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The Copyright Agency Cultural Fund
or The Copyright Agency Cultural Fund ; or Copyright Agency Cultural Fund ; or Copyright Agency's Cultural Fund Awards
Subcategory of Awards Australian Awards
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The Cultural Fund is the philanthropic arm of the Copyright Agency. Copyright Agency members commit 1.5% of revenue every year for vital grants to enhance the profile of Australian creators and to support our dynamic writing, publishing and visual arts sectors.

The Cultural Fund distributes grants to individuals, organisations and fellowships. The Fellowships are indexed by AustLit.

Latest Winners / Recipients (also see subcategories)16054459

Year: 2020

recipient Eleanor Dark Foundation $10,000for the Blue Mountains International Writers’ Residency Program for Australian writers
recipient Spineless Wonders

$9000 for the Carmel Bird Digital Literary Award 2021


recipient State Library of Queensland $15,000 for the Queensland Literary Awards—David Unaipon Award 2020
recipient y separately published work icon The Stella Prize 2012 Z1933497 2012 website

'The Stella Prize is a major literary award celebrating Australian women's writing. It is named after one of Australia's iconic female authors, Stella Maria 'Miles' Franklin, and celebrates women's contribution to Australian literature.'

This website includes interviews, news and events.

$75,000 over three years for the Stella Prize 2021–23
recipient University of Tasmania $60,000 over three years for the Hedberg Writers-in-Residence Program
recipient Westerly Centre, University of Western Australia $23,319 for Westerly magazine’s Writers’ Development and Fellowship Program 2020–22
recipient Australian Book Review, Inc. $20,000 for commentary on cultural, political and social issues
recipient Better Reading $15,000 for online month-long features and promotion of Australian emerging authors
recipient Big Issue in Australia $5000 for the Big Issue fiction edition
recipient y separately published work icon Griffith Review Julianne Schultz (editor), 2003- Nathan : Griffith University ABC Books , Z1083691 2003- periodical (73 issues) 'Each issue will develop an important topical theme with writing from a range of genres and perspectives that will provide a unique literary conversation. Griffith Review aims to build a bridge between journalism, academic and literary writing in Australia.' (From: sighted 22/11/2003) $16,000 for Unsettling the Status Quo: Supporting new First Nations’ work
recipient y separately published work icon Meanjin Meanjin Papers; Meanjin Quarterly Sophie Cunningham (editor), Sally Heath (editor), C. B. Christesen (editor), Jim Davidson (editor), Judith Brett (editor), Christina Thompson (editor), Stephanie Holt (editor), Ian Britain (editor), Jenny Lee (editor), Jonathan Green (editor), 1940 Brisbane : Meanjin Press , 1940-1944 Z838453 1940 periodical (322 issues)

The first issue of Meanjin was published at Brisbane in 1940, containing the poems of Clem Christesen, James Picot, Brian Vrepont and Paul Grano. Christesen was the founding editor and remained in that position until 1974, attempting to produce a 'journal of ideas, built around books, to encourage free expression and intelligent criticism, to put forward "advance guard" material, develop contacts abroad--a Literary Lend-lease'. To this end, Christesen attracted a diverse group of writers from Australia and overseas. In the 1940s Australian writers included poets such as Harold Stewart, Harry Hooton, Peter Hopegood, Max Harris, Rex Ingamells, Hugh McCrae and R. D. FitzGerald ; critics such as Vance and Nettie Palmer, A. R. Chisholm and R. G. Howarth; fiction writers such as Xavier Herbert and Katharine Susannah Prichard; and a variety of other commentators such as Norman Bartlett, Lloyd Ross, Brian Fitzpatrick and Manning Clark. Overseas writers whose work appeared in Meanjin included Anais Nin, Arthur Koestler and Jean-Paul Sartre. Accompanying the work of these writers were sketches, designs and woodcuts from a number of visual artists, including Margaret Preston, Frank Medworth, Noel Counihan and Roy Dalgarno.

Following an offer by Melbourne University to publish and manage the magazine, Christesen and his wife, Nina, moved to Melbourne in February 1945. Despite the financial security and institutional support, circulation dropped during the next twelve months. Christesen was forced to seek sponsorship from other sources to supplement the contribution from the university. By the late 1940s the distinct business connection with the university had ended but infrastructure was still provided, maintaining Meanjin 's institutional home.

With the onset of the Cold War, Communist Party sympathisers were being increasingly targetted and Meanjin was no exception. The Christesens were regularly under surveillance and were implicated in the Petrov Affair in 1955. But despite this adverse attention (threatening the approval of literary grants) and the destruction of many friendships, the circulation of Meanjin remained strong throughout the 1950s. In the late 1950s and 1960s, Christesen continued to attract the work of some of Australia's best writers and intellectuals, building a strong group of regular contributors, including A. D. Hope, A. A. Phillips, Judith Wright, Jack Lindsay, John Morrison, Robert D. FitzGerald, James K Baxter and David Martin. Meanjin also contributed to discussion on the visual arts with regular contributions from Allan McCulloch, Ursula Hoff and Bernard Smith. In addition, Several important series were produced in the 1960s with titles such as 'Australian Heritage', 'Godzone', 'Pacific Signposts', and 'The Temperament of Generations'. But with the growth of a new generation in a rapidly changing culture, and Christesen's flagging energy, Meanjin began to lose the distinctive tone that its long-time editor had fostered. The future of the magazine became a concern.

The historian Jim Davidson had been acting as editor for some time before he was officially instated in 1975. During his eight-year term Davidson attempted to attract a new generation of readers to Meanjin, with special issues on Papua and New Guinea, Women and the Arts, and Aboriginal culture. Davidson also introduced interviews in a new format that brought the first change in size to Meanjin since 1951. In the first issue of 1982 Judith Brett was acknowledged as Associate Editor, taking over from Davidson in the next issue. Like Davidson, Brett responded to changes in Australian culture, extending the discussion of women writers begun in the late 1970s and introducing a focus on migrant writers. Throughout this period Meanjin continued to print the works of many of Australia's best creative writers. Contributors during this period included Bruce Dawe, John Tranter, Chris Wallace-Crabbe, Tom Shapcott, Jennifer Maiden, Les Murray, Patrick White, Frank Moorhouse, Morris Lurie, Laurie Clancy and Michael Wilding. In addition to established writers Meanjin also published the work of new writers, including Tim Winton, Nicholas Jose, Marion Halligan and Garry Disher.

Throughout the 1990s Meanjin went through several changes to format and faced a number of financial challenges. Jenny Lee's term as editor brought a more academic tone to the magazine and introduced regular thematic issues (but this has not always pre-determined the selection of creative writing). Many issues focused on cultural studies, postmodernism, postcolonialism and the state of the humanities. Other issues explored landscape, music, women's knowledge, Aboriginal issues and the Pacific region.

When Christina Thompson became editor in 1994, she brought another shift in tone, suggesting that Meanjin had become too academic, and pushed for a greater clarity in the contributions. Issues explored during Thompson's term included Canadian studies, corporatisation, suburban life, the Pacific region and queer studies. In the mid 1990s Meanjin faced severe financial setback when regular government funding was significantly reduced. Despite seeking outside funding, the diminished budget had an immediate effect. With inadequate funds to support productions costs, only three issues were produced in 1997. Thompson also experienced strong opposition from some Meanjin board members and did not seek reappointment.

In 1998 Melbourne University bought Meanjin to avoid its closure, imposing stronger control of the magazine's business dealings. Stephanie Holt, with a background in visual arts journalism, was appointed editor. During Holt's term, Meanjin explored issues on travel, crime, reconciliation, and revisited the idea of the cultural cringe. Former editor, Jim Davidson, later remarked that Holt had made Meanjin 'absolutely contemporary again'. But Holt faced some opposition at the end of her term and was controversially replaced by historian Ian Britain in 2001, causing several board members to resign in protest. Britain has since produced themed issues on museums, life writing, drugs and food.

$60,000 over three years
recipient y separately published work icon Cordite Cordite : Poetry and Poetics Review; Cordite Poetry Review Liam Ferney (editor), David Prater (editor), Adrian Wiggins (editor), Peter Minter (editor), Kent MacCarter (editor), 1997 Kirribilli : Cordite Press , 1997- Z919427 1997 periodical (95 issues) $10,000 for payments to poetry contributors and book authors
recipient University of Queensland Press $7000 for the Extraordinary Voices for Extraordinary Times Poems and Podcast project
recipient Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatjar Yankunytjatjara Women’s Council Aboriginal Corporation (NPY) $12,000 to write and create the children’s book ‘All the Animals’,  a children’s story book about donkeys and Anangu by storytellers and artists of Tjanpi Desert Weavers
recipient Sydney PEN Centre $30,000 over three years for PEN Free Voices—funding for speakers’ events

Year: 2019

recipient Children's Book Council of Australia

$12,000 for its 2019 CBCA National Conference

recipient National Museum of Australia

25,000 for its ‘Living with the Anthropocene’ nonfiction essay collection.

recipient Australian School Library Association

$5000 for its project entitled ‘Leading Learning in Literacy: 50 years of the Australian School Libraries Association’

recipient Australian Literacy Educators' Association

$10,245 for its 2019 national conference

recipient Australian Association for the Teaching of English

$5800 toward supporting English teachers to select and teach Indigenous stories.


recipient Sydney Writers' Festival

$25,000 for panel sessions

recipient Perth Festival Writers Week

$15,000 for panel sessions


recipient Adelaide Writers' Week

$20,000 for panel sessions

recipient Queensland Poetry Festival

$10,000 for panel sessions

recipient Kill Your Darlings

$7240 to fund KYD/Varuna Copyright Agency Fellowship

recipient Island Magazine

$20,000 toward contributors’ fees 2019

recipient The Red Room Company

$38,000 for the Poetry Object Prize and partnerships—cross-curricular/disciplinary outreach

recipient First Nations Australia Writers Network

$20,000 for FNAWN poetry and short story prize and workshops

recipient y separately published work icon The Guardian Australia 2013 Surry Hills : Guardian Newspapers , 2013- 6599791 2013 newspaper (823 issues)

$30,000 to grow readership of Australian writers and books

recipient Melbourne University Publishing $10,000 to fund an anthology of Australian prose poetry
recipient Australian Publishers Association

$30,000 to fund Australian Inclusive Publishing Initiative guides

recipient The Australian Society of Authors

$115,000 towards the Copyright Agency Developmental Mentorships for Writers and Illustrators

recipient University of Technology, Sydney

$120,000 to fund the Copyright Agency’s new writer-in-residence program over three years

recipient (Jumbunna Institute) University of Technology, Sydney

 $30,000 to fund its Blak Letter Law project over two years, showcasing literary collaborations linking Indigenous writers and jurists

recipient University of Queensland Library

$90,000 over three years to fund its creative writing fellowship

recipient Express Media

$60,000 to put toward its ‘toolkits’ workshops over three years 

recipient Fremantle Press

$2400 to showcase new authors to festival directors.

recipient (Education) Bad Producer Productions $14,000 for The Garrett to produce podcasts that compliment Reading Australia’s teaching resources for works by diverse writers
recipient (Indigenous organisations) Us Mob Writing $10,000 for its Poetry in Language program
recipient (Emerging Critics) y separately published work icon Sydney Review of Books James Ley (editor), 2013 Sydney : Sydney Review of Books , 2013- Z1913808 2013 website periodical review (99 issues) 'The Sydney Review of Books is an online journal devoted to long-form literary criticism. It is motivated by the belief that in-depth analysis and robust critical discussion are crucial to the development of Australia's literary culture. We decided to embark on this project because of our concerns about the reduced space for serious literary criticism in the mainstream media, and the newspapers in particular, given their uncertain future. We intend the Sydney Review of Books to be a venue in which Australian writers and critics can engage with books at length, a venue in which to rediscover the intimate connection between the art of criticism and the art of the essay. The Review's focus is Australian writing, but it will also consider the work of overseas authors.' (Source: )
$49,500 for its Emerging Critics Fellowships over three years
recipient (Journals) y separately published work icon Griffith Review Julianne Schultz (editor), 2003- Nathan : Griffith University ABC Books , Z1083691 2003- periodical (73 issues) 'Each issue will develop an important topical theme with writing from a range of genres and perspectives that will provide a unique literary conversation. Griffith Review aims to build a bridge between journalism, academic and literary writing in Australia.' (From: sighted 22/11/2003) $30,000 for its Reportage Pilot Program
recipient (Poetry) The Red Room Company $18,000 for its Poetic Moments Journeys project, to feature Australian poetry on public transport
recipient Spineless Wonders $5000 for its Microflix Award and Symposium, a literature-based short film festival
recipient UWA Publishing

$56,100 for its Dorothy Hewett Award for an unpublished manuscript over three years


recipient Australian Historical Association $8000 for travel and writing bursaries over three years
recipient Australian Association for the Teaching of English $10,500 for its 2019 national conference
recipient University of Notre Dame Press $30,000 for a residency for novelist Charlotte Wood
recipient New England Writers Centre $3714 for the inaugural Varuna/New England Writers’ Centre Fellowship
recipient ACT Writers Centre $11,992 for its ACT Writer-in-Residence program
recipient Centre for Stories $11,475 for its Inclusion Matters program.
winner (Prose) Motel 47 Tanya Vavilova , 2019 single work prose
— Appears in: Meniscus , vol. 7 no. 2 2019;

Works About this Award

Copyright Agency Awards Record $240,000 in Fellowships 2018 single work column
— Appears in: Books + Publishing News , November 2018;

'The Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund has awarded a total of $240,000 for three fellowships.'