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About: Digital Humanities Innovation Lab (DHIL)

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About the Lab

The Digital Humanities Innovation Lab (DHIL) is one of the pillars of SFU’s Big Data Initiative. The DHIL will foster collaboration and interdisciplinarity across faculty and promote the development and dissemination of high-quality research that will position SFU as a world leader in digital scholarship.  

The key role of the DHIL is to assist SFU researchers with the development of digital scholarship research by providing consultation, training, mentoring, research software development and technical support to faculty and graduate students.

Located in the W.A.C. Bennett Library at SFU Burnaby and utilizing meeting space at the Vancouver and Surrey Campuses, the DHIL represents an opportunity to align research in the Digital Humanities with the Library’s expertise in digital initiatives, unique special collections, and research skill-development programming.

See Contact the DHIL for ways to reach the Lab.

Our work in the lab is guided by a collaboratively written Charter and Code of Conduct.

Lab team

Colette Colligan
Colette Colligan is a Professor of English and Co-Director of DHIL. She also leads the France Field School. She specializes in nineteenth and early twentieth-century literature, print and media culture, the history of pornographic print cultures, and digital humanities.

Rebecca Dowson is the Digital Scholarship Librarian and Library Collaborator at the DHIL. In her role, Rebecca supports researchers at all levels who are engaged with digital humanities through project consultations, digital skill development workshops, and coordinating the Library's resources in digitization and project hosting. Her research interests include the intersection of libraries and digital humanities, with a particular interest in digital cultural heritage projects, digital skill building, and new forms of scholarly publishing.

Michael Joyce enjoys writing software that talks to other software because he’s bad at talking to people and doesn’t understand apostrophes. He brings 15 years of digital humanities and web application development to the DHIL, including working as Web and Data Services Developer for the Bennett Library, a Programmer Analyst for UBC Mathematics, and a Web Developer at the Electronic Textual Culture Lab at UVic. He hates spreadsheets and loves highly structured databases.

Catherine Winters builds user interfaces and data visualizations for the DHIL. She’s worked as a web developer at Vancouver’s Centre for Digital Media, research funding agency Mitacs, and as a contractor for UBC and Emily Carr University. In her spare time, Catherine enjoys making generative text bots, procedurally-generated narratives, and designing video games.

Michelle Levy is a Professor of English and Co-Director of DHIL. Michelle specializes in Romantic literary culture, book history and digital humanities. Her research investigates the material practices that defined literary production and dissemination in the Romantic period, and she is particularly interested in the history of women’s writing and the interplay between the cultures of manuscript and print. She is project lead on the Women’s Print History Project, 1750-1836, a comprehensive digital bibliography of women’s books.

Kimberly O'Donnell
Kimberly O’Donnell is a Digital Fellow at the DHIL. She is a PhD candidate in the English Department at SFU, and her areas of research include the late-Victorian novel, affect theory, and ethics. She has also worked as a research assistant with the Lake District Online digital archive and bibliography.  

Kandice Sharren
Kandice Sharren is a Digital Fellow at DHIL. She is a PhD Candidate in the Department of English. Her research interests include Romantic-era fiction, reading practices, and celebrity culture. She is also the project manager of the Women’s Print History Project, 1750–1836.

Hannah Holtzclaw is a Technical Fellow at DHIL.  She is currently completing an MA thesis in SFU’s School of Communication. Hannah’s research incorporates feminist perspectives into the study of interface design and theory placing emphasis on the epistemological and ideological figurations of human and human agency materialized by contemporary interface design systems.

Past team members

Dogan Erisen is a Digital Fellow at the DHIL. He is an MA student in Philosophy at SFU focusing on philosophy of mind and cognitive science, in particular on the embodied nature of mental representation. Aside from his work at DHIL, he is also very enthusiastic about the use of digital tools for bringing philosophy to a wider audience.  

Deanna Fong (Digital Fellow at DHIL) She is a PhD candidate in English at SFU, where her research focuses on the intersections of auditory media, event theory, literary communities, and affective labour. She is a member of the federally funded SpokenWeb team, who have developed a web-based archive of digitized audio recordings for literary study, and is currently developing digital interfaces for the audio/multimedia archives of Canadian poets Fred Wah and Roy Kiyooka.

Erik Hanson is a Digital Fellow at the DHIL. He is a graduate of the Master of Publishing program at Simon Fraser University's Publishing Program. Aside from his work with the DHIL, he is also involved with projects exploring topics such as open access, social media, and research utilization.

Abdul Zahir (Research Assistant) An MA candidate in SFU's Department of English, Abdul's work focuses on 19th-century American literature, and the print culture in which that literature was ensconced.