DH Clinics – librarians unite!

You might have heard someone from @KBNLResearch mention DH Clinics, or a colleague at the libraries of the Vrije Universiteit or Universiteit Leiden, but what are they, why do we need them and who are they for?

The DH Clinics are our attempt of spreading the DH-word amongst our Dutch colleagues. We wanted to set up a community of librarians who were involved in DH, in order to learn from each other and discuss new methods and initiatives. However, we soon learned that a lot of academic libraries in the Netherlands were still thinking about DH and how to implement it in their organisations. We’re speaking early 2015 now and luckily, a lot has happened since, but we believe a small impulse is needed to speed everything along.

And that is why we are now organising DH Clinics for Dutch academic librarians (and possibily also some archivists). The idea of the clinics is that we tackle several major themes of DH over six full-day sessions. The mornings are dedicated to lectures about the theme (think of, for example, text and data mining) and are open to a public that is interested in DH. In the afternoon, we’ll have hands-on workshops with specific applications. This part of the session is meant for people who are actually working with DH researchers, or want to do so.

We’re not setting out to re-train librarians into programmers or data crunchers, but we do want to provide them with the basics of DH with which they should increase their knowledge level to such an extent that they are able to follow the (online) discussions in the field, give tips to beginning researchers, perhaps even use some of the tools for their own work and ideally to engage with the very rich online content to learn more, such as The Programming Historian or Library Carpentry (both of which are used as inspiration for our clinics).

We’re developing the clinics with the Working Out Loud-principles, which means we will regularly share what we are doing and invite you to comment on it. Since we’re working together with the VU and UBL, this blog is not the only one you should keep an eye on, but we’ll announce everything via Twitter as well, so if you’re not already following us, now is the perfect time to start! @KBNLresearch

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