The digital arts and humanities involve the application of digital technologies to humanities and arts research and pedagogy.
As digital technologies become increasingly accessible, omnipresent, and adaptable, they offer exciting new directions for arts and humanities research and creative activity. New capacities for archiving, displaying, publishing, and organizing data present opportunities for arts and humanities faculty to think creatively about innovative methods for collecting, using, storing, analyzing, and presenting their work. These digital formats also present unique scholarly questions about the nature of knowledge and information, the ethics of its representation, and possibilities for engaging a variety of audiences beyond traditional academic networks. IDAH supports the exploration of these issues through collaborative work between arts and humanities faculty, and faculty working with other digital technologies, as well as librarians, technical staff, and other professionals.
IDAH Faculty Fellowships provide opportunities to develop an arts or humanities research or creative project in digital directions, ideally working towards a grant proposal that will fund the implementation of a larger project.
How does IDAH help in this process? IDAH works with both fellows who are digital specialists as well as fellows who wish to explore digital possibilities for their work. IDAH can help fellows determine the technologies and digital applications best suited to their projects, as well as suggest relevant grant opportunities. IDAH partners with the Libraries' Digital Collections Services, the Advanced Visualization Lab, UITS Cyberinfrastructure for Digital Humanities, the Pervasive Technology Institute, the Archives of Traditional Music, and University Information and Technology Services and acts as a gateway for scholars and professionals to access these units. IDAH also facilitates occasional seminars throughout the academic year to provide opportunities for Fellows to discuss their projects and pursue interdisciplinary collaborations.
Working towards the goal of assisting fellows as they apply for major grant funding, IDAH together with its digital project advisors help faculty fellows source technical assistance for developing small-scale prototypes of digital projects for the conception and development of a project.
Development of prototypes helps IDAH and the faculty fellow assess whether the digital project is feasible using existing technology or whether the creation of new technologies is desirable. When applying for grant support, the fellow can provide funding agencies with access to the prototype to aid in their evaluation of the grant proposal.
IDAH’s technical and intellectual support is intended to help faculty fellows address broad intellectual and creative issues in the digital arts and humanities.
IDAH helps fellows assess how the use of emerging digital technologies can expand and sustain intellectual inquiry and creativity in their own work, and in the arts and humanities world generally, such as:
- Assessing how GIS mapping technology can allow spatial and temporal representation of data in the discipline of history
- Applying interactive web tools to create ethnographic experiences for anthropology classrooms
- Finding ways to archive the interactive interfaces created in virtual reality art exhibits
- Using open source collections-based web publishing platforms like Omeka or open source authoring and publishing platforms like Scalar to display scholarly documents and audiovisual files
With the broad impact of a digital approach in mind, IDAH can help fellows integrate this approach into the technical and intellectual realization of their individual projects.
From 2008-2012 IDAH sponsored a Brown Bag Presentation Series which brought interdisciplinary research in digital arts and humanities to a wider university audience. The series showcased scholars exploring a variety of digital frontiers of research and creative activity in the arts and humanities. A list of presentations including audio and video links may be accessed here.
Since 2013 IDAH has focused on supporting and promoting the Digital Libraries Brown Bag Series, the Catapult Digital Humanities and Computational Analysis Workshop Series and the Libraries' Scholar's Commons Series.
IDAH also partners with IUB departments to sponsor campus visits of digital arts and humanities scholars for workshops and keynote addresses. A list of co-sponsored events may be accessed here.