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Digital Humanities

This guide provides an introduction to digital humanities (DH) theory and practice and an overview of DH methods, tools, and resources.

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What is Humanities Data?


Many humanists hear "data" and assume they don't have it, but humanities data can take many forms, including images, music, poetry, short stories, and more. It is not necessarily quantitative.

Some helpful introductions to Humanities Data

“An Introduction to Humanities Data Curation” by Julia Flanders (Northeastern University) and Trevor Muñoz (Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities)

"Humanities Data: A Necessary Contradiction" by Miriam Posner (UCLA)

"Big? Smart? Clean? Messy? Data in the Humanities" by Christof Schöch (University of Trier, Germany)

Data Management for Humanists

Federal grant-funding agencies often  require "data management plans" (DMPs) alongside grant applications to receive funding. It is important to properly assess, document, store, archive, and share your data - it will save you headaches down the road by making it easier to find, use, and analyze your data in the long term, as well as facilitate collaboration with colleagues.

Several universities and organizations are developing the DMPTool to help researchers meet new data management requirements from many U.S. funding agencies. The DMPTool will help researchers:

  • Create ready-to-use data management plans for specific funding agencies.
  • Meet requirements for data management plans.
  • Get step-by-step instructions and guidance for data management plan.
  • Learn about resources and services available at your institution to fulfill the data management requirements of their grants.

DMP Tool Web Site

DMP Tool Blog

Learn more about Open Data from SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition)

UC Data Repositories and Services

Repository service that enables UC users to manage, archive, and share digital content including data; can be used for long-term preservation, sharing, or meeting a grant’s data sharing and preservation requirements.

The Dryad Digital Repository is a curated resource that makes research data discoverable, freely reusable, and citable. Dryad provides a general-purpose home for a wide diversity of data types.

The eScholarship suite of open access publishing services gives UC scholars direct control over the creation and dissemination of the full range of their research. eScholarship Publishing provides comprehensive publication services for UC-affiliated departments, research units, publishing programs, and individual scholars who seek to publish original, open access journals, books, conference proceedings, and other original scholarship.

A service for researchers and others to obtain and manage long-term identifiers for digital content including data, which makes digital objects easier to access and verify, thus increasing re-use and citations; contact Digital Scholarship Services (DSS) for more information.

ORCID is a nonprofit organization helping create a world in which all who participate in research, scholarship and innovation are uniquely identified and connected to their contributions and affiliations, across disciplines, borders, and time. ORCID provides a persistent digital identifier (an ORCID iD) that you own and control, and that distinguishes you from every other researcher. You can connect your iD with your professional information — affiliations, grants, publications, peer review, and more.

Step by step instructions on how to get your unique ORCID identifier.

Humanities Data Workshop

Humanities Data Resources

Free Humanities Data Resources

DataBasic is a suite of easy-to-use web tools for beginners that introduce concepts of working with data. These simple tools make it easy to work with data in fun ways, so you can learn how to find great stories to tell.

OSF is a free, open use platform that can help students and research find publications, data, and potential collaborators. Users can search for papers and data, add existing collaborators, and store data an other matierals in OSF storage. Users can also add their own research, or research preprints, in the OSF database so others can use and cite their work, and OSF will collect impact metrics. 

NADAC is a repository owned by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) which collects and stores humanities and cultural data for use by students, researchers, and the general public. 

"Our archive contains a wide range of data collected from large-scale social media platforms such as X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, Instagram, and Reddit, as well as smaller, more specialized data sets focused on specific research topics. These data sets have been collected and curated by researchers from around the world, and they cover various topics such as political communication, online behavior, and social networks. The data in our archive takes two forms. They can be public, i.e., available for immediate download, and/or restricted, i.e., available within our secure data enclave after receiving approval following a submitted restricted data application"

Open Context is a research management and publishing tool that can help researchers plan and prepare data, clean and organize data, linked data published on Open Context to similar data sources from across the web, create stable identifiers for data published on Open Context (URI & DOI), create a digital archive of published data, and help facilitate collaboration with other publishers. Open Context publishes with a Creative Commons license.