Developing shared resources for digital research

Article dated: 28 September 2009

At the end of July, Richard Deswarte, Head of the History Data Service (HDS), participated in the Developing Shared Resources for Digital Research in the Arts and Humanities workshop held at the e-Science Institute in Edinburgh.

This excellent venue is housed in a former Georgian church that has been very successfully renovated into a first rate twenty-first century research facility. That environment certainly enhanced and enabled debate including international participation from Ireland via teleconferencing. The two-day workshop brought together representatives of several communities of practice in the (digital) arts and humanities, including the HDS and the ADS, with members of the emerging UK Network of Expert Centres as well as staff from the project.

The primary focus of the event was to consider how online resources, such as, can best support the wider digital arts and humanities community in terms of: technological information and advice; digital content including ongoing projects; community services; and models of collaboration. Issues discussed and debated included: the core needs of the community, as understood through our work and contacts; the accessibility and functionality of the web site; community input in the development of such resources; models for collaboration and data sharing between projects; and plans for future development. One particular focus was to establish how the Network of Centres can use to develop useful joint projects and services to support the wider community of researchers and practitioners engaging with the digital arts and humanities and more broadly with e-science generally.