The Dictionary is a partnership between the City of Sydney, the University of Sydney, the State Library of New South Wales, the State Records Authority of New South Wales, and the University of Technology Sydney. It began in 2007 with Australian Research Council funding and launched on 5 November 2009.
Geographically, the Dictionary of Sydney includes the whole Sydney basin and chronologically spans the years from the earliest human habitation to the present. It also invites historical contributions from disciplines such as archaeology, sociology, literary studies, historical geography and cultural studies.
Heurist, developed by the University of Sydney is the underlying technology for the project. The Dictionary of Sydney won an Energy Australia National Trust Heritage Award for Interpretation and Presentation in April 2010.