Born-digital data and methods for history and the humanities

Project Summary

This project is hosted by: Institute of Historical Research

Research interests:
Communications, History, Library, Politics
Africa, Africa, Asia, Asia, Europe, Europe, United Kingdom, United Kingdom
Project period:
02-Jan-2016 - 30-Jan-2017
Project categories:
Network grant, Research project
Project summary:

 1) To research the current use of born-digital material in the humanities in general and in history in particular, and its corresponding technologies and methodologies, thereby providing a snapshot of the state-of-the-art. This will (i) allow us to develop strategies for future research work, and (ii) provide a baseline against which to measure the impact of the network.
2) To bring together researchers to discuss born-digital data and methods in an interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral context, drawing on a range of stakeholders with complementary skills and requirements.
3) To establish a sustainable community of partners interested in the development and application of historical approaches to big data research on born-digital material. This will include participants from history and other humanities disciplines, digital arts, computer science, information science, sociology, statistics, etc.
4) To develop a distinctive arts and humanities understanding of the potential of born-digital information for research, which complements existing work in the computer sciences.
5) To encourage engagement with born-digital material in the relevant research communities, both academic and nonacademic. We will provide online means whereby participants can meet on a regular basis to exchange ideas, identify problems and applications, and plan future research.
6) To inform the development of born digital archives and archival practice, such that the requirements of archivists and researchers are appropriately aligned and complementary.
7) To identify the significant new tools and technologies available for working with born-digital data, to examine the key challenges and opportunities that they present for humanities researchers, and to establish which are likely to have a genuinely transformative impact on the research process.
8) To ensure that emerging good practice is understood, promoted and widely adopted, thereby helping to prevent unnecessary expenditure and the duplication of effort.
9) To encourage international collaboration, leading to future research proposals and to the development of a common infrastructure where appropriate.
10) To produce a white paper which will present key findings arising from the network and suggest ways forward for researchers working with born-digital data.

Management Details

Lead researcher & project contact:

Name Position Institute Organisation Contact
Professor Jane Winters Chair in Digital Humanities Publications Institute of Historical Research SAS