Community Event
Event Details
Big Data and the Humanities


The Workshop on Big Humanities will be held in conjunction with the 2013 IEEE International Conference on Big Data (IEEE BigData 2013), which will take place between 6-9 October 2013 in Silicon Valley, California, USA, and which provides a leading international forum for disseminating the latest research in the growing field of “big data”.

The workshop will address applications of “big data” in the humanities, arts and culture, and the challenges and possibilities that such increased scale brings for scholarship in these areas.

The use of computational methods in the humanities is growing rapidly, with the increasing quantities of born-digital primary sources (such as emails, social media) and the large-scale digitisation programmes applied to libraries and archives. This has resulted in a range of interesting applications and case studies, and at the same time highlights the interpretative issues raised by applying such “hard” methods for answering subjective questions in the humanities.

Moreover, the questions and concerns raised by the humanities themselves have consequences for the interpretation in general of “big data” and the uses to which it is put, and the challenges of producing quality – meaning, knowledge and value – from  quantity. The workshop will thus also address complementary research that uses the humanities and its methods to provide a critical appraisal of “big data” in other areas, both inside and outside academia.