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Duke University has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities for our Summer 2018/19 Institute for Advanced Topics in Digital Humanities, HT-256969 Virtual and Augmented Reality for the Digital Humanities Institute (V/AR-DHI).

PI: VIctoria Szabo, Art, Art History & Visual Studies and Information Science + Studies
Co-PI: Philip Stern, History

First Meeting: July 23-August 3, 2018
Second Meeting: July 2019 (specific dates TBA)

V/AR-DHI consists of a two-week summer institute for up to 12 participants to take place in Summer 2018 and to be focused on the application of VR and AR to humanities research, teaching and outreach. The program is co-sponsored by the Digital Humanities Initiative at the John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute, the Wired! Lab for Digital Art History & Visual Culture, the Information Science + Studies Program, the History Department, and the Duke Immersive Virtual Environment (DiVE) in the Pratt School of Engineering. The focus is on developing virtual and augmented reality capacity among humanities researchers through a combination of critical and scientific readings and discussion, hands-on development workshops, informed critiques of existing projects, and group project implementation and reflection. It is also to intervene in the VR/AR scientific conversation from a humanistic perspective.  Throughout the workshop, participants will discuss best practices, optimal workflows, and strategies for collaboration. After the workshop the participants will communicate via a shared blog and social networking site. Workshop materials will be published online in the form of streaming videos, handouts, and exercises. In Year Two the instructional team will reconvene to finalize the formal white paper as well refine the online resources based on user feedback, participant contributions, and collective development of the field in the intervening period.

The program is designed for humanists who already demonstrate basic digital and/or computational skills in areas such as database design, image and time-based media editing, creative coding, HGIS, 3D modeling, data visualization and other areas, and who wish to expand their repertoire of available methods to include VR and AR.  The goals of the workshop are: 1) to provide opportunities for interactive digital annotation of real and virtual artifacts; 2) re-imagine archival interfaces by engaging space and time; 3) to imaginatively reconstruct and present past or hypothetical built structures within interactive environments; and 4) to articulate best practice, challenges, and opportunities these emergent forms offer to humanities scholarship. Because V/AR-DHI is the first Institute devoted to the analysis and discussion of the intellectual value of VR & AR to be conducted by digital humanities scholars, it promises making a significant impact in a variety of fields.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this Institute do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.