By Adam Crymble, on 8 July 2022
My postgraduate digital humanities students are working away diligently on their dissertations, but understandably they’ve also got one eye on what might come next. For most of them, that means a transition into the world of work.
With a great set of interdisciplinary skills, the ability to talk tech, and an aptitude for humanistic ways of thinking, there are a lot of pathways a DH graduate might pursue. But going on the job market, particularly if you’re non-local, can be a bit overwhelming. For UCL’s DH graduates, there is a great UCL Careers team who can help support you with the transition, including how to develop key skills around CVs and interviews. If you are a UCL grad, please make them your first port of call.
I also wanted to reflect on some places I might go looking if I was in your shoes, interested in something that can put your new DH skills to use. So I’ve compiled the following non-exhaustive list of ideas aimed at those graduating with an MA/MSc. I hope it proves useful, and please share it with others on the lookout.
- Guardian Jobs: A job board that is popular with arts & heritage, charities, education, technology, social enterprise, and media companies. You can also set up free email alerts to hear about jobs within your area of interest.
- Knowledge Quarter: a group of organisations around UCL that are interested in knowledge and culture, many of whom that work at the intersection of DH and other fields. It’s worth checking out their member organisations and exploring opportunities with them. They include organisations such as the British Museum, Charles Dickens Museum, Google, UCL, and the Wellcome Foundation. It’s a great way to get a list of organisations that might like to employ someone with your skillset.
- Jobs.ac.uk: A job board aimed at the university sector. This includes both jobs that require a PhD, and those that do not, in a wide range of roles such as student support services, marketing, and library services. There are some international opportunities, but most jobs are UK-based. You can set up free email alerts based on your criteria.
- Big Tech: don’t be afraid to check out the big tech companies, many of which have London offices. Google, TikTok, and many other big companies have a footprint in the UK, and it’s worth keeping an eye on them and offering your skills to their teams.
- LinkedIn: having spoken to some of our graduates from the previous cohort, they suggested having a good presence on LinkedIn, which can be a great way to find out about job opportunities and connect with people hunting for graduates.
- Talk to DH Labs: There are a number of universities working in digital humanities and you never know when they’ll have roles available. Sometimes that’s short-term teaching or research support, and sometimes it’s in a range of other capacities, from project management to more technical work. Don’t feel bad about reaching out to your tutors to ask about things coming up, or to send an email to one of the other DH groups in London.
I’m sure there are other ideas that are worth pursuing, but I hope this helps some DH graduates in their search.
By Lucy Stagg, on 19 May 2022
The UCL Centre for Digital Humanities (UCLDH) was founded in 2010 as a cross-faculty research centre that brings together a vibrant network of people who teach and research digital humanities in a wide range of disciplines, in the heart of London.
We are seeking a new Associate Director – Early Career (ECR) from within the UCL community to help shape the strategy and direction of UCLDH in its second decade. We define ‘Early Career’ broadly, and include those currently registered on a PhD programme. We particularly welcome expressions of interest from candidates with the following interests or expertise:
- Early career researcher support
- DH skills and training
- Community building
- Accessibility in DH
- Multilingual DH
As an equal member of the UCLDH Management Group, you will participate in meetings and decisions, and setting the agenda for future activity. Meetings usually take place remotely, approximately six times per year. You are welcome to participate fully or co-lead in the range of activities UCLDH offers, as well as to help establish new ones. However, as an unpaid leadership role, you will not be expected to contribute to day-to-day tasks that would better be classed as employment. The successful candidate will receive mentorship from one of the fellow directors.
The Centre hosts a number of initiatives, including the collaborative Digital Humanities Longview seminar and the Susan Hockey lecture, as well as physical infrastructure in the form of a digitisation suite. UCLDH is led by a management group: Steven Gray (CASA – Director), Adam Crymble (Information Studies – Deputy Director), and Ulrich Tiedau (Dutch – Associate Director), and coordinated by Lucy Stagg (Institute of Advanced Studies). UCLDH is committed to a harassment-free space for all members, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, religion, or technical experience. The new member of the Management Group will be expected to champion these values.
This post is linked to the UCL community and candidates should be a student or member of staff at UCL.
How to Apply:
Please send a 1-page cover letter and 1-page CV to email@example.com by Monday 20th June 2022.
Candidates are encouraged to seek the support of their supervisors if relevant, but UCLDH does not need evidence of that support.
Informal queries can be made to Dr. Adam Crymble, Deputy Director UCLDH at firstname.lastname@example.org
By Adam Crymble, on 18 May 2022
Join us 5-6:30pm Thursday (19 May 2022) via Zoom for our very own Professor Tim Williams (Archaeology), for the next Digital Humanities Longview seminar, which explores digital scholarship and the Silk Road. Professor Williams’ research considers urban archaeology, especially in Roman, Islamic, and Central Asian contexts. He’s the Director of a long-running research project at Merv, Turkmenistan, which has been operating since 2001. This collaboration between the Turkmenistan Ministry of Culture, the Ancient Merv State Park, and the UCL Institute of Archaeology aims to research and conserve the remains of one of the great historic cities of the Silk Roads.
This webinar is open to the public. Registration is free but required: https://stanford.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_Ko_LDqfrRKeigtE5S4Ci2w
The Digital Humanities Longview seminar is a joint seminar series co-hosted by UCLDH, the Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis (Stanford, USA), and the Centre for Digital Humanities (Uppsala, Sweden).
Vision for Art (VISART) Workshop for interdisciplinary work in Computer Vision and Digital Humanities
By Lucy Stagg, on 26 April 2022
The VISion for Art (VISART) workshop is an interdisciplinary workshop held with the European Conference on Computer Vision (ECCV) on a bi-annual basis. The workshop is now on its 6th edition and has had great success over ten years since starting in Florence (2012), with the 2022 edition in Tel Aviv, Israel. The success has led to VISART becoming a staple venue for Computer Vision and Digital Art History & Humanities researchers alike. With the workshop’s ambition to bring the disciplines closer and provide a venue for interdisciplinary communication, it has, since 2018, provided two tracks for both the technological development and the reflection of computer vision techniques applied to the arts. The two tracks are:
1. Computer Vision for Art – technical work (standard ECCV submission, 14 pages excluding references)
2. Uses and Reflection of Computer Vision for Art (Extended abstract, 4 pages, excluding references)
Full details are available at the workshop website: https://visarts.eu
In addition to the technical works presented it regularly attracts names that bridge the disciplines including (but not limited to):
The inclusion of such a varied collection of Keynote speakers has provided a fruitful discussion on the use of technology to investigate visual content. From its style and perception (Aaron Hertzmann, Adobe) to how is the “hard humanities” field of computer image analysis of art changing our understanding of paintings and drawings (David G. Stork).
VISART VI Keynotes
The VISART VI (2022) workshop continues this tradition of high profile keynotes. It will add Prof Béatrice Joyeux-Prunel of the University of Geneva and Prof Ohad Ben-Shahar of Ben Gurion University to this list and the return of Prof John Collomosse of the University of Surrey.
Prof Béatrice Joyeux-Prunel
Béatrice Joyeux-Prunel is Full Professor at the University of Geneva in Switzerland (Faculté de Lettres – School of Humanities), chair of Digital Humanities. From 2007 to 2019 she was Associate Professor (maître de conférences) in modern and contemporary art at the École normale supérieure in Paris, France (ENS, PSL). She is a former student of ENS (Alumni 1996, Social Sciences and Humanities), and got an Agrégation in History and Geography in 1999. She defended her PhD in 2005 at the université Paris I Panthéon Sorbonne and her Habilitation at Sciences Po Paris in 2015. Joyeux-Prunel’s research encompasses the history of visual globalisation, the global history of the avant-gardes, the digital technologies in contemporary art, and the digital turn in the Humanities. Since 2009 she has founded and managed the Artl@s project on modern and contemporary art globalisation ([https://artlas.huma-num.fr](https://artlas.huma-num.fr/)) and she coedits the open access journal Artlas Bulletin. In 2016 she founded Postdigital ([www.postdigital.ens.fr](https://visarts.eu/www.postdigital.ens.fr)), a research project on digital cultures and imagination. Since 2019 she has led the European Jean Monnet Excellence Center IMAGO, an international center for the study and teaching on visual globalisation. At Geneva university she directs the SNF Project Visual Contagions ([https://visualcontagions.unige.ch](https://visualcontagions.unige.ch/)), a 4 years research project on images in globalisation, which uses computer vision techniques to trace the global circulation of images in printed material over the 20th century.
Prof John Collomosse
John Collomosse is a Principal Scientist at Adobe Research where he leads the deep learning group. John’s research focuses on representation learning for creative visual search (e.g. sketch, style, pose based search) and for robust image fingerprinting and attribution. He is a part-time full professor at the Centre for Vision Speech and Signal Processing, University of Surrey (UK) where he founded and co-directs the DECaDE multi-disciplinary research centre exploring the intersection of AI and Distributed Ledger Technology. John is part of the Adobe-led content authenticity initiative (CAI) and contributor to the technical work group of the C2PA open standard for digital provenance. He is on the ICT and Digital Economy advisory boards for the UK Science Council EPSRC.
Prof. Ohad Ben-Shahar
Ohad Ben-Shahar is a Professor of Computer Science at the Computer Science department, Ben Gurion University (BGU), Israel. He received his [B.Sc](http://b.sc/). and [M.Sc](http://m.sc/). in Computer Science from the Technicon (Israel Institute of Technology) in 1989 and 1996, respectively, and his M.Phill and PhD From Yale University, CT, USA in 1999 and 2003, respectively. He is a former chair of the Computer Science department and the present head of the School of Brain Sciences and Cognition at BGU. Prof Ben-Shahar’s research area focuses on computational vision, with interests that span all aspects of theoretical, experimental, and applied vision sciences and their relationship to cognitive science as a whole. He is the founding director of the interdisciplinary Computational Vision Laboratory (iCVL), where research involves theoretical computational vision, human perception and visual psychophysics, visual computational neuroscience, animal vision, applied computer vision, and (often biologically inspired) robot vision. He is a principle investigator in numerous research activities, from basic research animal vision projects through applied computer vision, data sciences, and robotics consortia, many of them funded by agencies such as the ISF, NSF, DFG, the National Institute for Psychobiology, The Israeli Innovation Authority, and European frameworks such as FP7 and Horizon 2020.
Call for Papers
The workshop calls for papers on the topics (but not limited to):
- Art History and Computer Vision
- 3D reconstruction from visual art or historical sites
- Multi-modal multimedia systems and human machine interaction
- Visual Question & Answering (VQA) or Captioning for Art
- Computer Vision and cultural heritage
- Big-data analysis of art
- Security and legal issues in the digital presentation and distribution of cultural information
- Image and visual representation in art
- 2D and 3D human pose and gesture estimation in art
- Multimedia databases and digital libraries for artistic research
- Interactive 3D media and immersive AR/VR for cultural heritage
- Approaches for generative art
- Media content analysis and search
- Surveillance and Behaviour analysis in Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums
Deadlines & Submissions
- Full & Extended Abstract Paper Submission: 27th May 2022 (23:59 UTC-0)
- Notification of Acceptance: 30th June 2022
- Camera-Ready Paper Due: 12th July 2022
- Workshop: TBA (23-27th October 2022)
- Submission site: https://cmt3.research.microsoft.com/VISART2022/
The VISART VI 2022 edition of the workshop has been organised by:
- Alessio Del Bue, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT)
- Peter Bell, Philipps-Universität Marburg
- Leonardo Impett, University of Cambridge
- Noa Garcia, Osaka University
- Stuart James, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) & University College London Centre for Digital Humanities (UCL DH)
By rmapapg, on 30 March 2022
UCLDH was fortunate to be awarded funds through UKRI’s Research Capital Investment Fund in 2019 in a bid led by our previous director Prof Simon Mahony. The bid funded the purchase of a Bruker Tornado M4+ x-ray fluorescence scanner. This is a unique system that uses x-rays to excite the atoms making up a substance which then emit x-rays that are characteristic of the elements making up the sample. The beam is narrow and scans across an object, allowing an image to be built up of the elemental composition. It is situated in the UCLDH Digitisation Suite, with radiation safety provided by the Department of Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering.
The system was delivered in February 2020. Events then conspired to delay its commissioning until Summer 2021. It is now fully functional and we are familiarising ourselves with its performance. Importantly, the system is capable of running under a vacuum which allows lighter elements to be detected than is possible with other similar systems. We are in the process of installing a helium pump which will mean we can image objects containing light elements without needing a vacuum. This is important for many objects of relevance to DH including paper and parchment documents which can be damaged by a vacuum.
We were approached by colleagues at the Natural History Museum who had prepared a paper describing a new fossil that needed an image of the elemental composition, exactly what this system can provide. The fossil was of a edrioasteroid, a relative of starfish and sea urchins. With the help of Tobias Salge from the Museum, we scanned the fossil overnight. The x-ray scans supported their other analysis, which showed that its skeleton was partially mineralised and partly soft. Its ancestors had had fully mineralised skeletons which mean that this was the earliest example of an organism that had lost a previously mineralised skeleton. The x-ray fluorescence imaging was able to show that some elements (phosphorus and calcium) were enriched throughout the fossil, but others (iron, zinc and silicon) were enriched only in the hardened regions, suggesting a different elemental composition in life.
This was an exciting departure for a system that was purchased to support research in DH, but imaging this fossil was too good an opportunity to miss. The work has been published in the Proceedings of Royal Society B:
Zamora Samuel, Rahman Imran A., Sumrall Colin D., Gibson Adam P. and Thompson Jeffrey R. (2022) Cambrian edrioasteroid reveals new mechanism for secondary reduction of the skeleton in echinoderms Proc. R. Soc. B. 289: 20212733 http://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2021.2733
By Lucy Stagg, on 14 March 2022
An article co-authored by UCLDH team member, Prof Julianne Nyhan and co-author, Dr Alexandra Ortolja-Baird, has been nominated for a Digital Humanities award.
As explained on the Digital Humanities Awards website:
Digital Humanities Awards are a set of annual awards where the public is able to nominate resources for the recognition of talent and expertise in the digital humanities community. The resources are nominated and voted for entirely by the public. The weeding out by the nominations committee is solely based on the criteria of “Is it DH?”, “Can voters see it?”, “Is it in the right category?”, and “Was it launched/published/majorly updated in that year?”. These awards are intended as an awareness raising activity, to help put interesting DH resources in the spotlight and engage DH users (and general public) in the work of the community. Awards are not specific to geography, language, conference, organization or field of humanities that they benefit. Any suitable resource in any language or writing system may be nominated in any category. DH Awards actively encourages representation from more minority languages, cultures, and areas of DH. All nominated resources are worth investigating to see the range of DH work out there.
There is no financial prize associated with these community awards. The nominations procedure is overseen by an international nominations committee who will decide on final candidates for each category based on whether they meet the above criteria.
The nominated article is available via open access: Encoding the haunting of an object catalogue: on the potential of digital technologies to perpetuate or subvert the silence and bias of the early-modern archive Alexandra Ortolja-Baird, Julianne Nyhan, Digital Scholarship in the Humanities, fqab065, https://doi.org/10.1093/llc/fqab065 (October 2021)
The abstract for the paper summarises:
The subjectivities that shape data collection and management have received extensive criticism, especially with regards to the digitization projects and digital archives of galleries, libraries, archives and museums (GLAM institutions). The role of digital methods for recovering data absences is increasingly receiving attention too. Conceptualizing the absence of non-hegemonic individuals from the catalogues of Sir Hans Sloane as an instance of textual haunting, this article will ask: to what extent do data-driven approaches further entrench archival absences and silences? Can digital approaches be used to highlight or recover absent data? This article will give a decisive overview of relevant literature and projects so as to examine how digital tools are being realigned to recover, or more modestly acknowledge, the vast, undocumented network of individuals who have been omitted from canonical histories. Drawing on the example of Sloane, this article will reiterate the importance of a more rigorous ethics of digital practice, and propose recommendations for the management and representation of historical data, so cultural heritage institutions and digital humanists may better inform users of the absences and subjectivities that shape digital datasets and archives. This article is built on a comprehensive survey of digital humanities’ current algorithmic approaches to absence and bias. It also presents reflections on how we, the authors, grappled with unforeseen questions of absence and bias during a Leverhulme-funded collaboration between the British Museum and University College London (UCL), entitled ‘Enlightenment Architectures: Sir Hans Sloane’s Catalogues of his collections’.
By Lucy Stagg, on 25 February 2022
We’re delighted to help relaunch the Decoding Digital Humanities London reading group. Decoding Digital Humanities London (DDHL) is a bi-weekly reading group for anyone interested in research at the intersection of computational technologies and the humanities.
These gatherings will provide an opportunity to discuss readings, raise awareness of topics at the forefront of research, and spark new questions. DDHL aims to be place for connection for the digital humanities post-graduate community, but welcomes participation from anyone who is interested.
The series was originally set up by staff and students at UCLDH as a series of informal monthly meetings to get together and discuss matters of interest to our discipline. It has now expanded to be a London wide event and is currently organised by students from UCL, Michael Donnay and Anna Mladentseva.
As part of an effort to make sessions more accessible, 3 sessions will meet virtually (via Zoom), while the other 3 will be in-person at UCL’s Bloomsbury Campus in London. Snacks will be provided for the in-person sessions. All sessions are 6:30-7:30pm London time. Register and get links to the articles for discussion here.
Wednesday, 27.4.22 – IN-PERSON DDHL reading group ‘Glitch Feminism: Error as Artmaking’
Wednesday, 11.5.22 – ONLINE DDHL Student Dissertation Presentations
Wednesday, 25.5.22 – IN-PERSON DDHL Staff Presentation – Topic TBD
By Adam Crymble, on 9 February 2022
We are very pleased to announce the programme for the 2022 Digital Humanities Longview (virtual) seminar series, co-hosted with our friends at CESTA (Stanford, US) and the Centre for Digital Humanities (Uppsala, Sweden). In this our second year of the series, our focus is on the idea that technology is global, but where we live affects how we apply digital solutions to humanities work. We all have what Roopika Risam described as a digital humanities (DH) “accent”. This seminar series explores those accents by looking at DH research here, and there, and over there too. This is a chance to build greater global awareness and empathy about regional and local approaches to digital humanities in the twenty-first century.
It’s an opportunity for newcomers to understand how the field has developed differently around the globe, and for established practitioners to consider their work as part of a larger movement with competing influences, ambitions, and blindspots.
- 10 March 2022 (5pm): Dr Nirmala Menon (IIT Indore), ‘Decolonizing Knowledge Infrastructures: Open Access and Multilingual Scholarly Publishing’ [Register to attend]
- 7 April 2022 (5pm): Dr Grant Parker (Stanford), ‘Curating enslaved pasts of the Cape of Good Hope’ [Register to attend]
- 21 April 2022 (5pm): Dr Ale Pålsson & Victor Wilson (Uppsala) ‘SWECARCOL. Swedish Caribbean Colonialism 1784–1878: Research, Challenges and Opportunities for Caribbean Digital History’ [Register to attend]
- 5 May 2022 (5pm): Dr Roopika Risam (Salem State University), ‘To be confirmed’ [Register to attend]
- 19 May 2022 (5pm): Professor Tim Williams (UCL), ‘Central Asia and the Role of Digital Heritage Inventories’ [Register to attend]
- 2 June 2022 (5pm): Jessie Loyer (Mount Royal University), ‘To be confirmed’ [Register to attend]
By Lucy Stagg, on 15 December 2021
UCL Dept of Information Studies are seeking an innovative researcher and experienced lecturer to appoint to a full-time post beginning in March 2022.
They are particularly interested in applicants with demonstrable experience and expertise in cross disciplinary research which intersects with one or more of the broad areas represented in the Department, which includes Digital Humanities.
The post holder will be Programme Director for the new BSc Information in Society which will be offered from 2024 by the Department from the new UCL East campus within the School for the Creative & Cultural Industries (SCCI).
You can read more and apply on UCL’s job portal
By Lucy Stagg, on 3 December 2021
At the end of this year Prof Julianne Nyhan will be stepping down as UCLDH Director to focus on her new AHRC-funded project, The Sloane Lab: Looking back to build future shared collections. Our Deputy Director, Prof Tim Weyrich also stepped down earlier this year as he became Professor of Digital Reality at Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU).
We are very pleased to announce that from January 2021 our new Director will be Steven Gray, Associate Professor at the Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA). Steve has been an Associate Director at UCLDH since 2018 and he has over 10 years of professional software development under his belt. In recent years he has specialised on building mobile applications (mainly iOS) and systems that open up the world of data visualisation, mining and analysis to the masses.
We are also delighted to introduce our new Deputy Director, Dr Adam Crymble. Adam is a Lecturer in Digital Humanities in the Department of Information Studies. Adam is a scholar of migration, community, and diversity. He also researches digital humanities and the ways technology changes scholarly practice, and is an editor of the Programming Historian.
We’re excited to see how our new leadership develops and regenerates the centre and the interdisciplinary research we foster and support.