International audience; Since the end of the 1980s the historiographical context has changed considerably. Over the course of the last ten years, we have reached the “digital age” and computers as well as resources available via the Internet have become indispensable tools for all researchers. Be it for the stage of documentation or for actual writing, we are now living and working in a context where historians can no longer completely refuse all IT tools. As long as there are no solid, durable, large-scale training efforts to equip all historians with the skills to use the new and old IT tools, their potential is necessarily limited. While there have been studies on “researchers” in general and also on political scientists in particular, there has, to our knowledge, been no scientific study which would allow us to reach conclusions on the use of IT tools and digital resources by French historians. It is thus difficult to reach conclusions on a larger scale and we have decided to base our analysis on our own experience in order to consider what could be the transformations of the historian’s craft in the digital age. We will thus proceed first to a series of conclusions based on our activities in mediation (teaching and blogging), before proposing a typology of the principal evolutions. We will conclude with a certain number of propositions as far as training of historians is concerned.; Dalla fine degli anni ’80, il contesto storiografico è mutato in maniera considerevole. Nel corso degli ultimi dieci anni, siamo entrati nell’“era digitale” e i computer – così come le risorse disponibili attraverso la rete Internet – sono diventati strumenti indispensabili per tutti i ricercatori. Sia per la fase di raccolta della documentazione sia per la stesura vera e propria dei resoconti, viviamo e lavoriamo oramai in un contesto in cui gli storici non possono più permettersi di rinunciare completamente a tutte le risorse informatiche; ma fino a quando non saranno profusi sforzi di formazione robusti, durevoli e ad ampio raggio per dotare tutti gli storici delle abilità necessarie ad utilizzare gli strumenti informatici vecchi e nuovi, il loro potenziale sarà necessariamente limitato. Mentre sono apparsi studi su alcuni “ricercatori” in generale e anche su scienziati politici in particolare, non esistono – a nostra conoscenza – contributi di livello scientifico che ci permettano di trarre conclusioni sull’utilizzo degli strumenti informatici e delle risorse digitali da parte degli storici francesi: così, di fronte alla difficoltà di giungere a definizioni su larga scala, abbiamo deciso di basare la presente analisi sulla nostra personale esperienza, in maniera tale da prendere in esame quali trasformazioni potrebbero intervenire nel mestiere dello storico dell’era digitale. Procederemo quindi, in prima istanza, con una serie di valutazioni fondate sulle nostre attività di mediazione (insegnamento e pratica come bloggers), prima di proporre una definizione delle principali evoluzioni; concluderemo poi con un certo numero di considerazioni a proposito di quanto la formazione dello storico sia coinvolta in questo processo.
Succeed awards 2014 Nomination; The BVH project have been rewarded with the Succeed award 2014. This prize recognizes the successful implementation of a digitisation programme, especially those exploiting the latest technology and the output of research for the digitisation of historical text.The BVH (Bibliothèques Virtuelles Humanistes: Virtual Humanistic Libraries) is a research program devoted to the digitization and electronic publication of original source documents from the Renaissance period. Since 2003, its website has published digital facsimiles, selected Early Modern imprints (1450-1650) mainly from regional collections, and transcriptions of French texts of the same period, encoded according to the XML-TEI standard. Particular attention is paid to achieving great accuracy in the bibliographical description as regards the true states of originals and the closest correspondence between two distinct corpora, facsimile and text, linked by several levels of metadata in the main catalogue. The BVH team works in close collaboration with researchers from the Computer Science Laboratory of Tours (LI-Tours) to develop new technologies in the fields of image processing and pattern recognition. Open source software for layout analysis and text transcriptions, AGORA and RETRO, enables us to perform automatic extraction of graphic components from digitized books, and thus to build up specialized databases of iconographic and typographical material. As a member of the TEI consortium, we actively contribute to the development of a specialised schema for the transcription of Renaissance documents. Each step of processing and every component developed at the BVH is also intended for use by the whole digital community, creating a model for the digital library of the future.; Les Bibliothèques Virtuelles Humanistes (BVH) se sont vues décernées le prix Succeed 2014, soutenu par l’Union Européenne, qui récompense « la mise en œuvre réussie d’un programme de numérisation exploitant les nouvelles technologies et les travaux de recherche en matière de numérisation des documents historiques ».Le programme de recherche BVH numérise des documents patrimoniaux et publie des éditions électroniques de documents de la Renaissance. Depuis 2003, les BVH publient sur leur site internet une sélection de Fac-similés numériques - imprimés du début des temps modernes (1450-1650), principalement issus de fonds régionaux - et des éditions de textes français de la même période, encodés en XML selon les recommandations de la Text Encoding Initiative (TEI). Une attention particulière est portée à la description bibliographique respectant l'état original des sources et à la conservation de la correspondance entre les deux corpus distincts, fac-similés et textes, liés par leurs métadonnées communes. L'équipe BVH travaille en étroite collaboration avec l'équipe de recherche sur la Reconnaissance des Formes et Analyse d'Images du Laboratoire d'Informatique de Tours (LI Tours, équipe RFAI) pour le développement de nouveaux outils. Agora et Retro, logiciels open source, nous permettent d'extraire automatiquement les éléments (caractères et illustrations) des livres numérisés et ainsi, de constituer des bases de données spécialisées iconographiques et de matériel d'imprimerie. Membre du Consortium TEI, les BVH contribuent activement au développement d'un schéma pour l'édition de documents de la Renaissance. Les méthodologies et outils développés dans le cadre de ces recherches sont mises à la disposition de tous.
Publication . Part of book or chapter of book . 2017
International audience; Humanities have convincingly argued that they need transnational research opportunities and through the digital transformation of their disciplines also have the means to proceed with it on an up to now unknown scale. The digital transformation of research and its resources means that many of the artifacts, documents, materials, etc. that interest humanities research can now be combined in new and innovative ways. Due to the digital transformations, (big) data and information have become central to the study of culture and society. Humanities research infrastructures manage, organise and distribute this kind of information and many more data objects as they becomes relevant for social and cultural research.
International audience; The german biography portal “Deutsche Biographie” is a joint effort of the Historical Commission at the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities and the Bavarian State Library and supported by cultural heritage institutions to develop a historical and biographical information system for the German-speaking world. It includes digital full texts of more than 48.000 articles about persons and families of two biographical dictionaries and indices from associated institutions. We will describe our objectives in adopting state-of-the-art methods in Digital Humanities (DH): metadata modeling, text-encoding, identifying individuals and places in authority files and aggregating further biographical information from freely available, persistent, scientific and source-based websites and databases. The portal offers an entry point for historical biographical research by providing programmable web services to foster current approaches in DH like linked open data/semantic web, historical network research. computational linguistics. The potential of it lies in its coordinated biographical data management and integration. The common database is gradually enlarged in a collaborative and modular manner together with partners in Germany and Europe. We will discuss on how the collection information can be curated in order to serve and facilitate future research trends.
This article tackles the issue of integrating heterogeneous archival sources in one single data repository, namely the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure (EHRI) portal, whose aim is to support Holocaust research by providing online access to information about dispersed sources relating to the Holocaust (http://portal.ehri-project.eu). In this case, the problem at hand is to combine data coming from a network of archives in order to create an interoperable data space which can be used to search for, retrieve and disseminate content in the context of archival-based research. The scholarly purpose has specific consequences on our task. It assumes that the information made available to the researcher is as close as possible to the originating source in order to guarantee that the ensuing analysis can be deemed reliable. In the EHRI network of archives, as already observed in the case of the EU Cendari project, one cannot but face heterogeneity. The EHRI portal brings together descriptions from more than 1900 institutions. Each archive comes with a whole range of idiosyncrasies corresponding to the way it has been set up and evolved over time. Cataloging practices may also differ. Even the degree of digitization may range from the absence of a digital catalogue to the provision of a full-fledged online catalogue with all the necessary APIs for anyone to query and extract content. There is indeed a contrast here with the global endeavour at the international level to develop and promote standards for the description of archival content as a whole. Nonetheless, in a project like EHRI, standards should play a central role. They are necessary for many tasks related to the integration and exploitation of the aggregated content, namely: ● Being able to compare the content of the various sources, thus being able to develop quality-checking processes; ● Defining of an integrated repository infrastructure where the content of the various archival sources can be reliably hosted; ● Querying and re-using content in a seamless way; ● Deploying tools that have been developed independently of the specificities of the information sources, for instance in order to visualise or mine the resulting pool of information. The central aspect of the work described in this paper is the assessment of the role of the EAD (Encoded Archival Description) standard as the basis for achieving the tasks described above. We have worked out how we could develop a real strategy of defining specific customization of EAD that could be used at various stages of the process of integrating heterogeneous sources. While doing so, we have developed a methodology based on a specification and customization method inspired from the extensive experience of the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) community. In the TEI framework, as we show in section 1, one has the possibility to model specific subsets or extensions of the TEI guidelines while maintaining both the technical (XML schemas) and editorial (documentation) content within a single framework. This work has led us quite far in anticipating that the method we have developed may be of a wider interest within similar environments, but also, as we believe, for the future maintenance of the EAD standard. Finally this work, successfully tested and implemented in the framework of EHRI [Riondet 2017], can be seen as part of the wider endeavour of European research infrastructures in the humanities such as CLARIN and DARIAH to provide support for researchers to integrate the use of standards in their scholarly practices. This is the reason why the general workflow studied here has been introduced as a use case in the umbrella infrastructure project PARTHENOS which aims, among other things, at disseminating information and resources about methodological and technical standards in the humanities.