2017 GO::DH Executive Board Candidates

Global Outlook::Digital Humanities is holding its fourth Executive Committee elections. According to the approved bylaws that establish procedures by which GO::DH is governed, four out of eight of the seats on the executive committee are up for election this year. Each executive serves a two year (renewable) term. The election will be open for members to vote from March 27, 2017 to April 3rd, 2017.

Candidate Bios and Statements

1) Amy Earhart

Candidate Bio: I am an Associate Professor of English at Texas A&M University and have been involved with digital humanities since 2003. My work has focused on building infrastructure for digital humanities work, embedding digital humanities projects within the classroom, and tracing the history and futures of dh, with a particular interest in the way that dh and critical race studies intersect.  I have been particularly concerned with representing a diverse history of digital humanities, as is the case with my projects The Millican “Riot,” 1868 and “Alex Haley’s Malcolm X: ‘The Malcolm X I knew’ and notecards from The Autobiography of Malcolm X” (a collaborative project with undergraduate and graduate students published in Scholarly Editing). I have published scholarship on a variety of digital humanities topics, with work that includes my monograph Traces of Old, Uses of the New: The Emergence of Digital Literary Studies, my co-edited The American Literature Scholar in the Digital Age, and a number of articles and book chapters in volumes including  Debates in Digital Humanities. My work has focused on building collaboration and understanding of the digital humanities within the traditional humanities.

Candidate Statement: I am honored to be nominated to run for a position on the executive board of GO::DH and welcome the chance to contribute to a crucial organization in DH. As I articulated in my keynote at the 2015 CSDH/SCHN and ACH conference, I believe that we are at a crucial historical moment in which we need to examine the current state of digital humanities and have a frank and introspective conversation about what we want to achieve in the future. A priority of my service would be to continue to broaden the type of work that we imagine as digital humanities with a particular focus on the inclusion of rhetoric, pedagogy, new media, critical race studies, and gender studies. Such areas are not add ons to our current understanding of digital humanities, but central to the vibrancy of our scholarship. This also means that I believe it is important to focus on community building and broadening, continuing to develop ties with a greater geographic and linguistic community and giving all involved with the organization a voice.

2) Miguel Escobar Varela

Candidate Bio: Miguel Escobar Varela is a theatre scholar, translator and web developer who has worked in Mexico, The Netherlands, Singapore and Indonesia. He is Assistant Professor at the National University of Singapore and director of the Contemporary Wayang Archive (cwa-web.org), a digital video library of Javanese performances. His academic work on DH has appeared in Digital Scholarship in the Humanities, Digital Humanities Quarterly and several theatre journalsHe has participated in regional DH conferences in Australia, South Africa, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. He is also a technical consultant for several digital projects in Singapore and maintains digitalhumanities.sg, a site on DH in Singapore (more at miguelescobar.com).

Candidate Statement: I would be very honored to serve at the Executive Board of GO::DH since my own work is devoted to promoting collaborations among people who work in different languages, technologies and academic disciplines. I am especially committed to the development of Digital Humanities tools and initiatives in Southeast Asia but also have strong ties with DH communities in Latin America, Europe and Australia. A big part of my daily work focuses on the generation of DH tools for intercultural dialogue around Indonesian theatre. Like many cultural and intellectual traditions around the world, this is an insufficiently researched but fascinating area of scholarship that stands to gain from a more global understanding of the Digital Humanities. I would be happy to learn from colleagues working in other places and to contribute to initiatives that can further the diversity of the DH landscape.

3) Alex Gil

Candidate Bio: Alex Gil is Digital Scholarship Coordinator for the Humanities and History at Columbia University. He serves as a collaborator with faculty, students and the library leveraging advanced technology in humanities research, pedagogy and scholarly communications. Current projects include Ed, a digital platform for minimal editions of literary texts; the Open Syllabus Project; the Translation Toolkit; and, In The Same Boats, a visualization of trans-Atlantic intersections of black intellectuals in the 20th century. He is founder and former chair and vice-chair of the Global Outlook::Digital Humanities initiative; co-founder and co-director of the Group for Experimental Methods in the Humanities and the Studio@Butler at Columbia University; and, founder and editor of sx archipelagos, a journal of caribbean digital studies.

Candidate Statement: In its short life, Global Outlook::Digital Humanities has had an important role to play in the way we understand and practice digital humanities as a field spanning continents. We find ourselves, though, caught in earlier agendas meant to drive change within ADHO (Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations). We were founded as, and have been, after all, a Special Interest Group of the Alliance. We formed because we felt the Alliance was not ready to take in the world waiting at its doors—as it was (and continues to be) dominated by mostly white scholars from the north with a decidedly neutralist orientation—and we knew some of our friends around the world would benefit professionally from access to the “establishment.” We were also a place to have conversations that dealt directly with race, empire, colonialism and language in a welcoming forum. We have done good work, I believe. I also believe that we have lost our way, myself included. It is time now to retake the roads we strayed from and the ones we’ve missed: to go back to focusing on projects that pick at the thorny questions; to conduct our debates on our public mailing list (not the executive private list); to focus our energies away from ADHO; to ensure representation from each continent and a white minority on the executive; and, to simplify our governance structure to avoid political wrangling. If you want to join me in a radical new chapter of GO::DH, vote for me.

4) Merisa Martinez

Candidate Bio: As a PhD Candidate and Marie Curie Research Fellow in the DiXiT Network, my main focus in digital humanities has been on the process of collaboration with digitization professionals and scholarly editors in the library setting. I am looking at these two groups and their processes as a way of bridging the gap between LIS and textual scholarship, to benefit the dissemination of digital editions across epistemological and disciplinary boundaries. A forthcoming article also explores cultural heritage digitization at National Libraries in Scandinavia as a fractious process of identity building that obscures access to less well-known narratives of Scandinavian heritage and experiences, while simultaneously establishing hegemonic regional narratives instead.

Candidate Statement: For the past three years I have held the elected position of Student Representative to the Advisory Board for the DiXiT ITN, and this experience would serve me well on the Executive Committee. The GO:DH mission of promoting a broader view of the digital humanities outside of the Western-centric projects that have been its cornerstone in publications and conferences is a key reason I would like to join the Executive Committee. I am interested in discovering and developing ties to promote knowledge transfer between communities enthusiastic about DH, regardless of economic situation or geographic location.

5) Kristen Mapes

Candidate Bio: Kristen Mapes is the Digital Humanities Coordinator in the College of Arts and Letters at Michigan State University. She teaches and advises students in the Digital Humanities program, consults with faculty on research and teaching projects, organizes programs such as workshops, and is lead organizer of the annual Global Digital Humanities Symposium. She has graduate degrees in Library Science from Rutgers University and Medieval Studies from Fordham University. Her primary research focuses on scholarly communication and community in the digital world, specifically looking at how Medieval Studies scholars use Twitter at conferences. As a secondary research interest, she is exploring visualization and image analysis techniques to the Roman de la Rose Digital Library.

Candidate Statement: GO:DH is the space and the community where I see the crucial work of digital humanities taking place. I am invested in the long term future of GO:DH and hope to work on the Executive Board to assist in the sustainability of the organization.  In my own work at Michigan State, I am trying to embed the same ethos and values into everything that we do. I have been a primary organizer of the Global Digital Humanities Symposium, now in its second year, with the aim of creating a supportive and ethical space for exchanging ideas on key topics in DH, such as supporting and working with indigenous and underrepresented groups and environmental issues, to name a few. In my teaching, which is primarily in the “Introduction to DH” context, I am working to break with the canon to feature underrepresented narratives at the outset of undergraduate students’ interaction with digital humanities. Also, my College has taken on “Critical Diversity in a Digital Age” as a strategic goal, and I am interested in engaging deeply with the GO:DH community about what an initiative in diversity means in the context of the modern university.

6) Tunde Opeibi

Candidate Bio: Tunde Opeibi, PhD is Associate Professor (New Media & Digital Cultures) University of Lagos, Nigeria.  He has been Visiting Professor, Chemnitz University of Technology and Senior Research Fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany. He has equally been a DAAD scholar at Leipzig University, Germany, as well as Visiting Commonwealth Fellow at the Centre for Good Governance, Westminster University, London. He is the current founding chair and principal investigator at the Digital Humanities Research Unit, Faculty of Arts, and University of Lagos. He is also the country (Nigeria) representative of Clarity- an international association promoting plain legal language. His research interests are in New Media and Digital Cultures, Discourse Studies, Legal Communication,  and Sociolinguistics.

Candidate Statement: Within the last few years, digital humanities(dh) has continued to ignite exciting debates and interdisciplinary collaborations across the globe. I have personally enjoyed exploring the field and seeking to spread the knowledge and benefits of digital humanities to academic and research communities in Nigeria and Sub-Saharan Africa. With my background in scientific approaches to language study and socio-linguistics, I have a record of achievement in teaching, research and administrative responsibilities in the last nineteen years. I have equally had a brief political career as senior advisor on speech and communication to the governor of Lagos state, Nigeria. One of my greatest interests in life lies in developing human capital. Influencing lives positively and mentoring young scholars has given me the greatest pleasure and fulfillment. Within the next few years, I plan to become more actively involved in dh works  that stand at the cutting edge of multidisciplinary innovations and interdisciplinary research space. I plan to expand my international cooperation and networking with other scholars. As a recipient of some highly competitive and reputable international scholarships/fellowships such as the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Fellowship, Commonwealth Fellowship and DAAD scholarship, I believe I have achieved some level of credibility with colleagues locally and in the wider international academic community. As the founding chair and principal investigator at the pioneer digital humanities research centre in Nigeria and sub-Sahara Africa (www.dhunilag.com), I am determined to develop the field within this region and collaborate with scholars in the wider dh communities across the world.