'AustLit is an important destination for those researching in the field of Australian literary studies. As a vehicle for periodical studies, AustLit provides invaluable resources in the form of indexes to the literary content of many magazines, newspapers and scholarly journals; the history, editorship and purpose of many small and large periodicals; and collections of records that demonstrate a particular aspect of the history of Australian periodical publishing and readership. As a virtual research environment, AustLit provides researchers with tools for creating, aggregating and annotating collections of relevant data and for publishing these datasets as scholarly outcomes of research projects. Amongst other AustLit supported research projects, Jill Julius Matthews, for example, used AustLit as a publication vehicle for her historical survey, 1895–1930, on the collection of magazines in the State Library of New South Wales’s Mitchell Library.
'This paper will present some of the ways that AustLit has engaged with historical research into Australian magazine and newspaper culture, presenting the outcomes of projects that have, collectively, built our understanding of the important role periodicals have played. It will show how AustLit is embedded in the wider research environment and discuss how scholars and others can use AustLit as a site for their own research outcomes, foreshadowing some of the options becoming available as a result of a major restructure of the database and interface. ' (Publication abstract)