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Call for Submissions:Special Edition: The Future of Digital Methods for Complex Datasets International Journal of Humanities and Arts Computing

Call for Submissions:
Special Edition: The Future of Digital Methods for Complex Datasets
International Journal of Humanities and Arts Computing
IJHAC: A Journal of Digital Humanities

Abstracts Due: April 15, 2015
Full Chapters Due: August 1, 2015

Submit Abstracts electronically via .doc, .txt or .pdf to:
Jennifer Guiliano

noun: methodology; plural noun: methodologies
  1. a system of methods used in a particular area of study or activity.

Forty years on from the advent of digital humanities computing, there is a flood of case-study work that explores specific instances of computational methods (e.g. close and distant reading via textual analysis, visualization methods for social networks, etc) being developed and then utilized within the digital humanities. Yet, despite this cross-pollination of methodology to the humanities, little has been done to discuss methodology outside of the project-based context in either the contemporary or future contexts. We know the specific results of particular methods within a given project, but much less about how those processes and workflows would function outside of that singular dataset or specific area of study.  Several questions arising from current practice remain unanswered: Can Digital Methods fully realize the promise of humanities and arts-driven inquiry when confronted with complex datasets? Is Digital Methodology in conflict with efforts to conduct micro or local level analyses as it encourages the use of “Big Data” and other large-scale longue durée-type analyses? Does Digital Methodology offer its own problematic system of assumptions? What grounds have humanists ceded to scientists? What impact does this have on the tools created and the future of Digital Methodology? How should we train the next generation of scholars to deal with complex cultural records, and to interrogate and argue for tools suitable for humanities inquiry? This special edition of the International Journal of Arts and Humanities Computing (IJHAC) seeks submissions from scholars who explore what the future of Digital Methodology will be ten, fifteen, twenty or even fifty years in the future.

We seek contributions that might address the following:
  • In an environment where resources for humanities education are reduced, how might the decline of humanistic and artistic disciplines challenge the future of digital methods?
  • Is Digital Methodology for the Humanities & Arts something distinct from data science or other computational methods? Or alternately, has the underlying reliance on “data” forged a common methodology across previously distinct disciplines?
  • What might the critical theoretical perspectives (e.g. Feminist, post-colonial, etc) offer to Digital Methodology?
  • What problems might scholars need to account for in their digital methods if we anticipate a future where copyright, international law, and publishing systems become more restrictive?
  • How might conflicts between or syntheses of analog and digital methodologies lead to a richer system of approaches?
  • What might non-western systems of Digital Methodology bring to the future of the Digital Humanities?
  • How might digital techniques and approaches from other disciplines impact the future of Digital Humanities?
  • How might Digital Methodologies, Digital assumptions, and modes of thinking destabilize fundamental humanistic and artistic scholarly assumptions?

The Future of Digital Methods for Complex Datasets  invites applications from faculty, staff, graduate and undergraduate students, and staff from cultural heritage institutions, as well as the general public with a serious interest in digital humanities and/or arts methodology regardless of rank, position, or affiliation. Collaboratively authored submissions, submissions from minority applicants, and those located outside the US and Canada are especially welcomed.

Abstracts will be reviewed by the special edition co-editors in conjunction with IJHAC editors. Authors of selected abstracts will be invited to submit full manuscripts by 1 August 2015 with review of manuscripts taking place in August and September. The special edition will be published, in print and online, in 2016.        
Contributions to this special edition should take the form of critical essays, varying in length from 2,000–6,000 words inclusive of endnotes.  The editorial team will consult with authors of selected abstracts about the word count of their contributions. This special edition will be available in English and all materials should be submitted in English; however, authors are encouraged to make available non-english versions of their materials under the pre-print Green Open Access rules noted below.   

Questions regarding this CFP may be directed to Jennifer Guiliano or Mia Ridge at Dr. Guiliano is Assistant Professor of History at the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and co-director of the Humanities Intensive Learning & Teaching Institute, a US-based digital humanities training organization. Mia Ridge is completing her dissertation on historians and scholarly crowdsourcing at the Open University. She has been aCENDARI Visiting Research Fellow at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland (2014) and has had residencies at the Powerhouse Museum (Sydney, 2012) and the Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum (New York, 2012).

IJHAC is published on a Green Open Access basis, whereby authors are allowed to deposit a pre-publication version of their contribution on their personal or departmental web page and in their institutional repository. Authors are also permitted to deposit a pre-publication version of their contribution in a non-commercial subject repository one year after publication in print. Questions regarding this policy may be directed to: Laura Danielson, Managing Editor, at


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