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Mission

The Digital Humanities Initiative at Buffalo functions as an applied think-tank for the humanities and related areas. It is designed to serve as an intellectual hub for scholars involved in innovative research and instruction at the intersection of the humanities, computing, and other emerging digital technologies and to provide an environment in which faculty are encouraged to experiment and develop digital solutions to challenges in research and instruction, or to experiment with digital technologies that may lead to new applications and project challenges.

At the local level, the DHIB serves in part to coordinate the multiple sites of excellence in digital technology, computing sciences, and humanities research already developed at UB in order to provide efficient management of shared resources, especially hardware, software, and technological expertise. This platform for shared information and cutting edge research across disciplines in turn grounds communication among members at the DHIB’s regular meetings, roundtables, and workshops. The DHIB will also sponsor conferences and lectures to bring in outstanding international practioners of digital Humanities scholarship and provide training in new digital technologies for members of the DHIB.

At the national and international level, the DHIB will serve as a leader in the development, application and interpretation of research in the Humanities and related areas. The outstanding collections in the UB Libraries will bring affiliated scholars to the Initiative, and the cutting edge research of UB faculty will draw postdoctoral fellows and scholars to participate actively in the DHIB community.

Governance

Director: Maureen Jameson
Associate Director: Cris Miller
Humanities Institute Liaison: Neil Coffee
Steering Committee: Peter Biehl, Austin Booth,Ronan Crowley, Jeff Good, Nancy Nuzzo

Membership

See Membership Statement.

Funding

DRAFT Request for proposals for summer funding (not yet finalized)

Training

New degital technologies are relevant to the practice of the humanities for many reasons. Access to the objects of humanistic study is increasingly facilitated by technologies of reproduction and inventory, and indeed preservation of the objects themselves requires a science that lies outside the normal training of humanists. A growing body of technologically-mediated works of literature calls out to be studied by scholars trained in both verbal and digital arts, just as film has required the development of hybrid training in film studies. Finally, it has become clear that modern tools for editing, annotation, collaboration, and analysis afford scholars new insights into their traditional areas of inquiry.

Training in the humanities may thus now include markup languages, technical standards, encoding protocols, and data analysis – all words from hitherto arcane jargons – as well as involvement in projects which reveal the pertinence of this training to humanistic areas of inquiry. New professional development and graduate training should be envisioned for the purpose of creating readers fully capable of grasping the questions posed by the objects of study and the potential of existing and emerging technologies to advance the debate. (See projected training topics.)



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