Digital Humanities Research Group
Digital Humanities Research Group
Digital Humanities Research Group
Digital Humanities Research Group
Digital Humanities Research Group


The Digital Humanities Research Group (DHRG) is broadly concerned with mediating between computing and humanities, and between technical and non-technical disciplines. Key challenges for digital humanities at this stage of its development as a field include articulating its research agenda as a humanistic and computing discipline; promoting and supporting fruitful interaction between computational science and the arts and humanities; linking digital humanities with new media research and media theory; and bridging between digital cultural studies and the social sciences more generally.

The mission of the Digital Humanities Research Group is to enhance research practices in the interdisciplinary humanities and social sciences at Western Sydney University by fostering the innovative application of computing and media. The goals of the Digital Humanities Research Group are:

  1. To be a highly productive hub that is a catalyst for and producer of high quality interdisciplinary digital collaborative research;
  2. To provide a framework to bring together University-wide expertise in digital research, including for project management and governance;
  3. To foster close interaction between leading-edge technological development and the full spectrum of humanities and social sciences research; and
  4. To be recognised as distinctive in research and teaching for the close relationship fostered between humanities and computer science.

DHRG has four Research Programs: (1) Resource Design, Curation and Infrastructure; (2) Modelling and Simulation; (3) Visualisation and Perception; and (4) Studies of Knowledge Practices. The Group also has a growing role in developing digital humanities curriculum, and this has included a number of new units at undergraduate and postgraduate level.  

Supporting the University's Securing Success 2015-2015 Strategic Plan, DHRG activities and outputs contribute to Western's high ERA ranking in the Cultural Studies, History and Linguistics fields of research as well as a range of other disciplinary areas, including Law, and Information and Computing Sciences. As the Group moves from establishment to a consolidation and capacity building phase, its focus will be on refinement of program areas and development of projects that can attract external funding in a wider range of income categories. Maintaining momentum and fostering a culture of high quality project design and pro-active grant-seeking will be central to DHRG's aspirations and planning as it enters its next phase.

Recent Publications

Advancing Digital Humanities

Edited by Paul Longley Arthur, Katherine Bode (2014, Palgrave Macmillan)

Advancing Digital Humanities moves beyond definition of this dynamic and fast-growing field to show how its arguments, analyses, findings, and theories are pioneering new directions in the humanities globally. Contributions cover digital methods, critical curation, and research futures, with theoretical and practical chapters framed around key areas of activity, including modelling collections, data-driven analysis, and thinking through building. These are linked through the concept of 'ambitious generosity', a way of working to pursue large-scale research questions while supporting and enabling other research areas and approaches, both within and beyond the academy.

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Humanities Computing

By Willard McCarty (new edition 2014, originally published 2005, Palgrave Macmillan)

The aim of this book is to provide a rationale for a computing practice that is of and for as well as in the humanities. It engages with many critical perspectives to show how computing helps us fulfil the basic mandate of the humane sciences to ask ever better questions. It explores the challenges of imagining and constructing new scholarly resources. It strengthens current practice by stimulating debate on the role of the computer across all disciplines, examining and developing the key notions of collaboration and interdisciplinarity.

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