Funding for the Methods Network ended March 31st 2008. The website will be preserved in its current state.

DRHA Student Bursary Awards Conference Report

Isabel Gallina, University College, London

The Methods Network bursary was important in helping me attend DRHA 2006 at Dartington Hall. I was interested in attending the conference for three main reasons: the first was because the results of a project I had participated in would be presented; second, I knew that the talks would be useful for my PhD research; and third, because I had never been to anything of this nature before.

The conference was interesting and it was a pleasure to meet so many cross disciplinary practitioners, such as choreographers who are also engineers, art historians who are also computer scientists and so forth. The attendees were a lively mix of many different interests and backgrounds and all were exploring the same fundamental issue – that is how advanced computing may be applied in the Arts and the Humanities. Although our work tends to be multi-disciplinary, there are very few occasions at which it is possible to meet people who are engaged in similar work but with differing content, and in this sense it was a good opportunity to hear about what other people are doing.

My PhD research is concerned with shedding light on the way electronic resources are affecting scholarly communication and publishing, and the conference gave me the opportunity to observe several new aspects. I learned a great deal about new types of electronic resources that I had not previously known about. I also had the opportunity to hear about how and why they were produced. This type of documentation is rarely made available from the resource itself, although it is key for studying the objectives behind the creation of a resource. I was able to talk directly to the creators, which was a fantastic opportunity. In addition, the cross-disciplinary approach was also useful as I was able to hear the different approaches, which vary between disciplines.

I think this conference made a big contribution to my research, especially at the point I am right now, where I am defining the methodology and possible case studies. The people I spoke to and the projects that I discovered, have contributed to my overall research proposal. I am glad that I had the chance to go and I am thankful to the Methods Network for giving me the opportunity.