Professor Jane Winters

Contact details

Professor Jane Winters
Professor of Digital Humanities & Director of the Digital Humanities Research Hub
Institute of Historical Research
Room 256, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU
+44 (0)20 7862 8789
Email address:

Research Summary and Profile

Research interests:
Communications, Contemporary History, Culture, Digital resources, Digitisation, History, Medieval History
Summary of research interests and expertise:

Jane is responsible for developing digital humanities at the School of Advanced Study. She has led or co-directed a range of digital projects, including most recently the UK-Ireland Digital Humanities Association: a Network for Research Capacity Enhancement; CLEOPATRA: Cross-Lingual Event-Centric Open Analytics Research Academy; WARCnet; Big UK Domain Data for the Arts and Humanities; Digging into Linked Parliamentary Metadata; and Traces through Time: Prosopography in Practice across Big Data.

Jane is Vice-President (Publications) of the Royal Historical Society, and a member of RESAW (Research Infrastructure for the Study of the Archived Web), the Advisory Board of the Living with Machines project, the Advisory Board of the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure, the Editorial Board of the History of Parliament, and the UK UNESCO Memory of the World Committee.

Jane's research interests include digital history, born-digital archives (particularly the archived web), the use of social media by cultural heritage institutions, and open access publishing. She has published most recently on Non-Print Legal Deposit and web archives, born-digital archives and the problem of search, and the archiving and analysis of national web domains.

Twitter: @jfwinters

Publication Details

Related publications/articles:

Date Details
31-Dec-2022 'Digital Humanities and the academic books of the future', in The Bloomsbury Handbook of the Digital Humanities, ed. James O'Sullivan (London: Bloomsbury, forthcoming 2022)


12-Jul-2022 'Digital scholarship in the humanities: insights from the disciplines', in Digital Humanities: an Introduction for Librarians, ed. Sally Chambers and Toma Tasovac (London: Facet Publishing, forthcoming 2022)


with Sally Chambers

31-Jan-2022 'Web archives and the problem of access: prototyping a researcher dashboard for the UK Government Web Archive', in Archives, Access and Artificial Intelligence: Working with Born Digital and Digitized Archival Collections (Bielefeld: Bielefeld University Press, forthcoming, 2021)


with Mark Bell and Tom Storrar

21-Aug-2021 The Past Web: Exploring Web Archives (Cham: Springer International Publishing)

Edited Book

with Daniel Gomes, Elena Demidova and Thomas Risse

23-Jul-2021 Communicating the Value and Impact of Digital Humanities in Teaching, Research, and Infrastructure Development (2021)


with Sarah Gambell, Paul Gooding, Lorna Hughes, Michelle Doran, Orla Murphy, Charlotte Tupman, Jennifer Edmond, Arianna Ciula, Justin Tonra, Neil Jakeman, Patricia Murrieta-Flores, Natasha Romanova and James Smithies

25-Jun-2021 'The role of research libraries in promoting open-access resources and maintaining online community', in Libraries, Digital Information and COVID, ed. David Baker and Lucy Ellis (Chandos Publishing, 2021)


10-Jun-2021 'The values of web archives', International Journal of Digital Humanities (2021)

Journal articles

with Valerie Schafer

01-May-2021 Doing Digital History: a Beginner's Guide to Working with Text as Data (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2021)


with Jonathan Blaney, Sarah Milligan and Marty Steer

26-Apr-2021 Capacity enhancement in Digital Humanities in the United Kingdom and Ireland: training and beyond (2021)


with Natasha Romanova, Arianna Ciula, James Smithies, Neil Jakeman, Orla Murphy and Charlotte Tupman

31-Oct-2020 'Learned societies, humanities publications, and scholarly communications in the UK', in Reassembling Scholarly Communications Histories: Infrastructures, and Global Politics of Open Access, ed. Martin P. Eve and Jonathan Gray (MIT Press, 2020).


31-Oct-2020 ‘Giving with one click, taking with the other: e-legal deposit, web archives and researcher access', in Electronic Legal Deposit: Shaping the Library Collections of the Future, ed. Paul Gooding and Melissa Terras (London: Facet Publishing)


25-Aug-2020 'How we do things with words: analyzing text as social and cultural data', Frontiers in Artificial Intelligence: Language and Computation


with Dong Nguyen, Maria Liakata, Simon DeDeo, Jacob Eisenstein, David Mimno and Rebekah Tromble

11-Aug-2019 'Negotiating the born digital: a problem of search', Archives and Manuscripts, 47:4


with Andrew Prescott

28-Mar-2019 'Negotiating the archives of UK web space', in The Historical Web and Digital Humanities: the Case of National Web Domains, ed. Niels Brügger and Ditte Laursen (London: Routledge)


01-Jan-2019 ‘Web archives and (digital) history: a troubled past and a promising future?’, in The SAGE Handbook of Web History, ed. Niels Brügger and Ian Milligan (SAGE Publications Ltd.)


04-Oct-2018 'Digital history’, in Debating New Approaches to History, ed. Marek Tamm and Peter Burke (London: Bloomsbury Publishing)


07-Sep-2018 ‘What does an author want from a publisher?’, Learned Publishing, 31(4) (September 2018), 318-22


06-Apr-2018 Editorial

Journal articles

 Internet Histories, DOI: 10.1080/24701475.2018.1459080

19-Feb-2018 Review: Web 25: Histories from the First 25 Years of the World Wide Web, ed. Niels Brügger (New York: Peter Lang, 2017)


 Internet Histories. DOI: 10.1080/24701475.2018.1439149

18-Dec-2017 Tackling complexity in humanities big data: from parliamentary proceedings to the archived web, in Big and Rich Data in English Corpus Linguistics: Methods and Variations, ed. Turo Hiltunen, Joe McVeigh and Tanja Säily (Helsinki: Varieng)


28-Mar-2017 Breaking in to the mainstream: demonstrating the value of internet (and web) histories

Journal articles

Internet Histories
Digital Technology, Culture and Society
Volume 1, 2017 - Issue 1-2

01-Mar-2017 ‘Web archives for humanities research: some reflections’, in The Web as History: Using Web Archives to Understand the Past and Present, ed. Niels Brügger and Ralph Schroeder (London: UCL Press, 2017), pp. 238-248.


28-Feb-2017 ‘Will history survive the digital age?’, BBC History Magazine (March 2017), 39-43


06-Mar-2014 Review - Historical Drama: Wolf Hall and Bring up the Bodies


01-Jan-2012 Connected Histories: Building Sources for British History, 1500-1900

Journal articles

ALISS Quarterly (Association of Librarians and Information Professionals in the Social Sciences), 7 (April 2012)

01-Jan-2011 Connected Histories: a new web search tool for British Historians

with Tim Hitchcock and Robert Shoemaker ('History', 96 (July 2011), 354-6).

01-Jan-2010 The British History Online digital library: a model for sustainability?

with Jonathan Blaney. Bulletin of the Belgian Royal Historical Commission, 176 (2010), 95-106

01-Jun-2009 The Creighton Century, 1907-2007

ed. with David Bates and Jennifer Wallis

01-Jan-2006 Peer review and evaluation of digital resources for the arts and humanities

Publications available on SAS-space:

Date Details
Oct-2006 Peer Review and Evaluation of Digital Resources for the Arts and Humanities Final Report


This is the final report produced by the AHRC-funded 'Peer review of digital resources for the arts and humanities' ICT strategy project.

Sep-2006 Peer review project online survey report


This report presents the results of the online survey conducted in November and December 2006 as part of the IHR's 'Peer review of digital resources for the arts and humanities' research project.

The British History Online digital library: a model for sustainability?


This article discusses the evolution of British History Online, with particular attention to the ways in which this digital library has tried to achieve a financially self-sustaining status.

Oct-2010 Connected Histories: sources for building British history 1500-1900


Jan-2011 'Reviews in History' and peer review in the digital age


This paper discusses the development of the IHR's open access reviews journal, Reviews in History, and goes on to consider some of the ways in which peer review, both pre- and post-publication, might evolve in the coming months and years. It was given at a conference held to mark the launch of a new open-access reviews platform,

Apr-2011 Approaches to digital editing


This paper discusses approaches to digital editing, focusing on two projects, ReScript and Early English Laws ( It also touches on some of the other tools available to editors, for example those offered as part of TextGrid. ReScript, a project of the Institute of Historical Research, aims to develop a prototype editing facility, which will support collaboration within established editorial teams as well as a crowdsourced approach to producing editions. It is currently being trialled with texts at a range of stages of production, from ‘completed’ 19th-century editions which will benefit from correction and annotation to completely new works. Early English Laws aims to publish online new editions and translations of all English legal codes, edicts and treatises produced up to and including Magna Carta in 1215. A bespoke editing facility has been developed by the Department of Digital Humanities at King’s College London which, like ReScript, will support collaborative editing, as well as export to print where appropriate. The latter project is particularly complex as it has to accommodate a variety of languages and editorial approaches (scholars working on early English texts, for example, have very different requirements from those working with Latin documents). The tools developed by both of these projects will be made available in due course for use and adaptation by and for other projects. The paper was given at the 'Envisioning REED in the digital age' workshop organised by the Records of Early English Drama project, University of Toronto, 4-5 April 2011.

Apr-2007 Open Access Publishing


Paper given at Record Society Publishing

Apr-2007 Digital publication - the available options


Paper given at Record Society Publishing

Jun-2016 Web archives for humanities research: some reflections


Mar-2017 Breaking in to the mainstream: demonstrating the value of internet (and web) histories


This short article explores the challenges involved in demonstrating the value of web archives, and the histories that they embody, beyond media and Internet studies. Given the difficulties of working with such complex archival material, how can researchers in the humanities and social sciences more generally be persuaded to integrate Internet histories into their research? How can institutions and organisations be sufficiently convinced of the worth of their own online histories to take steps to preserve them? And how can value be demonstrated to the wider general public? It touches on public attitudes to personal and institutional Internet histories, barriers to access to web archives - technical, legal and methodological - and the cultural factors within academia that have hindered the penetration of new ways of working with new kinds of primary source. Rather than providing answers, this article is intended to provoke discussion and dialogue between the communities for whom Internet histories can and should be of significance.

Aug-2018 Negotiating the archives of UK web space


The archived Web is an enormously rich primary source for the study of the recent past, yet it remains unappreciated and underexploited even by contemporary historians. This chapter examines why this should be the case, and argues that it is now critical for historians to begin to engage with Web archives. It explores the changing relationship between archivists, librarians and historians, which is beginning to break down researchers’ reluctance to work with born-digital materials at scale. It concludes by proposing an exciting future for (digital) historical research, which employs a combination of quantitative and qualitative approaches to recover the lives and voices of ordinary people.

Mar-2018 Web archives and (digital) history: a troubled past and a promising future?


Jun-2019 Negotiating the born digital: a problem of search?


Giving with one click, taking with the other: e-legal deposit, web archives and researcher access


Learned Societies, Humanities Publishing, and Scholarly Communication in the UK


Publications available on SAS-space

Research Projects & Supervisions

Research projects:


The History SPOT (Seminar Podcasts and Online Training) Institute of Historical Research
Project period: 01-Mar-2010 - 31-Mar-2011

Research interests: Early Modern, Medieval History, Metropolitan history, Modern History

VCH Explore Institute of Historical Research
Project period: 01-Feb-2011 - 01-Feb-2011

Research interests: Early Modern, Local Government, Medieval History, Metropolitan history, Modern History

Born-digital data and methods for history and the humanities Institute of Historical Research
Project period: 02-Jan-2016 - 30-Jan-2017

Research interests: Communications, History, Library, Politics

TOBIAS: Thesaurus of British and Irish History as SKOS Institute of Historical Research
Project period: 10-Jan-2015 - 30-Sep-2016

Research interests: Culture, History, Library, Medieval History, Modern History , Politics

Big UK Domain Data for the Arts and Humanities

Big UK Domain Data for the Arts and Humanities is a collaboration between the British Library, the Institute of Historical Research, University of London, the Oxford Internet Institute and Aarhus University. It is one of 21 big data projects funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council as part of its Digital Transformations in the Arts and Humanities theme.

Born Digital Big Data and Approaches for History and the Humanities

CLEOPATRA: Cross-lingual Event-centric Open Analytics Research Academy

A Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network - The main research objective of the Cleopatra ITN is to enable effective and efficient analytics of event-centric multilingual information spread across heterogeneous sources to deliver analytics results to users in a meaningful way, with a particular focus on journalists, digital humanities researchers and memory institutions.

Digging into Linked Parliamentary Data (DILIPAD)

Parliamentary proceedings reflect our history from centuries ago to the present day. They exist in a common format that has survived the test of time, and reflect any event of significance (through times of war and peace, of economic crisis and prosperity). With carefully curated proceedings becoming available in digital form in many countries, new research opportunities arise to analyse this data, on an unprecedented longitudinal scale, and across different nations, cultures and systems of political representation. Focusing on the UK, Canada and The Netherlands, this project will deliver a common format for encoding parliamentary proceedings (with an initial focus on 1800 to yesterday); a joint dataset covering all three jurisdictions; a workbench with a range of tools for the comparative, longitudinal study of parliamentary data; and substantive case studies focusing on migration, left/right ideological polarization and parliamentary language. Comparative analysis of this kind, and the tools to support it, will inform a new approach to the history of parliamentary communication and discourse, and address new research questions. The project is a collaboration between the University of Amsterdam, the History of Parliament Trust, the Institute of Historical Research, University of London, King’s College London, and the University of Toronto. It is funded as part of the Digging into Data Challenge 3.

Heritage Connector

A Towards a National Collection Foundation project in partnership with the Science Museum Group.

Traces through Time: Prosopography in Practice across Big Data

Traces through Time is a collaboration between The National Archives of the UK, the Institute of Historical Research, the University of Brighton and the University of Brighton. It is one of 21 big data projects funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council as part of its Digital Transformations in the Arts and Humanities theme.

UK-EI Digital Humanities Association: a network for research capacity enhancement

Digital Humanities (DH) has emerged in the last decades as an exciting and challenging field of research, combining - in an international and interdisciplinary effort - theory, practices and methods from multiple fields in the Humanities and Computer and Data Sciences. This has resulted in innovative research, and the creation of promising new directions for the Humanities. While DH has developed successfully in the UK and Ireland, with the establishment of world-leading centres in both countries, there are major opportunities for further development and innovation in the field by bringing together their complementary strengths. Seeking to nurture the capacity for excellent research and teaching in DH, to establish and sustain more effective connections with non-HE sectors (notably Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums), and to create new pathways for collaboration, this project will undertake research and consultation vital to the implementation of a permanent Digital Humanities association within the UK and Ireland. Building on existing research conducted by the partner institutions, it will bring together different stakeholders to consider and interrogate critically the concepts of sustainability, inclusivity, training, advocacy and career progression, among other key questions. Institutions and individuals engaged with the network, across the UK and Ireland, will work to propose ways in which the UK and Ireland can build a collaborative vision for the field, and create new and sustainable long-term partnerships in alignment with the international community. At the end of a year of intensive discussion, deliberation and planning, the foundations for a self-sustaining DH association will have been laid, and it will be launched in the autumn of 2021.


This research network, led by Professor Niels Brugger at Aarhus University, offers transnational interdisciplinary networking activities for researchers who study the archived web. It runs for two years from 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2021.

Current PhD topics supervised:

Dates Details
Rhiannon Lewis: Digitised collections and the social museum: the (re)use of images of objects in the collections of the Science Museum Group

Collaborative doctoral studentship with the Science Museum - co-supervisors John Stack and Jessica Bradford)

Daniela Major: National and transnational media coverage of European parliamentary elections, 2004-2019

Part of the CLEOPATRA Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network, grant no. 812997

Caio de Castro Mello: Nationalism, internationalism and sporting identity: the London and Rio Olympics

Part of the CLEOPATRA Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network, grant no. 812997

Jessica BrodeFrank: Strengthening digital curation to provide intersectional narratives within museums using heavy-edit metadata: a case study at Chicago's Adler Planetarium and the applications beyond

(co-supervised with Dr Richard Gartner, Warburg Institute)

Beatrice Cannelli: Archiving social media: a comparative study of the practices, obstacles, and opportunities related to the development of social media archives

(co-supervised with Dr Naomi Wells, Institute of Modern Languages Research)

Past PhD topics supervised:

Dates Details
Women in Court: The Property Rights of Brides, Heiresses and Widows in Thirteenth-Century England

Sheng-Yen Lu

Francielle Carpenedo: Community Engagement via Social Media by the Brazilian Food Community in the UK

Available for doctoral supervision: Yes

Professional Affiliations

Professional affiliations:

Name Activity
Fellow and Vice-President (Publications) of the Royal Historical Society


Name Type Activity Start date End date
Research Infrastructure for the Study of Archived Web Materials
Member of the Academic Steering & Advocacy Committee, Open Library of Humanities
Member of the UNESCO UK Memory of the World Committee
Member of the Advisory Board, European Holocaust Research Infrastructure
Member of the Advisory Board, CDH: Cambridge Digital Humanities
Member of the Data Science and Digital Humanities Interest Group, The Alan Turing Institute
External partner of the Center for Digital History Aarhus
Member of the Advisory Board, Living with Machines
Chair of the Advisory Board, History of Parliament Trust
Member of the Advisory Board, A history of online virality (HIVI)
Member of the Advisory Board, The People of 1381
Member of the Advisory Board, Eighteenth-Century Political Participation and Electoral Culture
Member of the Advisory Board, Archives Unleashed Project
Member of the Advisory Board, Journal of Digital History
Relevant Events

Related events:

Date Details
10-Dec-2018 Using the archives of the UK web for humanities and social science research

Plenary lecture, ‘From Body Capital to the internet’ conference, Strasbourg

21-Nov-2018 Working with born-digital archives for humanities research – a new challenge

Keynote, ‘Digital methodologies for understanding musical experience’ conference

22-Oct-2018 Open access and humanities research - an evolving relationship

Keynote, 'Open and engaged' conference, British Library

21-Aug-2018 Digital history and cultural heritage: a question of collaboration?

Keynote, Dansk Historikermode 2018, Helsingor

11-Jul-2018 Working to define a digital humanities community: local, national and international challenges

Presentation at 'Searching Questions: Digital Humanities Symposium', Cambridge

05-Jul-2018 Digital (public) history - an introduction

Plenary lecture, Public History Summer School, Wroclaw

11-Jun-2018 The Digital Humanities landscape in the UK

Presentation, Digital Culture event, Newcastle

07-Jun-2018 Humanities and the born digital: moving from a difficult past to a promising future?

Keynote, DH Benelux 2018, Amsterdam

25-Apr-2018 What difference does digital make? The present (and future) of digital humanities in the UK

Presentation at Exeter Digital Humanities seminar.

13-Feb-2018 Authors and their publishing experiences

Panel session, UP Redux 2018, British Library

26-Jan-2018 Negotiating web archives: a problem of search?

Presentation, 'After the Digital Revolution' workshop, Loughborough London campus

26-Oct-2017 The use of social media in an academic context

Keynote, HRB Ones 2 Watch conference, Dublin

17-Oct-2017 Negotiating the archives of UK web space

Digital Humanities seminar, Linnaeus University, Vaxjo

11-Sep-2017 Too much information? Negotiating the archives of UK web space

Keynote, Digital Resources for the Arts and Humanities 2017, Plymouth

16-Jun-2017 Moving into the mainstream: web archives in the press

Presentation at Web Archiving Week conference, London

14-Jun-2017 Demonstrating the value of internet and web histories

Panel on 'Internet and web histories', Web Archiving Week conference, London


14-Jun-2017 Web archives: truth, lies and politics in the 21st century

Digital Conversations at the British Library, public roundtable

Other editing/publishing activities:

Date Details
Series Co-Editor, New Historical Perspectives

New Historical Perspectives is a new open-access book series for early career scholars (within ten years of their doctorate), commissioned and edited by the Royal Historical Society, and published by the Institute of Historical Research at the University of London. The series has a number of distinctive features designed to support high-quality scholarship from early career historians.

Editor, 'Academic Publishing' Gathering of Cambridge Elements: Publishing and Book Culture

This new series, published by Cambridge University Press, aims to fill the demand for easily accessible, quality texts available for teaching and research in the diverse and dynamic fields of Publishing and Book Culture. Rigorously researched and peer-reviewed, this brand new Elements series will be published in thematic areas, or 'Gatherings', that can then be augmented by additional online materials.

Member of the Editorial Board, Internet Histories

Consultancy & Media
Available for consultancy:
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