Digital Research Commons Call for Projects

The University of Houston Libraries Digital Research Commons invites members of the UH community to submit proposals for sponsored projects to run for the remainder of the academic year 17-18. The DRC is a new physical and intellectual space within the UH Libraries committed to collaborating with researchers on projects involving digital techniques across the humanities, social sciences, and experimental sciences.

UH Libraries Digital Research Commons

UH Libraries Digital Research Commons

We are looking for teams or individuals, experts and novices alike, who have a project that they would like to pursue but don’t know quite how to get started, how best to organize their efforts, or who need tools or expertise not available elsewhere on campus. Prior knowledge of digital tools and techniques is welcome, but not a necessity. The DRC team will help you craft your proposal and, if your project is accepted, will help find training for team members who need it.

We welcome submissions from faculty, graduate students, and postdoctoral fellows. Accepted applicants will work with the DRC to build their projects into working prototypes.

Please email Claude Willan with any inquiries, or to apply, by November 3.

What to submit?

Projects may include:

  • research that uses digital tools to bring new approaches or best practices to scholarly disciplines;
  • planning and developing prototypes of new digital tools;
  • innovative uses of technology for public programming and education that incorporates both traditional and new media;
  • building rich source-based projects.

Projects should result in plans, prototypes, or proofs of concept for long-term digital research projects. In addition to early planning towards a prototype, proposals should identify a problem or research question, explore a research agenda, or discover appropriate methodologies or technologies. We especially welcome projects that draw on UH Special Collections, which involve collaboration with other area institutions, and which cross traditional disciplinary boundaries.

We will provide logistical, intellectual, and modest financial support. This can be put towards hiring student assistants or purchasing needed equipment. If you are requesting money to buy equipment, please include a list of the other UH bodies you have also applied to for this purpose.

How to submit?

A project application, emailed to Claude Willan by November 3, should include:

  1. A 1-2 sentence abstract of the proposed project.
  2. A list of your project team members and brief descriptions of roles.
  3. A budget for the AY 17-18 not to exceed $3,000.
  4. A project narrative (no more than 1,000 words). The narrative should answer the following questions:
  • What is the primary research question driving this project?
  • What is the main contribution your project will make to scholarship?
  • Who is your intended audience?
  • What do you intend to be the final product completed under this grant?

In addition, if this is a source-based project, please address:

  • What type of source materials will be used in the project (book, map, handwritten manuscript, pottery fragment, etc.) and how many of these sources do you want to include in the project?
  • Are your sources already available in digital form? Are they under copyright? Do you anticipate any challenges to making them publicly available on the web?
  • Which specific methods/tools/technologies will you use in this project? Briefly state your team’s level of comfort with these methods/tools/technologies – do any members of your team require specific training?
  • Environmental scan: cite other projects with similar capabilities that you would like to emulate, or the domain your project will improve upon.

If this is a tool-building project (includes substantive contribution to pre-existing open source software), please address:

  • What languages/frameworks/pre-existing software/etc. do you plan to use in building this tool?
  • Which members of your team have experience building software projects? Do any members of your team require specific training?
  • Environmental scan: If applicable, please cite any similar tools already in existence, and explain why they are inadequate for your research needs or intended user base.

If you are a graduate student, please include a statement about how this project aligns with your dissertation topic and research/writing schedule.

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Posted on October 18th, 2017 by Esmeralda Fisher and filed under Announcements | Comments Off on Digital Research Commons Call for Projects