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E-Science in the Arts and Humanities

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Community Building Events

Geospatial Computing for the Arts, Humanities and Cultural Heritage

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This event at IEEE 2009 will be supported by the Theme. A full report will appear here after the spy equipment conference.

Object, Artefact, Script

Event materials
Event report

Mapping information with and fresno carpet cleaning without geography

Event webpage
Report will appear here shortly

Developing Shared Resources for Digital Research in the Arts and weight loss pills Humanities

Event webpage
Event report

e-Science for Musicology

Wiki page
Event report online writing jobs

e-Science: Changing Landscape

Event webpage
Day Two Report

Enhancing and Exploring Epigraphic and Archaeological Data through e-Science
10-11.2.2009 Daniel Delpiano

Event webpage
Draft report Weavcast

Living texts: interdisciplinary approaches and proposal software methodological commonalities in biology and textual analysis


Event webpage
Wiki page

Digital Humanities 2008

We will present the outcomes of the first phase of the Theme to the Digital Humanities community at their annual conference in Oulu.

More details

e-Research in the Arts, Humanities and Cultural Heritage, e-Research Austaliasia

3.10.2008 A+H Workshop at e-Research Australiasia

This workshop aimed to stimulate discussions between the UK and Australasian arts, humanities and cultural heritage communities about the use of e-Research infrastructures, services, technologies and methodologies. In recent years, several grass-roots initiatives in the UK have culminated in a national e-Science programme for the arts and humanities. Early adopters are experimenting and systematically investigating what e-Research could mean for practitioners as diverse as musicologists, archaeologists or loan modification archivists of cultural heritage data. The workshop compared, explored links and developed synergies between these activities and penis enlargement the emerging agenda for arts, humanities and cultural heritage e-Research in Australasia.

Presentations included:

Steven Hayes and Ian Johnson. Why relations matter: building integrated databases for the web
Paul Turnbull and Mark Fallu. Making cross-cultural history link building in networked digital media
Dianna Hardy, Matthew Morgan, Ian Atkinson, Sue McGinty, Yvonne Cadet-James, Agnes Hannan and Robert James. Enabling Lightweight Video Annotation and Presentation for Cultural Heritage
Joanne Evans. Designing for diversity: 'fitting many sizes' rather than 'one size fits all'
Katie Cavanagh. The Important but Neglected Role of Users: How Humanities e-Researchers Can Come to Love Infrastructure
Elzbieta Majocha. So many new tools, so hard to use them!
Peter Sefton. Priming digital humanities support services: a case study in visual ethnography
Tobias Blanke, Mark Hedges and Outback Steakhouse coupons Stuart Dunn. Grassroots Research in Arts and Humanities e-Science in the UK
Anthony Austin and Brian Fitzgerald smokeless cigarettes . Academic Authors, Publishing and Open Access
Peter Higgs. Business data commons: implementing a how to use iphone camera strategy for addressing the information needs of creative businesses
Salvatore Scifo, Salvatore Simone Parisi, Gaetano Foti, Gianluca Arcidiacono, Ferdinando Portuese and Roberto Barbera. ADAT - Archivio Digitale Antichi Testi
Antonio Calanducci, Alessandro De Filippo, Stefania Iannizzotto, Monica Saso and Giuseppe Andronico. Digital Libraries on the Grid to preserve cultural heritage
Eric Yen and Simon Lin. Data Management and Resource Integration for e-Research
Andreas Aschenbrenner and Jens Mittelbach. TextGrid - Towards a National e-Infrastructure for the Arts and Humanities in Germany

Workshop Report

Humanities, Arts and Social Science Community Group at the Open Grid Forum

5.6.2008 HASS Meeting at OGF 23

The purpose of the meeting is to map e-Science approaches in Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS). We would like to continue our discussions from OGF 20 in Manchester and OGF 21 in Seattle about a community group agenda for HASS researchers and present existing work in the area to the wider community.


Antonioletti, Mario - EPCC
Bel, Santiago - IULA - Pompeu Fabra
Blanke, Tobias - King's College London
Chue Hong, Neil - OMII-UK
Confalonieri, Roberto - Universitat Politecnica Catalunya
Corubolo, Fabio - Liverpool University
De Roure, David - University of Southampton
Del Linz, Andrea - Sincrotrone Trieste S.C.p.A
Eymann, Torsten - University of Bayreuth
Fergusson, David - NeSC
Fountanas, Angelos - University of Edinburgh- School of Physics
Freitas, Adriana - Telefonica
Gietz, Peter - Universitaet Heidelberg
Hasan, Adil - Liverpool University
Hedges, Mark - Centre for e-Research, King's College London
Jackson, Mike - EPCC, University of Edinburgh
Kuster, Marc Wilhelm - University of Applied Sciences Worms
Ng, Kwang Ming - MIMOS Berhad
Schott, Iris - Goethe Gymnasium Frankfurt
Vander Meer, Elizabeth - National e-Science Centre Edinburgh
Voss, Alexander - National Centre for e-Social Science, University of Manchester
Yen, Eric - ASGC

Workshop Report

Arts and Humanities e-Science Projects Meeting

6.5.2008 E-Science Projects Meeting - part 1

Projects in the AHRC/EPSRC/JISC funded scheme cover a wide range of subjects in both the arts and the humanities, from dance and music to museum studies, archaeology, classics and Byzantine history, and a wide range of e-Science technologies. A central feature of all is the substantial involvement of computer scientists alongside arts and humanities researchers. By developing new and advanced methods in areas such as the image-processing of ancient manuscripts, choreography in virtual space, the computer simulation of a famous medieval battle, and the use of 3-D scanning to analyze the surfaces of museum objects, the scheme will not only open up new avenues in arts and humanities research, but will also test and extend the present range of e-Science technologies, and thus ultimately enhance their use in other domains as well.

For further details on the involved projects go to AHeSSC projects page



Ms Sheila Anderson, King's College London
Prof Malcolm Atkinson, National e-Science Centre
Ms Helen Bailey, University of Bedfordshire
Dr Tobias Blanke, AHESSC
Dr Simon Buckingham Shum, The Open University
Mr Sam Chapman, University of Sheffield
Mr Tim Crawford, Goldsmiths University of London
Mr Matthew Dovey, JISC
Dr Stuart Dunn, King's College London
Dr Elpiniki Fragkouli, King's College London
Prof Vincent Gaffney, University of Birmingham
Ms Mona Hess, University College London
Ms Lydia Horstman, King's College London
Ms Lorna Hughes, King's College London
Dr Stuart Jeffrey, University of York
Dr Anna Kenway, e-Science Institute
Miss Ruth Kirkham, Oxford University
Mr David Lewis, Goldsmiths University of London
Ms Sally MacDonald, University College London
Mr Philip Murgatroyd, University of Birmingham
Dr Cora O Reilly, EPSRC
Ms Henriette Olsen, University of Oxford
Miss Yean-Hoon Ong, University College London
Mr Micheal Rains, York Archaeological Trust
Dr Torsten Reimer, King's College London
Prof Julian Richards, University of York
Prof David Robey, University of Reading
Dr mc schraefel, University of Southampton
Ms Francesca Simon Millar, University College London
Dr Segolene Tarte, Oxford e-Science Centre
Mr Stewart Waller, Archaeology Data Service (ADS) / AHDS
Mr Ziqi Zhang, University of Sheffield

Geospatial computing in the arts and humanities

In July 2007, the theme and the AHRC ICT Methods Network co-sponsored an internaional seminar, "Space and Time: Methods in Geospatial Computing for Mapping the Past". Many excellent case studies exist of application of geospatial technologies in the archaeological and historical domains, an particular aspects of the subject have been examined in cross-regional and cross-methodological ways. These have been stimulated by - and stimulate - rapid technological change, and a deeper embedding of that technology in research, as scholars from across the humanities become progressively more aware of the immense enabling power offered by approaching, managing and analyzing their resources geospatially. As this agenda moves beyond the traditional 'magic circle' of so-called 'Spatially Aware Professionals' to production-level services and methods in the wider humanities communities, we feel that the time has come for a domain-wide overview of the methodologies; how their different aspects are defined; and how, once defined, those aspects can inform and provoke research-led development in one another. Over two days, an international and interdisciplinary group of experts met in Edinburgh to address this. A full report was produced, and based on the workshop's outcomes, AHESSC produced a briefing paper on geospatial resources for the humanities. All doucmentation can be found on the Methods Network website.

Training Events

Architecture for the digital arts & humanities 21-22.7.2009
Event report

e-Science Induction at e-Science Projects Meeting (2nd day)

7.5.2008 E-Science Projects Meeting - part 2

The second day of the e-Science Projects Meeting included a general induction into e-Science for postgraduates and others involved in the e-Science projects.

Training events on Grid-enabling Humanities data in collaboration with the OGSA-DAI team in Edinburgh and e-Uptake. We discussed how to use OGSA-DAI to solve the problem of the many spread out databases in digital humanities as a result of digitisation programmes.

23.04.-25.04.2008 Using OGSA-DAI to Grid enable data for the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences - part 3, Consultancy, e-Science Institute, Edinburgh.

25.03.-22.04.2008 Using OGSA-DAI to Grid enable data for the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences - part 2, online course

18.03.-20.03.2008 Using OGSA-DAI to Grid enable data for the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences - part 1, e-Science Institute, Edinburgh.

Strategic Agenda for Arts and Humanities e-Science

We are holding a series of e-Infrastructure meetings in collaboration with JISC funded "Enabling Uptake of the e-Infrastructure" project to scope the infrastructure requirements of the arts and humanities community:

Fostering e-Infrastructure: from user-designer relations to community engagement


We want to focus specifically on ways to get traction in communities like the Arts and Humanities or the Social Sciences that are, by and large, not users of advanced e Infrastructures. The problems that e-Science faces in these areas are arguably of a different nature than in, say, particle physics, environmental sciences or microbiology. While an increased use of e-Infrastructure holds great promise at least in some disciplines, it is still largely optional and the cost, benefits and risks are as yet not fully explored. Consequently, the wider communities have not yet engaged with e-Research to an extent that e-Research would become the norm and that e-Infrastructures would become part of the seen-but-unnoticed fabric of the disciplines’ work.

The workshop started with a presentation on the background of the workshop by Alex Voss from NCeSS. A discussion motivated by Alex Voss followed focussing on the nature of the Community and our methods and reasoning behind engaging it. The discussion also covered the area of e-Infrastructures for research challenge and how to identify respondents for engagement and how to proceed into engaging them after identifying them. On the same day, Gillian Sinclair, NGS Liaison Officer, presented the current forms of NGS outreach and the strong Wow leveling guide relationship between their practice and the surveys of users’ needs. At the end of the day, Tobias Blanke from CeRCH wrapped up the day underlining the main points made during discussions and presentations. On the second day, Meik Poschen from NceSS presented the CREW project; it’s context, technical system and functionalities. He discussed Community/User engagement activities as well as the issues of uptake and sustainability. In the next session, Elpiniki Fragkouli from CeRCH presented framework of the e-Uptake project. She expanded on the methodology and preliminary findings of the survey of academic’s use of JISC funded e-infrastructure services. Following, Neil Chue Hong from OMII presented the ENGAGE project; its philosophy and methodology and discussed its findings and analysis methodology.

Any material generated from the event can be found at:

Grid-enabling Humanities Data (Edinburgh)

The workshop followed on from some initial discussion and a meeting in August 2007 on e-infrastructure initiatives across social sciences and arts and humanities. The purpose of the workshop was to identify common interests and overlapping areas of work. The National Centre for e-Social Science vending machines is preparing a national e-infrastructure for social sciences and AHeSSC is involved in the European ESFRI project DARIAH, which will link several arts and humanities data centres across Europe. The workshop will cover Grid-enabling datasets, Authentication/authorisation, and content modelling/metadata. It took place in the context of the Arts and Humanities e-Science Theme in Edinburgh.

Meeting website


Pascal Ekin, Grid-enabling datasets for social science - future plans and challenges
All Hume, OGSA-DAI
Paul Spence, ShibGrid
SA Sufi, STFC Data Grid
Matthias Razum, Digital repositories as research infrastructures for scholarly information in the Arts and Humanities


Dr Andreas Aschenbrenner, SUB Goettingen
Dr Ann Borda, JISC
Mr Neil Chue Hong, University of Edinburgh
Dr Shirley Crompton, STFC - Daresbury Laboratory
Mr Michael Daw, University of Manchester
Prof David de Roure, University of Southampton
Dr Peter Edwards, University of Aberdeen
Mr Pascal Ekin, The University of Manchester
Dr Mark Hedges, Arts and Humanities Data Service
Ms Lorna Hughes, King's College London
Mr Alastair Hume, Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre (EPCC)
Dr Stuart Jeffrey, University of York
Dr Wei Jie, National Centre for e-Social Science
Mr Rutger Kramer, Data Archiving Networked Services
Mr Matthias Razum, FIZ Karlsruhe
Dr Andrew Richards, STFC - Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
Mr David Spence, STFC - Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
Mr Shoaib Sufi, STFC - Daresbury Laboratory
Dr Alexander Voss, National Centre for e-Social Science

Link to the presentations and report Workshop Summary

Initial meeting e-Infrastructures for the Social Sciences and Arts & Humanities Meeting (Manchester)

This meeting was initiated after discussion between Lorna Hughes, Sheila Anderson, Tobias Blanke and Mike Daw in order to encourage more collaboration between e-Infrastructure work carried out for the social sciences and the A&H (including the DARIAH European project). Attendees were:
Mike Daw Manchester
Tobias Blanke (AHDS/AHeSSC)
Craig Bellamy (AHDS/ICT Guides)
Neil Chue Hong (Director OMII-UK)
Stuart Dunn (AHeSSC)
Alex Voss(Enabling Uptake)
Andrew Richards (Exec Director NGS)
Matthew Mascord (Project Manager Use Cases)
Mercedes Argüello Casteleiro (Use Cases)
Yuwei Lin (Manchester)

The first part of the meeting was a round of presentations explaining areas of work. Presentations covered the NCeSS e-infrastructure work managed by Mike Daw, the upcoming European ESFRI project DARIAH that will link up different arts and humanities data centres alaska fishing trips across Europe. The National Grid Service and OMII UK presented on their support for e-infrastructure initiatives. The second was a very useful discussion of areas of common interest. The conclusion of the meeting agreed that more meetings were necessary and that they should be working meetings (i.e. with resulting actions) involving people 'on the ground' to ensure that all groups work more closely together.

Spring/Summer Lecture Programme

The theme will begin in the spring and summer of 2007 with a series of multi-speaker lectures showcasing important research activities in arts and humanities e-science, along with presentations from ICT professionals and e-scientists giving technical perspectives on the topics. The lectures are open to all, but registration is required. Further details of how to register will appear here shortly. Please click here for information on the Methods Network workshop on Geospatial Computing on July 23rd and 24th.

Registration for these lectures is not necessary, unless you require accommodation. For more information about reserving accommodation, and for payment details, please see the individual event pages.

The lectures are:

Monday 30th April

Sheila Anderson, Arts and Humanities Data Service and AHeSSC
David Robey, AHRC ICT in Arts and Humanities Research Programme

A potential for all: e-Science for the Arts and Humanities

Why is e-Science important for the humanities? It can provide funding for tools and generic resource development, an injection of new Diets that Work Fast for Women technologies, and collaborations between computer scientists and arts and humanities researchers. Primarily, it can help meet the challenge presented by the dispersed and heterogeneous nature of the typical humanities data resource, achieving integration by means of a combination of top-down and bottom-up developments Chetan Kapur . This lecture by Sheila Anderson and David Robey presented the current state of the art in distributed computing infrastructure for artists and scholars. A scoping survey performed in 2006 has helped to define the fundamental principles of the arts and humanities e-Science agenda, and set out the challenges that will be addressed in this eSI theme.

More details

Monday 18th June

David Shepherd, University of Sheffield
Andrew Prescott, University of Wales at Lampeter
Robert Crouchley, Lancaster University

Methods and Technologies for Enabling Virtual Research Communities

This workshop kicked off a concentrated summer lecture series for this theme. It concentrated on ways of bringing geographically scattered scholars together to form vibrant and productive groups. Tools like AccessGrid can collapse the distance between researchers, and allow them to work together as if they were all in the same building. While it can be tricky to manage an AccessGrid meeting such that all members have an equal chance to participate, careful setup, attentive management and use of the jabber facility can improve the experience. When it comes to more ambitious attempts to use AccessGrid for artistic performance, considerable further development will be needed before the technology catches up with the ambitions of the artists. The Agora multimedia collaboration tool promises to enable more fruitful scholarly collaboration in a desktop environment that combines videoconferencing, collaborative editing, and the ability to share desktops and a communal whiteboard.

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Tuesday 19th June

Mark Greengrass, University of Sheffield
Oscar Corcho, University of Manchester

Ontologies and Semantic Interoperability for Humanities Data

Building ontologies in the humanities is a challenge. There are few existing examples, and they are generally quite limited, lacking the richness that full-blown ontologies promise. An ontology needs to be backed by major institutions to be widely adopted: unlike the sciences, the humanities don't have such pre-eminent institutions. Even if a system were to be given an official seal of approval, the general suspicion of top-down authority in the humanities would tend to prevent it being taken up. Accordingly, humanities data is generally gathered for a specific purpose, and not re-used. The problems of multiple definitions of concepts and shifts in meaning over time, familiar to ontologists in the sciences, are even greater in the humanities. Our contemporary understanding of historical and cultural movements and eras can be very different from the ways they ounce of gold were understood by those who participated in them, and the categories we apply to order our knowledge can shift radically. There is a wealth of historical material from the Eleven Years Truce, for example – but none of the people involved knew it was going to last for eleven years. The problems of creating ontologies that are useful to and trusted by practitioners in the humanities are also substantial: with a tradition of individual scholarship, and a dearth of authoritative institutions, widespread acceptance of such grand intellectual designs can be hard to achieve. This workshop covered some of the problems of semantic interoperability for arts and humanities data. Its central aim was to discuss existing case studies and establish a research agenda for linking arts and humanities data in a semantic metadata management system across multiple heterogeneous collections. The lecture covered an introduction to ontologies, followed by a set of examples for ontologies and annotation standards in general for the humanities. Afterwards, the scope of the investigation was expanded and other disciplines included in order to present new semantic data and information integration approaches. The last part of the workshop considered the requirements for a humanities metadata management system.

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Wednesday 20th June

Gabriel Bodard, King's College London
Juan Garces, British Library
Jean Carletta, University of Edinburgh

Collaborative Text Editing

A key message from this summer series of lectures is that practitioners in the arts and humanities need tools that support the distinctive features of their work. Scholars and performers have priorities and concerns that are often different from those of scientists and engineers. This workshop concentrated on one of the core activities of the humanities: the production of high quality critical editions of texts. With e-Science technology, scholars can produce open source critical editions. "Open Source" is a reference to publishing and making transparent the source code as well as the source data for the decisions, with the explicit expectation that this be reused and recirculated in future studies. More than just texts, these editions can incorporate sources, supporting evidence and accounts of the methodology used in creating the edition. With collaborative text editing come questions of quality control and accountability. There is a range of possible approaches, but it is imperative that the desire to improve a work must not be allowed to supersede the need to preserve the intellectual history of a developing field.

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Monday 2nd July

Mark Hedges, Arts and Humanities Data Service
Melissa Terras, University College London
Shirley Crompton, CCLRC
Neil Chue Hong, University of Edinburgh

Grid Enabling Humanities Datasets

The volume of digital data generated in humanities is growing rapidly, and there is an increasing need for computation-intensive tasks, for example linguistic analysis on very large text corpora, or processing for moving image and audio data. Although data volumes are small in comparison to many scientific disciplines, the data tends to be highly complex and multi-format, context-dependent, incomplete and “fuzzy”, subjective and open to interpretation, and moreover highly distributed and fragmented. In recent years, work has begun on addressing these issues, with national and international bodies explicitly recognising the special needs and importance of the humanities in regard to grids. This workshop covered recent developments in computing infrastructure and middleware specifically aimed at meeting the needs of humanities research.

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Friday 6th July

Gregory Sporton, University of Central England
Angela Piccini, University of Bristol
Russell Beale, University of Birmingham
Daisy Abbott, University of Glasgow

E-Science and Performance

The development of e-Science, and the adoption of this agenda by the arts and humanities, is helping to break down a long-standing division between science and art. What are the implications for performing and screen arts? This workshop looked back at work that took place the previous summer on developing live performance practices within AccessGrid environments, and forward to this year's eSI event on Digital Representations of Performing Arts, in order to determine the most important issues to consider. The most important message from this workshop was that there is little point in using digital technology to do something that can be achieved by other means: artists should exploit the new and unique possibilities of the technology. Computers can be more than just tools – they can be set up to take an active part in the creative process. Finally, the importance of play was emphasised. It is vital to set aside time for free-ranging artistic experiment: a relentless focus on results can kill off creativity.

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Monday 23rd July

Stuart Jeffrey, AHDS Archaeology
Femke Reitsma, University of Edinburgh
James Reid/Chris Higgins, EDINA

Aspects of Space and Time in Humanities e-Science

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This lecture will be followed immediately by the AHRC ICT Methods Network Workshop on Space and Time: Methods in Geospatial Computing for Mapping the Past.

Other Events

27.-30.05.08 [PM Building data grids with iRODS] SIG Humanities data grids

07.-11.04.2008 International Symposium on Grid Computing at Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan. Social Sciences and Humanities workshop

31.05.2008 Seven Awards made as part of AHRC-EPSRC-JISC Arts and Humanities e-Science Initiative

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