Paper publication: Boundary Practices of Digital Humanities Collaborations

I am really happy that today the first paper based on my PhD research was published in the DH Benelux Journal. This new journal will serve to turn select conference abstracts from the annual conference into full papers. The first volume follows last year’s conference theme Integrating Digital Humanities. My paper critically explores the integration of the humanities and the computational domains, and concludes that the digital humanities may be more heavily oriented towards the humanities than a balancing of the digital and the humanities, limiting the ability of DH to emerge as a ‘third space’ in-between the humanities and computational domains. You can find the volume here, including my paper in HTML and in PDF.

Continue reading

DH Failures vs Findings

Recent discussions in digital humanities have drawn attention to “failure”. Projects can fail to deliver a tool or fail to innovate practices. But what practices are emphasised by speaking of “failure”, and for whom is a certain result a failure? In this post, I argue that recent discussions of failure seem to take DH as software development rather than research, shaping the discussion of what DH should achieve and whether other results are thereby failures.

Continue reading

Collaborations as Trading Zones

DH is clearly a meeting of different communities. To better understand DH therefore requires the investigation of this ‘meeting’. A concept that has gained in popularity to describe the meeting between different communities is trading zones, which I will elaborate in this post. Using this concept, differences and commonalities between meetings of DH collaborations can be investigated and mapped.

Continue reading
DH: between disciplines, communities, and cultures

DH: between disciplines, communities, and cultures

In order to understand engagement in DH, one aspect to describe is the configurations of participating people. One approach would be to consider the interactions between different disciplines such as history and computer science. In this post, I will reflect on the concept of disciplines, and discuss alternative concepts of communities of practice and cultures.

Continue reading
PhD Comics The Mountain Top, by Jorge Cham

The mountain and the valley: 2019 will be exciting

2018 has been a great year for my wife and me. The most exciting moment was when we welcomed our second son Rowas into the world. Now that he’s almost one year already, the nights are getting easier, giving more energy to concentrate. And I will need my concentration, for 2019 promises to be an exciting year in which I have a mountain to climb, and a valley to explore.

Continue reading
What makes DH interdisciplinary?
How to reflect on DH collaborations

Towards a hermeneutics of cross-disciplinary collaboration in the humanities

One of the defining characteristics of digital humanities is the emphasis on interdisciplinary collaboration.[1]Klein, J. T. (2014). Interdisciplining Digital Humanities: Boundary Work in an Emerging Field (online). University of Michigan Press. https://doi.org/10.3998/dh.12869322.0001.001[2]Spiro, L. (2012). “This Is Why We Fight”: Defining the Values of the Digital Humanities. In M. K. Gold (Ed.), Debates in Digital Humanities (online). University of Minnesota Press. http://dhdebates.gc.cuny.edu/debates/text/13 The different facets of digital humanities research, such as computer technology, data management, and humanistic inquiry, call for experts with different backgrounds to collaborate. But how to study or reflect on DH collaborations? In this post I introduce a blog series in which I will develop a vocabulary for collaborative DH.

Continue reading

References   [ + ]

1. Klein, J. T. (2014). Interdisciplining Digital Humanities: Boundary Work in an Emerging Field (online). University of Michigan Press. https://doi.org/10.3998/dh.12869322.0001.001
2. Spiro, L. (2012). “This Is Why We Fight”: Defining the Values of the Digital Humanities. In M. K. Gold (Ed.), Debates in Digital Humanities (online). University of Minnesota Press. http://dhdebates.gc.cuny.edu/debates/text/13

Abstract: Power Asymmetries of eHumanities Infrastructures

In the final week of October the annual IEEE eScience conference will take place in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. This will be my first eScience conference, and I look forward to seeing how the eScience community is similar to or different from the digital humanities community. I have submitted a paper applying findings of my PhD research to the development of eScience infrastructures for the humanities. Specifically, my paper discusses the problems of power asymmetry in collaborations, with scholars dependent on infrastructures developers, and of knowledge asymmetry, with scholars lacking the knowledge necessary to influence the practices of infrastructure developers. A first difference between the eScience and DH communities I already observed was in the reviews of my submission, which found my topic of interest but lacking in a (technological) solution to the problem. Unfortunately, I do not have a solution readily available, but I have extended my power relation circle with a possible way out in the development of know-howBelow you can find the abstract for my paper, and the poster I will present at the conference (designed by my wife).

Continue reading