Call for Participation



Scholarly Primitives

It has been twenty years since John Unsworth first formulated scholarly primitives as a set of recursive and interrelated functions that form the foundations of research activities across disciplines, theoretical frameworks or eras. Ever since, these basic scholarly functions  -- discovering, annotating, comparing, referring, sampling, illustrating and representing -- have proved to be useful not only for categorizing the fundamentals of knowledge production in the humanities, but also as a framework for conceptualizing Digital Humanities tools which support these processes.

The time is ripe to revisit and freshly interrogate both the notion and the scope of scholarly primitives. To what extent does this particular set of scholarly primitives still correspond to our understanding of what humanities scholars do on a day-to-day basis? Has our understanding of research workflows changed over time significantly enough to require a new classification? Can we -- and should we -- put our conceptualization of scholarly primitives into a historical perspective as an expression of a particular stage in the development of Digital Humanities? Have scholarly primitives been conceptually robust enough to keep up with the field, which now includes big data, visual analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence? Finally, are scholarly primitives -- and the way we speak of research as we build tools to support it -- free of ideology and bias? 

These theoretical questions frame and encapsulate the challenges of building a digital research infrastructure and developing state-of-the art tools that aid humanities scholars in their work. They make us think about whether research infrastructures are capable of supporting each stage of the research process and how we can best assess their scope and effectiveness.  They also bring into focus the question of whether the development of new tools and methods is simply changing the practicalities of conducting research, or whether it is also expanding the horizons of knowledge production in the humanities in more fundamental ways. What are the gaps and discontinuities in our understanding of scholarly primitives and, more generally, DH tools and methods that we should address in order to build comprehensive, flexible, dynamic, open and sustainable research infrastructures?

DARIAH is happy to announce John Unsworth and Kristin Veel as keynote speakers at the Annual Event 2020. 


Call for Participation

The upcoming DARIAH Annual Event combines different forms of encounter and exchange between DARIAH researchers and the wider research communities. The call for participation is divided into two streams:


  1. Pre-conference activities

    1. WG Meetings

    2. Workshops

  2. Conference activities

    1. Papers

    2. Posters/Demos

    3. Synergy Sessions


For all contributions, a title and an abstract (max. 500 words) are to be submitted via the SciencesConf system. The abstracts will be published as a book of abstracts. The extended deadline for all submissions is 12 January 2020. Please note that all submissions will be subject to review by at least two members of the Programme Committee. The Programme Committee will evaluate the quality of the proposal and reserves the right to decline proposals or assign them to a different category, if necessary. Notification of acceptance can be expected by 14 February.

Pre-conference activities


1. WG Meetings

We invite all DARIAH Working Groups to express their interest in hosting a Working Group meeting. WG chairs may focus and structure the meeting depending on their own needs and wishes. All WG meetings are offered on the programme as open to the wider public. 

Submissions should include a title, the names of the main organisers (e.g. the Working Group chairs), a brief description of the main aim of the meeting, a (preliminary) agenda, and a list of envisioned participants. Please make sure the description is detailed enough for uninformed readers who are interested in joining the session. WG meetings are allocated 2-hour slots on Tuesday 26 May. Each Working Group may apply for one WG Meeting slot only.


2. Workshops

We call for workshop proposals which address the main conference topic of scholarly primitives. The exact format of the workshops is open and depends on the nature and topic of the proposed meeting. However, in this category we aim to offer interactive activities and hands-on learning opportunities.

Submissions should include a title, the names of the organizers, a 500-abstract outlining the content and structure of the activity, a brief description of the target audience, and, if applicable, a list of speakers and/or instructors. You may apply for a half-day workshop (4-hour slot), or a full-day workshop (two 4-hour slots), but please note that the Programme Committee may suggest to shorten the workshop if needed for reasons of room capacity. The pre-conference workshops will take place on Wednesday 27 May.

Conference activities


1. Papers

In this stream, we invite researchers and research projects to present (ongoing) work that deals with the topic of scholarly primitives in the broader sense. All accepted papers will be part of thematic sessions, each chaired by a member of the Programme Committee. 

Submissions should include a title, the names of the authors and a 500-word abstract. Each paper is allowed 20 minutes on the programme, plus an additional 10 minutes for questions. The paper sessions will take place on Thursday 28 May.


2. Posters and Demos

We are looking for original posters and demos broadly related to the topic of this year’s event. These posters and demos typically include state-of-the-art project reports, work in progress, beta-versions of tools or new releases of existing tools and services. Submissions should include a title, the names of the authors and a 500-word abstract. The poster and demo session will take place on Thursday 28 May.


3. Synergy Sessions

Synergy sessions are a new format making their premiere in the Annual Event 2020. We are looking for proposals to organize dynamic, interactive sessions to discuss and explore new DARIAH activities or build upon existing DARIAH activities by shifting the focus to innovation within and beyond DARIAH. 

Let’s get our creative caps on and create spaces for experimental thinking: what are the topics that DARIAH should address in the future? What are the challenges that we need to tackle by thinking outside the box? What are the new audiences that we should concentrate on?  

Synergy sessions on any topic that falls within the broad scope of DARIAH’s mission can be proposed by at least two existing Working Groups, or by at least one Working Group and one related project and/or a group of researchers.

Submissions should include a title, the names of the main organisers, and a 500-word abstract outlining the content and structure of the session and a brief description of the target audience. Synergy sessions will be 90 minutes long and take place on Friday 29 May.

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