Utrecht University

The aim of DH at Utrecht is to build on and expand activities in games research, in text and data mining (including audio-visual data) and in ways of innovatively representing, analysing and visualising research data.

A central ambition is to set up a closer collaboration between the Faculty of Humanities and the Utrecht Department of Information and Computing Sciences.

Expanding and diversifying activities

GAP, the Center for the Study of Digital Games and Play, is dedicated to sharing expertise about the study of computer games. GAP is based in the faculty of the Humanities, and participates in the focus area Game Research at Utrecht University. Games play an increasingly important role in society, and expanding and broadening this research area is therefore an important goal.

An increasing amount of data has either been digitised or is digitally born, and at Utrecht University research into ‘big data’ is a major theme. Audio-visual data are deployed through EUscreenXL, which acts as the pan-European aggregator for Europeana. Utrecht also serves as the centre for CLARIN ERIC, the common Language Resources and Technology Infrastructure for the Humanities. The Utrecht Data School investigates usage of social media in research commissioned by third parties such as businesses and non-profit organizations.

Within ‘cultural text mining’ projects such as Translantis and Asymenc, tools have been built and implemented in collaboration with DH groups and research centres in and outside the Netherlands, including the E-Science Centre. Cooperation between DH groups in the Faculty of Humanities and the Department of Information and Computing Sciences at Utrecht has resulted in the Golden Agents project, which seeks to collect and explore a vast amount of archival data concerning the seventeenth century.

The Utrecht Digital Humanities Lab directly supports the development of digital methods and technologies. The Lab builds tailor-made tools for researchers, on the basis of an open call, covering a wide array of topics, ranging from research into language abilities using apps to visualizations of the way artists have worked from 1500 to 1950.

List of themes

  • Games and gaming
  • Network analysis
  • Big data / data analysis (including audio-visual data)
  • Text and sentiment mining
  • Digital citizenship