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Arcadia serves humanity by preserving endangered cultural heritage and ecosystems.

We protect complexity and work against the entropy of ravaged and thereby starkly simplified natural environments and globalized cultures. Innovation and change occur best in already complex systems. Once memories, knowledge, skills, variety, and intricacy disappear – once the old complexities are lost – they are hard to replicate or replace. Arcadia aims to return to people both their memories and their natural surroundings. What we want to preserve remains fragile, small and dispersed. But if we do not protect it – if it vanishes forever – then future generations will have no base from which to build a vibrant, resilient, green future.

Because knowledge should belong to all, we also promote open access, seeking to make information available without barriers of cost or distance. Charities, businesses, universities, schools, the media, politicians, and citizens all benefit when research and data are no longer locked behind paywalls or reserved for those who live near their repositories. The economy benefits too from better-informed decisions, improved schooling and knowledgeable citizens, from enhanced academic research and innovation based on shared knowledge.

We do not accept applications, but seek and support organizations run by exceptional individuals, operating in a cost-effective, scientifically sound, and ethical manner that share our vision.

Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin

Funder Website

Arcadia Projects

EAP1402 Pub003

19th-century documents from the Peruvian asylum el Manicomio del Cercado

The Victor Larco Herrera Hospital in the centre of Lima, Peru, was closed in 1917. Its archives, dating back to 1859, consist of medical documentation as well as administrativ…

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EAP1306 Silk Museum

The Caucasian Silk Circle: Digitising Photo Collection of the State Silk Museum in Georgia

The State Silk Museum of Georgia holds the only documentary evidence of the practice of sericulture in the 19th century. Taken during expeditions of the Caucasian Sericulture …

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EAP1294 team

Safeguarding for Posterity Two Private Collections of Palm-Leaf Manuscripts from the Tamil Country

The Kalliṭaikuṟicci and Villiyampākkam collections are palm-leaf collections held privately in India. The collections are essential to study the prevalent reading practices in…

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EAP Placeholder

Digitisation and Diffusion of the Historical Archive of the Institute of Charity "Hermandad De Dolores" (Fraternity of Sorrows), Santiago De Chile

The archive of the Institute of Charity Hermandad de Dolores holds the history of the association from 1815 to the present. These enrich our understanding of Chilean charity i…

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Eap 1285

Digitising and First Aid to Documentary Heritage of “Manuscripts Collection of the Great Omari Mosque Library” - Phase II

The library of the Great Omari Mosque is one of the most important and oldest national library and archive centres in Palestine. However, it is very vulnerable and at risk due…

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Personal Manuscripts on the Periphery of Javanese Literature: A Survey and Digitisation of Private Collections from the Javanese North Coast, its Sundanese Hinterlands and the Fringes of Court

Javanese studies have long been directed by critical editions commissioned by European patrons. The survey and digitisation of texts written for private use allow scholars to …

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Eap 1262

Preserving the History of Indian Cinema through Digitising Early Urdu Film Magazines

The Hindi film industry, based in Bombay (now Mumbai), was and is the largest of India’s film industries. Shedding new light on South Asian film journalism and readership, thi…

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Eap 1251

Digitisation of the Historic Newspaper, The Barbadian

The Barbadian newspaper covers the transition from the colonial, pre-modern to the modern era. The archives will enable scholars to trace the transition from the “news” being …

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EAP1248 project page

Saving the Dialectological and Ethnographic Archival Material Preserved in Chişinău, Republic of Moldova

Between 1946 and 1991, the Institute of Language and Literature of the Moldovan branch of the USSR Academy of Sciences recorded dialects of the Romanian-speaking community in …

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