of Australia's leading experts in the field and gaining unique access to our core research sites, resources, and networks.

Each scholar will be allocated a project relating to the NMA or HRC’s research interests. For six weeks, you will work across the resources and facilities of both institutions to develop a research outcome. At the end of the scholarship period scholars will deliver a short public presentation, blog post and submit a written report (or equivalent research outcome) on their project. Scholars wanting to submit a digital production instead of a written report must be able to create and produce the work in their own right. No NMA or HRC production resources are available. Each scholar will be allocated a primary supervisor from either the NMA or ANU to oversee their research.

Research project themes for 2023:

  • A cultural history of activism, protest and reform in Australia (any period)
  • The Vietnamese refugee experience 1975-2025
  • Indigenous cultural collections and connections to communities and country
  • Collecting Australia’s movement for climate action
  • An investigation of Australia’s early Antarctic history (1930s) with particular reference to state and national Antarctic collections
  • How can the NMA better understand and explore the role and relevance of design across collections, and present these ideas as part of the social history and culture of Australia?

Scholars outside the ACT will be provided with accommodation for the scholarship period (16 January – 24 February 2023). ACT scholars are expected to stay in their own homes.

A travel bursary is also available to non-ACT scholars to contribute to the cost of travel to and from Canberra. Current travel rates may mean that the full cost is not completely covered by the bursary.

All scholars will be paid an honorarium of $600 per week for the duration of the scholarship (provided they are not in receipt of a regular, full-time income).

The application will require:

  1. A short biographical statement (300-400 words max)
  2. A current Academic Transcript
  3. A short piece of recent writing or digital work (either academic or public)
  4. One academic letter of reference

Applications will open on 5 September 2022 and close on 14 October 2022.
Please visit our Pre-doctoral Research page after 5 September to download the application form.

For further information or inquiries, please contact:

Professor Kylie Message
Head, Humanities Research Centre
Australian National University

Ms Libby Stewart
Senior Curator, Research and Partnerships
National Museum of Australia

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Updated:  22 August 2022/Responsible Officer:  Head, Centre/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications