DHQ: Digital Humanities Quarterly
2019
Volume 13 Number 2
2019 13.2  |  XML |  Discuss ( Comments )

Raising Visibility in the Digital Humanities Landscape: Academic Engagement and the Question of the Library’s Role

Abstract

Academic libraries have an important role to play in supporting digital humanities projects in their communities. Librarians at Stony Brook University Libraries host Open Mic events for digital humanities researchers, teachers, and students on campus.  Inspired by a desire to better serve digital humanists with existing projects, this event was initially organized to increase the visibility of scholars and students with nascent projects and connect these digital humanists to library supported resources and to one another. For the Libraries, the Open Mic was an opportunity to understand the scope and practices of the digital humanities community at Stony Brook, and to identify ways to make meaningful interventions.   An open mic is a uniquely suitable event format in that it embodies a dynamic, permissive, multidisciplinary presentation space that is as much for exercising new and ongoing research (and technologies) as it is for making discoveries and connections.  The success of these events can be measured in the establishment of the University Libraries as a nexus for digital humanities work, consultations, instruction, workshops, and community on a campus without a designated digital humanities center.   The digital humanities Open Mic event at Stony Brook University locates the digital humanities within the library’s repertoire, while signaling that the library is — in a number of essential ways — open.

Introduction

The digital humanities are problematic to place. In his explanation of the visionary aspects of the digital humanities, Patrik Svensson[Svensson 2012] suggests that the interdisciplinarity of the discipline disrupts traditional academic structures. Supporting digital humanities efforts requires an organizational and budgetary structure that universities, siloed into academic departments, are not equipped to support. The academic library, however, transcends some of these traditional boundaries and can be a setting for digital humanities encounters. The unique position of the library as a cross-disciplinary resource can provide space and structure for interdisciplinary connection. The library is the right place to develop digital humanities programing because it has the capacity for multi-view support of projects from their early stages and can facilitate interdisciplinary collaboration.
With flexible spaces, information resources, and systems for discovering, curating, and preserving information, the library deliberately weaves expertise throughout departments and disciplines. Programs, such as lecture series, workshops, and more informal events, are an important strategy to make visible the library’s potential as an intellectual, pedagogical, and practical center for digital humanities work on campus. Programming raises the library’s profile while also highlighting the problems it faces as a campus entity engaged in the digital humanities, as well as potential strategies to counter them. One key issue is the lack of spaces on campus, both physical and intellectual, for more casual interdisciplinary engagement at the early stage of research or teaching projects in the digital humanities. This lacuna underscores the need to communicate the library’s potential to campus stakeholders, as well as to present it to them in a legible way capable of inspiring collaboration. Librarians at Stony Brook University have taken steps, through instruction, programming, and collaboration, to raise the profile of the library as a nexus of digital humanities activity. This has afforded the library the opportunity to question the role of librarians in digital humanities research, as well as the ways in which digital humanities research enters into dialogue with the interdisciplinarity and modularity of the academic library. As a result of the increased visibility of the library to the digital humanities community at Stony Brook University, librarians formed a working group to combine their talents and expertise in order to provide a menu of services and support which transcends the expertise of any individual member of the group. The synergy and collaborative energy of this group enables librarians to demonstrate their ability to play a broader, more visible role in digital humanities research and to function as leaders in this dynamic field.
This programmatic, multifaceted commitment to creating a digital humanities presence in the library draws its energy, focus, and scholarly network through formal and informal programming. Informal events based around networking and sharing unfinished work in particular are a uniquely suitable format in that they embody a dynamic, permissive, multidisciplinary presentation space that is as meaningful for exercising new and ongoing research (and technologies) as it is for making discoveries and connections. These events, at which faculty and students are invited to give lightning talks about ongoing research, or simply to listen and learn, provided a foundation on which to build the library’s digital humanities program. The openness, inclusivity, and visibility of these events complement and enhance the library’s digital humanities consultation and instruction services, putting librarians in touch with faculty and students in need of support. Additionally, programming and outreach contribute to the visible of the library while simultaneously privileging its interdisciplinarity and the flexibility of its services, spaces, and collections as they are tailored to digital humanities research and teaching.
This article discusses the programming, consultations, instruction sessions, workshops, and working group within the context of collaborative and interdisciplinary work in the digital humanities. In addition to providing an outreach template for academic librarians seeking a resource-light introduction to digital humanities projects and researchers on their campuses, this discussion draws into relief the ways in which the digital humanities challenges and reconditions the role and visibility of the librarian as consultant and collaborator. This forms part of a discourse on the nature of collaboration in the digital humanities and on the library as an interdisciplinary space capable of facilitating and engaging in multimodal research and practice. The digital humanities content at Stony Brook University locates the digital humanities within the library’s repertoire, while signaling that the library is — in a number of essential ways — open.

Library Services and the Digital Humanities

The digital humanities programming and services at Stony Brook University Libraries provide an opportunity to discuss and problematize the ways in which programming and outreach can help libraries to understand the needs of their digital humanities constituencies. The professional literature is replete with examples of the complex relationship between libraries and digital humanists, as well as the exciting, yet frightening, possibilities of tailoring this dynamic to fit the needs of an individual campus. As academic libraries engage with the digital humanities on their campuses, they are faced with a decision about the degree of involvement they have the capacity to provide. Some librarians are consultants, offering advice to researchers regarding data curation, digital preservation, and GIS or text-mining technologies. Other librarians position themselves as active practioners and partners in the research process, becoming engaged in digital humanities projects on grant applications and as co-authors. Beyond this dichotomy exist other considerations which must be addressed by libraries, including building collections that are mindful of the needs of digital humanists. This can include data visualization and GIS software, or advocating for text-mining rights in digital collections.
After decades of development, experimentation, and growth, many digital humanists point to the value of considering the digital humanities not as an umbrella, but as a rich, diverse, and sometimes unrelated gathering of research practices which bring the humanities into contact with the empirical [Kirschenbaum 2012]. This approach tends to destabilize the notion of a monolithic digital humanities in favor of a discussion of individualized research practices and tools intended to promote contact with cultural objects, interdisciplinary, collaboration, and new interpretations of existing corpora. The academic library is ideally situated at the crossroads of these concepts, and has an important intellectual and practical role to play in the continued development of the digital humanities. Kirschenbaum’s foundational essay considers the digital humanities primarily from the perspective of English departments, though his observations regarding the nature of work in the digital humanities are extremely applicable to the interdisciplinary, flexible academic library. Indeed, other chapters in the same edited volume, Debates in the Digital Humanities, as well as the contributions in the 2016 edition, underscore similar points by emphasizing the simultaneously problematic and opportunity-rich dynamic between digital humanists, the humanities, and libraries.
In many ways, the flexibility of the library, its visibility on campus, and the intersectionality of its mission and philosophy render it both neutral and uniquely suitable for early-stage thought. This is reinforced by the library’s frequently consultative and pedagogical role in supporting the digital humanities on campus. Librarians have been extending the invitation to their liaison departments and collaborating with faculty members in their disciplines to produce and support digital humanities projects. This ongoing conversation between librarians, non-library faculty members, and students is reflected in the openness, creativity, and collaboration inherent in library spaces for the digital humanities. That these outreach strategies are successful — even for those who do not attend — is evidenced by the increased visibility of the library in the digital humanities community on campus, as well as the increase in requests for instruction, collaboration, and consultations.
In order to facilitate extended collaboration, Stony Brook University Librarians offer workshops on topics, tools, and practices of use to scholars working in the digital humanities, placed in context by the needs that we observe when working with researchers during and after programs. Examples include a workshop for digital humanists who are interested in incorporating text mining as a research tool, but who may lack the technical background to create their own programs. Using a freely accessible text mining tool, Stony Brook University librarians helped to demystify an important digital humanities practice and to encourage humanists to use it to support their research. Workshops dedicated to other visualization tools, have been popular with students and researchers interested in learning to visualize their data in creative and impactful ways. These two examples illustrate a commitment to providing in-depth, tailored instruction on using digital humanities tools. However, they are also indicative of the ways in which digital humanities work is changing the role of the librarian in research. Workshops offer a platform for librarians to demonstrate their expertise and to share it with a broader audience. Because these events are publicized to the campus community, they also contribute to the libraries’ growing reputation for and visibility as a digital humanities space. Librarians plan workshop content by expanding their own technical and research skills, with the end result that digital humanities workshops carry the dual benefit of improving library services in the digital humanities while simultaneously enhancing awareness on campus of the library as a resource and as a leader in this area. Evidence of these phenomena can be observed in the feedback loop which exists between the advertisement of workshops, workshop attendance or non-attendance, and subsequent requests for individual consultations with librarians.
Librarians also teach course-embedded workshops on creating digital humanities content. It is important to note that requests for these sessions are typically inspired by instructor participation in, or awareness of, another digital humanities event at the library, such as an Open Mic or a workshop. By participating in undergraduate- and graduate- level instruction in topics such as multimodal storytelling, digital humanities tools, open textual corpora, and the role of the library, librarians elucidate the work that they are already doing to support this broad and varied field. Additionally, instruction sessions offer the benefit of introducing the library and librarians to students who are already interested in learning more about the field. This classroom connection has inspired requests for research consultations and further support.
An unforeseen benefit of librarian participation in digital humanities courses, particularly in those at the graduate level, has been the increased visibility of the ways in which digital humanities as a mode of inquiry can enhance or inflect the careers of early career scholars working in humanities fields. The opportunity to become involved in graduate research in the digital humanities is also a chance to demystify librarianship, particularly technically-inflected librarianship, to a group of students who may be interested in pursuing a career outside of the professoriate as it is traditionally conceived.
Taken together, the strategies used to keep in touch with the digital humanities community at Stony Brook University, in addition and subsequent to the start of the Open Mic events series, render visible key questions in the role of librarians in the digital humanities.

Cultivating Visibility through Programming

In order to gain the information necessary to identify and decide how to brand their role in emerging research, librarians need to build strong relationships with researchers, teachers, and students on their campuses. This is particularly important in a digital humanities context because of the inherent interdisciplinarity of the field, as well as the variety of practices which can, are, or could be identified as digital humanities.
To plan and promote the digital humanities in the library, librarians at Stony Brook University drew on examples from the literature. Though there is no direct parallel, many universities have successfully engaged their communities in open digital humanities activities aimed at creating communities of practice in library spaces. In 2015, Arianne Hartsell-Gundy, Laura Braunstein, and Liorah Golomb edited a volume entitled, Digital Humanities in the Library: Challenges and Opportunities for Subject Specialists. In many ways, the contributed essays in this book reflect the inherent overlaps, tensions, and opportunities in the relationship between the digital humanities and the library. Importantly, they also place this dynamic within the context of the broader role of the liaison librarian, with its emphasis on forming close relationships with academic departments in order to provide tailored service. This concept is particularly important in the context of the digital humanities because it is a field which challenges the liaison relationship to expand toward collaboration. Other studies treat this theme from a perspective which emphasizes the nature of collaboration itself. Developing informal communities was one of the themes identified by Hannah Rasmussen, Brian Croxall, and Jessica Otis in their interviews with librarians engaged in digital humanities work. They argue that these context-specific, informal communities of practice are a good fit for the protean nature of digital humanities practice [Rasmussen 2017].
Harriett E. Green’s article in Library Quarterly [Green 2014] explores five examples of digital humanities partnerships, including a project at the University of Virginia (UVA) that began in 1992 with the creation of a dedicated space for electronic text encoding called the Etext Center. Since then, UVA has rebranded as the Scholars’ Lab and expanded the center in line with its mission of digital humanities research and development. In her article about the role of the Scholars’ Lab in UVA’s digital humanities production, Bethany Nowviskie asks whether library centers of the digital humanities are uniquely able to “demonstrate many possible paths, that is, by walking them, and by sharing narratives of failure, success, and ongoing experimentation?” [Nowviskie 2013, 62]. This concept of creating a space of digital humanities connection and experimentation in the exploratory context of the library is particularly relevant to the design of the Digital Humanities Open Mic events at Stony Brook. The Open Mic event was designed to create a space in the Library where students and faculty could encounter one another and produce organic collaborations. Unlike the Scholars’ Lab, Stony Brook’s space is not dedicated full time to this purpose, but the missions are alike.
The creation of experimental and research-oriented spaces for the digital humanities is one of the core advantages of hosting these activities in the library rather than in academic departments. Chris Alen Sula [Sula 2013] found a great overlap between the work that libraries already seek to do to build collections, support scholarship, and provide development opportunities in digital settings and the work involved in producing and supporting digital humanities content. The role that librarians play in the digital humanities process differs greatly between institutions, though Miriam Posner [Posner 2013] makes the case that librarians should act as collaborators rather than supporters of digital humanities projects. She also highlights several challenges to this model including lack of institutional support, training opportunities, and incentives for librarians. SUNY Potsdam College also experienced challenges in marketing digital humanities events but found success in appealing to faculty who then promoted the event to their students [Andrews 2014]. Certainly, most institutions are not enabled to support initiatives as complex as UVA’s Scholars’ Lab, which makes initiatives with low barrier to entry particularly valuable to libraries facing these challenges.
Several other low-burden methods are outlined in the article Evolving in Common: Creating Mutually Supportive Relationships Between Libraries and the Digital Humanities including participating in the digital humanities conversation in larger online communities via Twitter, listservs, and online resources like the Digital Research Tools (DiRT) Wiki [Vandegrift 2013]. Though Stony Brook’s digital humanities events were promoted via social media, using these platforms to engage with the greater digital humanities conversation is a good future direction. Like the in-person event, digital platforms are an effective way to make connections within the University and with outside researchers working on similar projects.
Digital humanities programs and spaces are opportunities to explore and discover new boundaries to the very nature of librarian-faculty-student collaboration. By engaging outside of the classroom and off the reference desk, librarians “change the conversation” [Nalani Meulemans 2013] with faculty and students through demonstrations of their expertise and scholarship beyond the course-integrated and supporting roles they typically play.

Leveraging Librarian Skills and Identifying New Directions

Building on their existing interdisciplinarity, librarians must develop the tools and infrastructure necessary to support work in the multidisciplinary, multimodal area of the digital humanities. This goal is served by interrogating the tools and skill sets libraries and librarians need to have or cultivate in order to support the digital humanities, particularly with regard to the ways in which they can expand skills, services, spaces, and collections in order to serve a diverse community of researchers, teachers, and students.
Scholars working in the digital humanities at Stony Brook University and at many other institutions are confronted with the problem that their institutions do not have a centralized, supported center for digital humanities research and pedagogy. Though this is arguably less problematic for established practitioners, it can pose enormous challenges to students and to researchers looking to embrace new digital humanities methodologies. At Stony Brook University, individuals working with Geographical Information System (GIS) technologies are supported by the university’s Geospatial Center, which offers consultations, access to GIS tools, and graduate coursework. However, the absence of a dedicated digital humanities center means that researchers working with other modalities risk isolation and confusion. Stony Brook University Libraries, like many research libraries, has sought to remedy this lacuna by working to become a campus leader in the digital humanities and a connector of diverse practices from across disciplines. In support of this goal, the library’s Digital Humanities Working Group is a group of librarians from various sectors of the organization who have interest and/or expertise in the digital humanities:

The Digital Humanities Working Group guides library engagement in digital humanities work on campus, with an emphasis on the ways in which the University Libraries can provide leadership and vision in this dynamic area of inquiry. The Working Group plans programming, offers a framework for research consultations, and works with liaisons to engage with faculty and students on teaching, learning, and research activities in the digital humanities.  [Working Group Charge]

Working group members possess expertise in a variety of fields, such as humanities, scholarly communication, library technology, web development, and digital project creation. This interdisciplinarity contributes to the kinds of services the group is capable of providing, while also creating a crucible in which ideas about the Libraries’ role in the digital humanities are formed. By engaging members of the library faculty from diverse areas of the organization, the working group model problematizes the notion that the digital humanities must exist as only one department of an academic library. Instead, this inherently interdisciplinary, multimodal field of inquiry can be productively situated at the crossroads of a variety of areas of librarianship. This kind of flexibility also permits a reexamination of the digital humanities in the library as it places it in dialogue with key library and information concepts such as open access, information literacy, and scholarly communication. The group’s inception in the fall of 2017 marks an important step in the library’s journey as a digital humanities organization capable of providing leadership, support, and enrichment to the campus community. However, it is also in many ways the culmination of earlier efforts to build relationships with faculty and students working in the digital humanities, and to use the Libraries’ status as an interdisciplinary locus for scholarly communication as a platform for the creation of a network of digital humanities practitioners at Stony Brook University. This work began with a desire to understand the digital humanities as they existed on campus, as well as to explore the potential role of the library.

Engagement Strategies: Putting Theory into Practice

The liaison model which has characterized library outreach and academic engagement for the past several years has important implications for extending library work to the digital humanities. The liaison concept is predicated on the idea that librarians will work with assigned departments or programs. However, many libraries have extended this concept to a more functional model in which librarians work with researchers, teachers, and students at key points throughout their research, teaching, and learning process. These concepts include emerging library competencies such as research data management, bibliometrics, and the digital humanities [Brantley 2017] [Gibson 2010]. This presents a challenge to librarians related to both expertise and visibility, namely, the need to communicate to their constituencies the library’s potential as a resource in areas in which the library has not, traditionally, played a strong role.
Librarians at Stony Brook University and elsewhere have used diverse strategies to engage with digital humanities scholars and to build community. For two years librarians at Stony Brook University Libraries have hosted biannual Open Mic events for digital humanities researchers, teachers, and students on campus. Inspired by a desire to better serve digital humanists with existing projects, these events were designed as a platform to connect scholars and students with nascent projects to library-supported and open access resources, and to one another. For the Libraries, each Open Mic was an opportunity to understand the scope and practices of the digital humanities community at Stony Brook, and to identify ways to make meaningful interventions.
The Open Mic events were scheduled during daytime hours in the SBU Libraries Center for Scholarly Communication, a flexible, presentation technology-equipped space seating 28. The first Digital Humanities Open Mic event was held on March 5, 2016. In developing the event, the librarians organizing it began by reaching out to Stony Brook University faculty known to be interested or engaged in digital humanities activities and scholarship. The digital humanities at Stony Brook University is a community without an institutional center, so identifying likely event participants was an opportunity for the organizers to “sound the murky depths” and map the rough shape and range of the digital humanities at Stony Brook University, while discovering the individuals situated in that space by interest, practice or scholarship. There was a three-pronged call to participate or attend: Direct invitation to a selection of known digital humanities researchers; an open invitation broadcast to the myriad humanities departments and programs; and promotion, open invitation on the library website.
Five digital humanities researchers were identified and invited. Though none of them were able to attend the event they all expressed interest in attending future events. Two of them took the invitation as an opportunity to schedule meetings with the event organizers and discuss library support for their work. One discussion led to a collaboration between the researcher and the event organizers and other librarians on a grant application for funding a digital humanities project. The other discussion resulted in the development of a course-integrated library workshop for the other researcher on digital humanities resources and technologies.
The open invitation included an online sign-up form for both attendance and presentation. Three sign-ups were collected, one for attendance and two for presentation. Those two presentations combined with three presentations from librarians were the makings of an hour-long event. Though the event organizers were uncertain of who would attend besides the participants and a small number of librarians and library staff, they were confident that the open mic would bring a spotlight to digital humanities and introduce to the SBU digital humanities community the library as an active, engaged member.
Though one of the scheduled presenters was a no-show, the other presentations each went longer than 10 minutes and were further extended by discussion and questions from the audience. In the end, three presentations (see Appendix 1) were made and the event went slightly overtime. The presentations all included demonstrations of ongoing projects using different technologies and offering different features and experiences for students and researchers, and represented diverse disciplines and wide-ranging materials and content. Considering the diversity of the presentations and the different disciplines they represented, the event was an effective introduction to the complex, interdisciplinary and far-ranging qualities of digital humanities.
The impact of the first Digital Humanities Open Mic can be assessed through a few lenses, including the contacts made with the researchers who were unable to attend but nevertheless welcomed the invitation as beginning of collaborations with the library. Following the first successful open mic event, the University Libraries organized a second event to appeal to scholars who may not have been able to attend the first one, or whose work had progressed in the interim. Several researchers working in the digital humanities had contacted the event organizers, and the level of interest was sufficient to support the creation of a second open mic event. Additionally, the notion of continuity was particularly important as it emphasized the role of the Libraries as partner and consultant in the work of digital humanities at Stony Brook University. The organizers employed the same publicity strategies as for the first Open Mic, with the advantage of nascent name recognition for the event among the digital humanities community at Stony Brook University.
The second Digital Humanities Open Mic event was held at Stony Brook University on October 31, 2016. In marked contrast to the spring session, this Open Mic attracted a number of participants who were new to the digital humanities, along with a few who had active projects. One attendee brought the technical, empirical perspective of a researcher trained in data visualization methods outside of the context of the digital humanities. The diversity of this event was unforeseen because, as with the first Open Mic, participants were not universally screened or queried in advance. Prior to starting the Open Mic, the authors spoke informally with several participants and got a sense of their needs, interests, and motivations.
It became readily apparent that the participants were interested in learning more about the digital humanities through a general discussion, before turning to project presentations. Moderated by the organizers, this conversation helped to tease out the salient points of the digital humanities as a diverse group of practices, inquiries, and research priorities [Kirschenbaum 2012]. Participants asked questions and demonstrated particular interest in the ways in which digital projects and practices can inform more traditional modes of research in the humanities and social sciences. This prelude was also an opportunity to link the Open Mic to the work of other groups on campus, notably the Stony Brook University Geospatial Center, which offers training in GIS technologies.
Following the group discussion, several scholars presented projects and technologies as part of their work in digital humanities. This group combined faculty librarians and graduate students, none of whom had presented at the previous event. As had been the case the previous spring, the presentations often exceeded the 10-minute lightning talk format. However, the template of a presentation followed by discussion was altered to a more productive format, in which attendees interacted with presenters to produce a joint presentation much more conducive to feedback and enrichment. Because of the diversity of the audience, presenters received feedback from a variety of perspectives concerning new directions for their work. The informality of the open mic format permits continual re-stagings and re-interpretations of these events in ways that can be crafted to suit the needs of the digital humanities community at Stony Brook University. This was particularly true of the second open mic event, which relied less on presenter expertise and more closely followed the format of an introduction to digital humanities priorities and methodologies.
Building on the success of the first event, the second Digital Humanities Open Mic increased the visibility of the University Libraries among digital humanities researchers at Stony Brook University. Additionally, the second event attracted much greater attendance from library faculty and staff, many of whom were encountering the digital humanities as beginners. Though originally conceived of as an outreach tool for non-library faculty, staff, and students, the Open Mic events yielded the added benefit of raising the profile of the digital humanities within the Stony Brook University Libraries as well.
Informed by the experience of prior Digital Humanities Open Mic events at Stony Brook University, the organizers elected to construct the third event in our series following the same model as the first two. Rather than attempt to impose a stricter format, we prefer to encourage open mic attendees and participants to guide us in producing the event which is most useful to them. By understanding that our researchers, teachers, and students work along a broad spectrum of experience and comfort level with regard to the digital humanities, we equip ourselves to better support them as they expand their research in this field.
The third Open Mic event was held on November 13, 2017. As with the previous events, the third Open Mic was deliberately casual in order to foster discussion and relaxed participation. Attendance was lower than the first two events, however, the presence of an undergraduate was a welcomed development, and an indication that interest in and curiosity about digital humanities is coalescing around the Open Mic events. There was a stimulating balance of presentation and engaged discussion that in some ways delivered on our original expectations when developing the Open Mic events.
Each Open Mic event has had its own distinct character, shaped in part by the style, subject and content of the presentations, and perhaps even more by the participation, questions and interests of the audience. The ultimate success of each of these events can be measured in the subsequent requests for consultation and instruction which demonstrate the fact that the Open Mic events raised the visibility of the Libraries as a source of digital humanities expertise on campus, and that they helped to condition the kinds of services and programs offered to meet and expand current needs.

Conclusion

Why is the library uniquely situated to offer these services? The interdisciplinarity of the library and the flexibility of its services, spaces, and collections conditions its responsiveness to the needs of diverse stakeholders within the digital humanities community. The library’s role in teaching information literacy through instruction sessions, workshops, and consultations dovetails with the need to communicate digital humanities practices to students learning to incorporate them into their research process. The library is uniquely suited to do this because it exists outside of the student’s department in a way which allows it to support research and scholarly inquiry removed from the constraints of disciplinary convention. Likewise, the library’s flexibility regarding the communication of information — seen in research guides, tutorials, videos, and more traditional forms of scholarship — positions it well to work with students who are interested in disseminating their scholarship through the multimodal methods offered by and through digital humanities practices. Finally, by engaging students working in the digital humanities, the library has an opportunity to serve its mission of contributing to students’ intellectual and professional development in a way which is consistent with its broader goal of promoting critical engagement with information.
Researchers benefit from the library’s digital humanities services and support through access to collections curated in order to facilitate technological engagement, as well as equipment and consultations intended to assist in the integration of digital humanities practices into their scholarship and pedagogy. This is an important opportunity for the library to engage with digital teaching practices. Additionally, the library’s increasing participation in all aspects of the research lifecycle positions it perfectly to help scholars to blend their digital humanities work with their broader research project. Finally, the library’s programming mission provides a forum for researchers to share their work with an interdisciplinary community outside of departmental boundaries.
The creation of a robust menu of services, responsive collections, and flexible spaces in support of the digital humanities is enriching for both the library and librarians. The digital humanities provides an opportunity to conceptualize library collections in innovative ways and to tailor library instruction and consultations to this multifaceted field. As a component of librarian professional development, digital humanities work encompasses several key competencies, including digital practices and tools, collection strategy, project management, academic engagement, and event planning. The diversity of librarians’ training, academic backgrounds, and professional interests pair well with the acquisition of digital humanities expertise, enriching the practice of a fundamentally interdisciplinary, intersectional, and multimodal field of scholarly inquiry. Resource-light, iterative programming, such as the Open Mic events, allow the library to identify digital humanities practitioners and to create a community of shared interest capable of serving the needs of students, faculty, and librarians.

Appendix 1

Kasten, Kathleen; Chase, Darren; Costello, Laura; Haugh, Dana. Digital Humanities at Stony Brook University. Library Subject & Research Guides, Stony Brook University Libraries. http://guides.library.stonybrook.edu/dh.

Open Mic 1 Presentations

Chase, Darren. “Hello from the Children of Planet Earth: The Voyager Interstellar Mission Golden Record.” Digital Humanities Open Mic, 5 March 2016. Center for Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University. http://scalar.usc.edu/works/hello-from-the-children-of-planet-earth/index.
Haugh, Dana. “The John Milton Digital Library.” Digital Humanities Open Mic, 5 March 2016. Center for Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University. http://thechosenseed.weebly.com/.
Melgosa, Adrian and Sung-Gheel Jang, Natalia Chamorro, Jose Chueca. “Latino Long Island: A Cultural and Social Map.” Digital Humanities Open Mic, 5 March 2016. Center for Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University. http://stonybrook.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=eed98716c97c4aa2b18fea18bc571273.

Open Mic 2 Presentations

Datema, Jay. “Markdown for Interoperability.” Digital Humanities Open Mic, 31 October 2016. Center for Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University.
Kasten, Kathleen. “Voyant Tools.” Digital Humanities Open Mic, 31 October 2016. Center for Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University.
Zukowski, Scott. “Setauket’s Christian Avenue Neighborhood (1873-1947).” Digital Humanities Open Mic, 31 October 2016. Center for Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University. https://stonybrook.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=bd1407516a43483e97c854eea5319c3f.

Open Mic 3 Presentations

Chase, Darren.“Introduction to Six Degrees of Francis Bacon.” Digital Humanities Open Mic, 13 November 2017. Center for Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University. http://www.sixdegreesoffrancisbacon.com/.
Teplitsky, Joshua. “Footprints: Jewish Books Through Time and Place.” Digital Humanities Open Mic, 13 November 2017. Center for Scholarly Communication, Stony Brook University. https://footprints.ccnmtl.columbia.edu/.

Works Cited

Andrews 2014 Andrews, E. “‘Ignore Them and They Will Come’: Attracting Students to Academic Library Events,” Public Services Quarterly 10.2 (2014): 150-56. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15228959.2014.904211.
Brantley 2017 Brantley, S., Bruns, T. A., and Duffin, K. I. “Librarians in Transition: Scholarly Communication Support as a Developing Core Competency.” Journal of Electronic Resources Librarianship 29.3 (2017): 137-150. DOI: 10.1080/1941126X.2017.1340718.
Gibson 2010 Gibson, C. and Coniglio, J. W. “The New Liaison Librarian: Competencies for the 21st Century Academic Library.” In S. Walter and K. Williams (eds), The Expert Library: Staffing, Sustaining, and Advancing the Academic Library in the 21st Century. Association of College and Research Libraries, Chicago (2010), pp. 93-126.
Gold 2012 Gold, M. K. (ed). Debates in the Digital Humanities. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis (2012).
Gold 2016 Gold, M. K. and Klein, L. F. (eds). Debates in the Digital Humanities. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis (2016).
Green 2014 Green, H. E. “Facilitating Communities of Practice in Digital Humanities: Librarian Collaborations for Research and Training in Text Encoding,” Library Quarterly, 84.2 (2014): 219-234. https://doi.org/10.1086/675332.
Grundy 2015 Gundy, A. H., Braunstein, L, and Golomb, L. (eds). Digital Humanities in the Library: Challenges and Opportunities for Subject Specialists. The Association of College and Research Libraries (2015).
Kirschenbaum 2012  Kirschenbaum, M. (2012). “What is Digital Humanities and What’s It Doing in English Departments?” In M. K. Gold (ed), Debates in the Digital Humanities. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press (2012), pp. 3-11.
Nalani Meulemans 2013 Nalani Meulemans, Y., and Carr, A. “Not at Your Service: Building Genuine Faculty-librarian Partnerships,” Reference Services Review 41.1 (2013): 80-90.
Nowviskie 2013 Nowviskie, B. “Skunks in the Library: A Path to Production for Scholarly R&D,”Journal of Library Administration 53.1 (2013): 53-66. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01930826.2013.756698.
Posner 2013 Posner, M. “No Half Measures: Overcoming Common Challenges to Doing Digital Humanities in the Library,” Journal of Library Administration 53.1 (2013): 43-52. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01930826.2013.756694.
Rasmussen 2017 Rasmussen, H., Croxall, B., and Otis, J. “Exploring How and Why Digital Humanities Is Taught in Libraries.” In J. Reeves Eyre, J. C. Maclachlan, and C. Williford (eds), A Splendid Torch: Learning and Teaching in Today’s Academic Libraries. Council on Library and Information Resources (2017), pp. 69-88. Retrieved from https://www.clir.org/pubs/reports/pub174.
Sula 2013 Sula, C. A. “Digital Humanities and Libraries: A Conceptual Model,” Journal of Library Administration 53.1 (2013): 10-26. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01930826.2013.756680.
Svensson 2012 Svensson, P. (2012). “Envisioning the Digital Humanities.” Digital Humanities Quarterly 6.1 (2012). http://www.digitalhumanities.org/dhq/vol/6/1/000112/000112.html
Vandegrift 2013 Vandegrift, M., and Varner, S. “Evolving in Common: Creating Mutually Supportive Relationships between Libraries and the Digital Humanities,” Journal of Library Administration 53.1 (2013): 67-78. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01930826.2013.756699.
Working Group Charge “Working Groups” Stony Brook University Libraries http://library.stonybrook.edu/about-us/library-working-groups/.