Expanding Scale and Deepening Engagement in Digital Humanities: From an Overview of Hong Kong to Institution-Specific Outcomes and Future Directions

Expanding Scale and Deepening Engagement in Digital Humanities: From an Overview of Hong Kong to Institution-Specific Outcomes and Future Directions

Shun-han Rebekah Wong (Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-7195-7.ch003
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Abstract

This chapter consists of three major sections. It will start by providing an overview of the latest state of digital humanities development in Hong Kong. This first section is intended to serve as a follow-up to an earlier paper co-published by the author in 2015 that discussed the results of a questionnaire sent to the eight public universities in Hong Kong. After this discussion of the general landscape, the second section will drill down to a more institution-specific level, providing an in-depth case study of Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) Library, which is seen as a local pioneer and leader in digital humanities. This section will highlight the library's most recent initiatives and the positive responses of its university. The last section will discuss possible future directions of the HKBU Library, building on the successful partnerships developed with faculty members from diverse backgrounds, and the knowledge gained on data mining and data visualization during the course of the library's provision of digital humanities support.
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Introduction

Although the concept of digital humanities had been introduced to the Hong Kong environment only very recently, it is exciting that considerable digital humanities activities have already taken place in Hong Kong in just the past five to six years. The momentum has built up particularly in universities and academic libraries. Undergraduate programs, cross-institutional conferences, course-embedded workshops, designated spaces, and various kinds of digital projects have been developed to facilitate the growth of digital humanities.

This chapter consists of three major sections. It begins with an overview of the latest state of digital humanities development in Hong Kong. This first section is intended to serve as a follow-up to an earlier paper co-published by the author in 2015, which discussed the results of a questionnaire sent to the eight public universities in Hong Kong. After this discussion of the general landscape, the second section drills down to a more institution-specific level, providing an in-depth case study of Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) Library, which is seen as a local pioneer and leader in digital humanities. This section highlights the library’s most recent initiatives and the positive responses of its university. The last section discusses possible future directions of the HKBU Library, through the successful partnerships the library has developed with faculty members from diverse backgrounds, and the knowledge gained on data mining and data visualization during the course of the library’s provision of digital humanities support. The library also recently released a faculty and student survey on research data services. By sharing the results of this survey, readers will gain a better understanding of the library’s future directions.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Research Data Services: This term is adopted by the Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) Library with a view to differentiating its service from the more commonly known research data management services. Due to the local environment and faculty needs, HKBU Library pays more attention on providing tools and training for data mining and visualization and assisting in intellectual property issues.

University Grants Committee (UGC): UGC is the non-statutory entity that advises the Hong Kong Government on the funding and strategic development of higher education in Hong Kong. All eight public universities in Hong Kong are members of UGC.

Digital Scholarship: In Hong Kong, universities and libraries tend to use the term “Digital Scholarship” instead of “Digital Humanities” so as to convey a message to the university communities that this methodology is not limited to the humanities, but can be applied to all disciplines.

Research Data Management Services: This is a service provided by academic libraries. Service area varies according to libraries and may include (1) creation and management of institutional data repository, (2) training for researchers on data management activities, (3) support in creating data management plans and metadata, (4) guidance on institutional policies, and (5) assisting in intellectual property and privacy issues.

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