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National Library Digital Fellowship

National Library Digital Fellowship

The National Library Digital Fellowship is a programme to support research in the emerging field of digital humanities using the collections of the National Library, Singapore (NLS) and the National Archives of Singapore (NAS).

The NLS is the custodian of Singapore’s documentary and published heritage. Our core collections offer a wealth of information for studying the contemporary and historical developments of Singapore and the region. The NAS holds records of national or historical significance acquired from public agencies, private sources, and overseas institutions and archives.

We are keen to collaborate with scholars and researchers on projects that apply digital technologies and computational methods to yield fresh insights into the history, arts and culture of Singapore and Southeast Asia.


Research Area

We welcome applicants to propose projects that make effective and meaningful use of digital tools and methods to demonstrate the possibilities of learning and researching with our collections. This could involve text, visual and/or audio analysis, data visualisation, mapping, digital storytelling and so on.

Applicants are encouraged to propose ways of using both our digital collections and physical collections.

Projects could explore and map the connections between collection items and content to reveal new insights on a topic, for example, an event, time period, individual(s) and/or social group, in Singapore history.

Projects could also enrich information about collection items, e.g. crowdsourced annotation, image processing, and/or enable the community to discover and interact with collection items in new ways.

Areas of research include but are not limited to the following:

  • Place histories in Singapore
  • History and networks of early communities in Singapore
  • Analysis of Singapore newspapers
  • Comparative study of early Singapore/Malayan publications, e.g. patterns of language use and/or themes in literature
  • Social history through photographs, oral histories and other relevant collections


Who Can Apply?

The Digital Fellowship is open to both local and foreign applicants.

Applicants may be individuals or collectives (two persons making a joint application). Only one application is accepted per individual/collective.

The Library welcomes applications from librarians, curators, historians, academics or independent researchers with established records of achievement in their chosen fields of research. Applicants pursuing doctoral, postdoctoral or advanced research are also encouraged to apply.

Applicants should have the requisite digital skills to carry out and complete the project.


Terms of the Award

The award of the Fellowship is for a period of six months.

A stipend of S$3,000 per month will be provided to help Fellows meet their living expenses, local transportation and photocopying expenses.

In addition to the stipend, overseas Fellows will be provided with a one-time relocation package of $1,500, a one-time return airfare of up to $1500 (reimbursement basis), and monthly accommodation allowance of up to $2,500 (reimbursement basis).

Fellows will be provided with up to $1,500 (on reimbursement basis) for the purchase of software and content that are directly related to the project and/or used for the duration of the fellowship.

Please click here for more information.

For foreign applicants, please click here to download a guide for overseas candidates.


How to apply?

Each application must include:

  1. A completed application form . In providing information about education, exams and previous experience, photocopies of testimonies and documents are acceptable and must be attached at the time of application. But if you are selected for the award, the original or certified copy bearing the university/company seal must be presented for verification.
  2. A Curriculum Vitae that includes the following information:
    • Details of research awards previously and concurrently held.
    • Details of professional seminars/conference papers/public lectures presented.
    • A list of major publications.
    • Details of past and current involvement on digital humanities projects
  3. A detailed proposal (not exceeding 10 pages; page count excludes references and annexes) that contains the following:
    • Provides a comprehensive outline of the proposed topic of research, including details of the NLS and/or NAS collections and resources that would be used and how they are crucial to the research objectives. Please also specify if you would be using datasets from other sources.
    • Anticipated outcomes and significance of the proposed research.
    • Audiences for the intended project.
    • How the proposed project will promote NLS and/or NAS collections.
    • Key project milestones and estimated time needed for completion.
    • Description of the main technologies and software to be used (e.g. visualisation, text analysis, natural language processing, machine learning, artificial intelligence) and your level of expertise for each (beginner, proficient, expert).
    • Details of proprietary software and/or copyright material to be purchased/licensed and their cost estimates (refer to Terms of Award).
    • Research proposals must be submitted in English but research can be undertaken in other languages.
  4. References from two academic referees that should address the following selection criteria:
    • The applicant’s qualifications, ability and experience.
    • The quality of the applicant’s previous research and publications.
    • The applicant’s demonstrated capacity to complete research projects within a reasonable time frame.
    • The applicant’s awareness of relevant available sources in NLS and/or NAS and an assessment of whether these sources are likely to support the research proposed.
    • The feasibility of the project in terms of available resources and time or other constraints.
    • Whether the project will make a substantial contribution to knowledge in the field.
    • How the project will promote NLS and/or NAS and its special collections.
    • Contact details (telephone, fax number and email address).
  5. Applicants must nominate a Subject Reviewer of their paper, and contact details of the Reviewer. Successful Fellows will send their articles to their Subject Reviewer for comments and make the necessary amendments before submitting their final reports. The following credentials of the Reviewer will apply:
    • Reviewer is affiliated with a leading research institution/academia, and/or has published extensively in the applicant's proposed subject topic.

Applications should be emailed to NL_Digital_Fellowship@nlb.gov.sg by 31 MAY 2022.

Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted. Shortlisted applicants may be invited for an interview. Notification of acceptance or rejection will be made known within 3 months of the closing date.

For further information about the Fellowship, please contact:

The Administrator, National Library Digital Fellowship

Email: NL_Digital_Fellowship@nlb.gov.sg


Our Fellows

The National Library Board is pleased to announce the recipients of the National Library Digital Fellowship 2021.

  • Bryson Ng
  • Evelyn Chew

Last Updated On 24 May 2022