Developing academic capacity in digital humanities: Thoughts from the Canadian community




Siemens, Lynne

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Digital Humanities Quarterly


Despite DH’s long history, it is still perceived as a relatively emergent academic discipline which has several implications for its ongoing development and acceptance. In order to understand its role in supporting the field’s development and acceptance, SSHRC commissioned a survey of the larger Humanities and Social Science’s community to understand the issues related to DH’s development and acceptance and the types of activities that should be funded. The survey results suggest there is reason for optimism regarding the growing acceptance of digital methods, resources and tools and electronic dissemination as instructors, researchers, and students are using and publishing in digital outlets and creating and employing digital recourses, methods and tools andventuring into new research fields. This trend is likely to continue as students and younger scholars continue to embrace the digital in all aspects of their personal and professional lives. However, this optimism should be tempered to some extent as students and junior faculty are still less likely than associate professors to present and publish their digital-oriented research for a variety of reasons. The field’s more senior faculty can mentor their junior colleagues and students to this end and shape salary, tenure and promotion policies to recognize and reward these efforts. Finally, issues remain around the amount of funding required for the initial development and ongoing sustainability and relevance of digital resources and may become more critical over time. Granting agencies will need to evaluate their funding role in this regard.




Siemens, L. (2013). Developing academic capacity in digital humanities: Thoughts from the Canadian community. Digital Humanities Quarterly, 7(1).