Project Description

Archives Now: Scotland’s National Collections and the Digital Humanities


Digital technologies present many exciting new avenues for humanities research and engagement with Scotland’s national collections. As well as enabling access to archival materials through digitization, they offer an emergent set of computational methodologies for the study of cultural artefacts, narratives and histories: from text mining large corpora in order to identify patterns and trends, and mapping networks of relations between objects, people and institutions, to creating dynamic visualizations that allow new perspectives on objects and data. At the same time, they enable data and findings to be shared globally and in innovative and engaging forms, breaking down the traditional distinction between academic research and public engagement.

This project consists of a series of three workshops, which provide a forum in which to discuss these methods, the opportunities and challenges they present to those working in different sectors, and how they might be used to increase access to, knowledge of and engagement with Scotland’s collections. The workshops broadly address the topics ‘Connections,’ ‘Data,’ and ‘Engagement,’ and aims to bring together digital humanists, academics, archivists, librarians and curators from across Scotland.

As the project develops, reports and content from each workshop will be shared on this site, including event programmes, videos of invited speakers’ talks, slide presentations, and relevant resources, information, and outside links emerging from our collaborative discussions.

For additional resources on each workshop and topic, please navigate through the relevant banner heading.

This project is generously funded by the Royal Society of Edinburgh.


Participating Institutions

Participating Institutions:

The following institutions have participated in one or more project events, and many have contributed presentation and discussion materials:

Almond Valley Shale Oil Museum
British Golf Museum
The British Museum
Centre for the History of the Book (University of Edinburgh)
Digital Curation Centre (University of Edinburgh)
EDINA and Data Library (University of Edinburgh)
Edinburgh Council
Glasgow Museums
Glasgow School of Art
Humanities Advanced Technology and Information Institute (University of Glasgow)
Hunterian Gallery and University of Glasgow Collections
King’s College London
MIMAS, University of Manchester
Museum of the University of St Andrews (MUSA)
Museums and Galleries Scotland
National Galleries of Scotland
National Library of Scotland (NLS)
National Records of Scotland
North Lanarkshire Council
Perth and Kinross Council
Scottish Fisheries Museum
Scottish Football Museum
The Scottish Poetry Library
Shetland Museum and Archives
University of Aberdeen
University of Dundee
University of Edinburgh
University of Edinburgh Library and Special Collections
University of Glasgow
University of Glasgow Digital Humanities Network
University of St Andrews
University of St Andrews Library
University of Stirling
University of Strathclyde
University of Strathclyde Digital Humanities Research Group


Project Team

James Loxley – Professor of Early Modern Literature, University of Edinburgh
Lisa Otty – Lecturer in Digital Humanities, University of Edinburgh
Kerry Watson – Librarian, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
Tara Thomson – Project Assistant, University of Edinburgh


Contact Us

Contact us

If you are interested in this project, and would like more information or to join one of the workshops, please feel free to contact either Tara Thomson or Lisa Otty by email: