Humanities data can be rich and complex, non-standardised in format, without common or consistent metadata and ontologies, and can be subject to complex rights issues. Consensus and best practice regarding digitisation and metadata standards for common usage, that still retain the richness of different disciplines and data types, could enable open access to Humanities data, and facilitate data exchange and sharing between the wealth of archives, repositories and libraries across Europe.

The European Academies constitute a unique pan-European knowledge base that is trusted, non-partisan and long-term. The Academies therefore have an important contribution to make to debates regarding sustained digital infrastructures and project-funded artefacts, the achievement of long-term durable digital preservation, the societal responsibility for preservation of our digital cultural heritage, and research practices in the field of digital Humanities.

ALLEA Working Group E-Humanities

The E-Humanities Working Group is charged with identifying and raising awareness for priorities and concerns of the Digital Humanities, and contributing to the Open Science and Open Access agenda from a Humanities and Social Sciences perspective, and building consensus for common standards and best practices in E-Humanities scholarship and digitisation. The Group’s first publication, Going Digital: Creating Change in the Humanities, made recommendations around archival sustainability and data training required for achieving Open Access and Open Data goals across the Humanities.

Going forward, the E-Humanities Working Group is focusing on the European Open Science and Open Research agendas, identifying growth opportunities for Humanities scholarship, as well as the contributions Humanities methodologies can make to truly opening research.

Central themes of the group include:

  • Digital best practices for the Humanities
  • Managing humanities research data
  • Open Science and FAIR data in the Humanities
  • International scientific collaboration

Members of the Working Group

  • Dr Natalie Harrower (Chair) – Royal Irish Academy
  • Dr Beat Immenhauser – Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences
  • Professor Gerhard Lauer – Chair of Digital Humanities, University of Basel (Special Member)
  • Professor Maciej Maryl – Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences
  • Professor Tito Orlandi – The National Academy of the Lincei
  • Professor Bernard Rentier –  The Royal Academies for Science and the Arts of Belgium
  • Mag. Eveline Wandl-Vogt – Austrian Academy of Sciences
  • Timea Biro (Secretariat) – Royal Irish Academy

Previous Members

  • Dr Sandra Collins (past Chair), Royal Irish Academy
  • Dr Dag Trygve Truslew Haug, Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters
  • Professor Laurent Romary (Special Member) – DARIAH
  • Professor Andreas Speer – Union of German Academies of Sciences and Humanities
  • Dr. Lisa Griffith (Secretariat) – Royal Irish Academy

Upcoming Events

Recommendations for Sustainable and FAIR Data Sharing in the Humanities


The ALLEA E-Humanities working group has written draft recommendations tailored to the Humanities to address new challenges in research data management and the adoption of FAIR principles in the wider Open Science context.

A public consultation on these Recommendations was launched on 8 May 2019 to gather broad feedback from Humanities researchers and practitioners and research performing organisations in the field.

The draft recommendations are open to all in suggestion mode here

Please note that feedback for this consultation was closed on 15 July 2019.

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