After having studied Applied Economics in Belgium, I moved to Amsterdam to pursue my strong interest in Film Studies. I’ve been living in this city for three years now, and I continue to be amazed by and benefit from Amsterdam’s plethora of cinemas, theatres and music venues. The question why Amsterdam is such a creative city thus is one that definitely fascinates me, especially when the answers and implications to that question are being examined by means of newly developed research tools.
This is exactly what the CREATE project is all about: using digital data and techniques to scrutinize a city’s history in terms of its cultural industries. This research setup perfectly fits into the trending academic interest in digital humanities. Therefore, it is not only important to ensure the development of CREATE’s own research projects, but also to look at related e-humanities initiatives that are being carried out by other research institutions. Which large-scale datasets are already out there? What kind of research projects concerning the recent history of film, theatre and music are currently ongoing? And which institutions could potentially turn into future research partners?
As CREATE’s student assistant on History of Performing Arts, I will help to set up an inventory of existing databases and research projects in Europe, in order to map current developments in the research area of digital humanities. A similar goal will be undertaken by maintaining the DODH project (Dutch Overview Digital Humanities), which specifically focuses on research courses and projects in the Netherlands. By doing this, it is intended to further develop CREATE’s interdisciplinary research agenda on the data-driven history of performing arts.