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The Collab joint venture represents a commitment to cultural and digital collaboration between the South Australian Museum, History Trust of South Australia, State Library of South Australia, Art Gallery of South Australia and most recently, the Adelaide Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium.  

Launched in 2020, the Collab Digital Cultural Fellowship establishes an opportunity for creative technologists to develop innovative ways for audiences to experience the rich digital cultural collections of each partner institution. Including a $10,000 honorarium, access to collections and specialist staff and office facilities from partner institutions, the Fellowship represents a unique opportunity to discover, connect and repurpose collection materials using digital technologies in experimental ways. 

The inaugural 2021 Collab Digital Cultural Fellowship was hotly contested, with the judging panel commenting on the extremely high calibre of applications. However the panel were unanimous in recommending the 2021 Fellowship be awarded to the Growing Data Foundation for their proposed project ‘Data Stories in a Climate of Change’. This project proposes a digital exemplar for the creation of rich data stories reflecting on cultural, historical, scientific, environmental and economic changes to the River Murray over time. 

The judges noted that as well as featuring an iconic and topical South Australian waterway, the project had great capacity to draw extensively on the collections of all five Collab institutions to tell uniquely South Australian stories of people, time and place. 

The winner of the 2021 Collab Fellowship, the Growing Data Foundation, was announced at a ceremony at Lot Fourteen, with the prize presented by the Chief Executive of the Department of Premier and Cabinet, Nick Reade.  

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Image caption: Directors, Board members and the Growing Data Foundation team at the Collab 2021 Fellowship announcement event, June 2021.