ACLS Digital Innovation Fellows

The ACLS Digital Innovation Fellowship program supports digitally based research projects in all disciplines of the humanities and humanities-related social sciences. It is hoped that projects of successful applicants will help advance digital humanistic scholarship by broadening understanding of its nature and exemplifying the robust infrastructure necessary for creating further such works.

2014-2015 marked the tenth and final year of the ACLS Digital Innovation Fellowship Program, generously funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Read more about this fellowship program.

Please note: affiliations shown are as of time of award. Please click on fellows' names for current information.

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Watch "Emerging Themes and Methods of Research: A Discussion with ACLS Fellows," an annual meeting session featuring recent ACLS fellows. 

Daniel J. Cohen
Daniel J. Cohen  |  Abstract
The web browser is the digital tool scholars use the most, yet this software remains for the most part a passive window into primary and secondary sources on the Internet. This project enhances the popular, open-source Firefox browser with critical tools for the humanist, including advanced methods for extracting, annotating, searching, and determining personal collections assembled from digital archives and other resources on the Web. This project also shows the utility of these tools and new digital research methods drawn from computer science by gathering thousands of letters written by Victorian scientists, and then analyzing language patterns within this body of correspondence to reassess the character of the scientific method and scientific disputes in the nineteenth century.

Assistant Professor, History and Art History, George Mason University  -  A Scholarly Web Browser as a Gateway into the Digital Humanities

Todd Samuel Presner
Todd Samuel Presner  |  Abstract
This project is an interactive, web-based research platform and collaborative authoring environment for analyzing the cultural, architectural, and urban history of a city space. Through a multiplicity of richly detailed, fully annotated digital maps connected together by interlinking "hotspots" at hundreds of key regions, structures, and streets over Berlin’s nearly 800 year history, the project brings the study of cultural and urban history together with the spatial analyses and modeling tools used by geographers.

Assistant Professor, Germanic Languages, Comparative Literature, and Jewish Studies, University of California, Los Angeles  -  Hypermedia Berlin: Cultural Studies of the City in the Age of New Media

Edward John Garrett
Edward John Garrett  |  Abstract
This project involves the creation of open source tools designed to facilitate collection-driven documentary linguistics, including a tool for the transcription, translation, annotation, time-coding, and metadata management of a large-scale audiovisual collection; and a cross-document multimedia concordancer enabling students, researchers, and community members to construct composite multimedia presentations from large-scale document collections. Although for general use, these tools are being tested on the Tibetan and Himalayan Digital Library's collection of Tibetan videos and associated transcripts. Along with a parsing tool capable of segmenting Tibetan words to a high degree of accuracy, this software suite is driving the creation of an innovative multimedia Tibetan dictionary and grammar illustrating the radically transformative effect of the shift from document-driven to collection-driven documentary linguistics.

Assistant Professor, English Language and Literature, Eastern Michigan University  -  Tools and Results in Collection-Driven Documentary Linguistics

F. Jamil Ragep
F. Jamil Ragep  |  Abstract
This international collaborative project makes available an online resource on the exact sciences in the premodern Islamic world. Providing information on the social, religious, intellectual, and political contexts in which this material was produced as well as its influence on other cultures, the research is accessible without charge to researchers in the field and to the public worldwide. The database includes works of 1700 scientists (astronomers, mathematicians, physicists, geographers) who span the entire Islamic world, from the eighth to the nineteenth centuries.

Professor, History of Science, University of Oklahoma  -  Islamic Scientific Manuscripts Initiative (ISMI) Database Project

Caren Kaplan
Caren Kaplan  |  Abstract
This project explores the links between popular culture, militarization, and identity politics in the US during the first Gulf War and its aftermath. An electronic representation animates the argument that location technologies and marketing techniques produce subjects of precision. Throughout the period between the end of the Vietnam and Gulf Wars, the quest for increased precision in weaponry, marketing, and identification processes emphasized increasingly specific identities or "targets." A web-based narrative guides users through three schemas to explore the military, entertainment, and marketing aspects of precision in the US during the 1990s.

Associate Professor, Women and Gender Studies, University of California, Davis  -  Precision Targets: US Consumer GPS and the Politics of Location in an Era of Technoscience and Global Restructuring