Thursday, October 22, 2015

The University of Iowa Libraries has launched the Digital Scholarship & Publishing Studio, a new unit serving faculty, student, and community scholars with an expert staff and access to a range of digital tools and platforms. 

A centrally funded campus resource, the Studio also houses the Studio Scholars Program, a faculty research group dedicated to the development of both large- and small-scale faculty projects related to Digital Humanities (DH) efforts in the arts and humanities.

Tom Keegan serves as director. Keegan’s teaching and research address the use of digital humanities and publicly engaged pedagogies across a variety of curricula. With Matt Gilchrist, he co-founded Iowa Digital Engagement and Learning (IDEAL), a University of Iowa student-success initiative that encourages assignment innovation to engage undergraduate students with digital scholarship practices in learning research, writing, and presentation skills.

Why use the Studio?

Given its position in the Libraries, the Studio can shepherd digital projects from their inception to their eventual archival treatments, creating responsible life spans for these projects and anticipating their place in the ever-changing future.

How to access Studio services:

To start a Studio collaboration, please contact Tom Keegan or Leah Morlan. You can also access the following:

Iowa Digital Library—the University of Iowa Libraries' collection of over one million digital objects available for research and instructional use

Iowa Research Online—the UI's institutional repository, housing electronic theses and dissertations, open access faculty work, and undergraduate scholarship

DIY History—the UI Libraries' participatory archives platform and innovative crowdsourced-transcription interface

Digital Editions—faculty and student digital projects spanning an array of disciplines and digital platforms

Judith Pascoe, professor of English in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, has been selected as the inaugural senior scholar for the Studio and overseer of the Studio Scholars program. Pascoe’s work addresses 18th- and 19th-century literature and culture. The recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, an American Council of Learned Studies Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, and a Fulbright Japan Lecturing Award, Pascoe is widely regarded for her scholarly work.

Along with Pascoe, a faculty steering committee will establish the research agenda for the Studio Scholars Program.

Studio services

The Digital Scholarship & Publishing Studio embraces scholarly creativity, encouraging interdisciplinary research and multi-platform circulation. The Studio helps scholars tailor the presentation and application of their research to a variety of audiences.

The Studio’s commitment to the university community holds four intertwined goals:

  • Research—Foster interdisciplinary collaborations among faculty, students, staff, and citizens, using established and emerging digital tools to create and share knowledge.
  • Instruction—Help UI instructors thread their research into university and community curricula.
  • Training—Provide workshops for faculty and students in new digital tools and platforms.
  • Publishing—Increase internal and external access to the knowledge created through UI research.


The Digital Scholarship & Publishing Studio offers a collaborative staff of 12 who contribute specialized expertise to Studio projects. UI faculty and students working with the Studio can tap a range of skills that would be difficult to access otherwise. Specializations include digital humanities research, GIS mapping, video creation, data visualization, 3–D modeling, art and design, project management, digital exhibitions, collections management, document and media preservation, web and software development, instruction, writing, and editing. 

As part of the University of Iowa Libraries, the Studio works with a variety of Libraries’ departments to ensure research data circulation, curriculum development, responsible treatment of UI research, and proper archiving.

The Studio also works in close connection with other campus resources, including Student Instructional Technology Assistants (SITAs) and Iowa Digital Engagement and Learning (IDEAL).

Studio history—a strengthened endeavor

The Digital Scholarship & Publishing Studio combines two formerly separate departments: the Office of the Provost’s Digital Studio for Public Arts & Humanities and the University Libraries’ Digital Research & Publishing.

These two former departments were already co-located, shared certain infrastructure, and worked with many of the same faculty, often on common projects. The new Studio fully unites the resources and people—and missions—of the two departments, aligning institutional resources to position the university to become a leader in sustainable, recurring funding for digital humanities and other forms of digital scholarship.