The programme for DH Downunder 2020 includes the following classes:

The DH Downunder event is entirely virtual this year. Most classes consist primarily of asynchronous material (tutorials, worksheets, interactive online materials, some video) that you can work through at your own pace. Links to these will be released at the start of the event.

There are also Zoom sessions for most topics, and opportunities for Q&A with the instructors through various means depending on the specific class. Note that the Zoom sessions in the schedule below are not stand-alone classes. They are opportunities for people who are working through the asynchronous materials to meet with instructors for further discussion, assistance, Q&A, and sometimes demonstrations.

All times are given in Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST: GMT+11)

Open Knowledge Toolkit
CAPOS lightning talks
CAPOS lightning talks
Positive collaboration in DH
CAPOS lightning talks
CAPOS lightning talks
Launch of TLC maps
Databases (Heurist)
Databases (Heurist)
CAPOS partner meeting
3-4pm Authorship detection2-4pm
The Gale Digital Scholar Lab
R for data wrangling and visualisation
3-4pm Authorship detection
R for data wrangling and visualisation
Social Network Analysis
Digital mapping

The programme above also includes some special events, such as the Canadian-Australian Partnership for Open Scholarship (CAPOS) annual Australian gathering, with lightning talks (open to all) and a partnership meeting (for members, by invitation). There is also a launch of the Time-Layered Cultural map project on Tuesday lunchtime.

We are always open to new ideas for classes to run for future years, so if you are interested, just get in touch.

Class descriptions

Supporting Positive Collaboration in DH Teamwork

Lynne Siemens, Ray Siemens (University of Victoria, Canada)

This offering explores core, pragmatic issues related to collaborative teamwork in the digital humanities. Following a brief example-based discussion of DH teamwork, topics covered include: being a team, and being collaboration-ready; a look at types of teams and the ways they work; an outline of supportive policies and best practices; and beyond.

Prerequisites: Just interest!

Approximate time commitment needed: 3 hours

Zoom: ‘office hours style’ Tuesday 10-11am

return to class list | return to timetable

Authorship Detection Using Stylometry

Hugh Craig and Naomi Fraser (University of Newcastle, Australia)

This introductory course will take participants through a workflow from sample text files (supplied) to authorship attribution findings. Participants will be provided with a text set of Shakespeare-era plays and instructed in using the online word-counting utility Intelligent Archive and the online R-based stylometry platform Stylo.

For simplicity we will confine ourselves to plays as samples and to word counts as features. The principles explored, however, should apply to all kinds of language samples and to other possible features such as character and word n-grams.

We will present the material in six packages, one with instructions on downloads, user registration, and uploads, and the rest with instructions for carrying out procedures. Each should take less than an hour. We will meet online at the beginning of the week to introduce ourselves and then late in the week to review findings and compare notes.

Prerequisites: none

Approximate time commitment: 6 hours

Zoom: introductory session and review session, Monday & Thurs 3-4pm

return to class list | return to timetable

R for Data Wrangling and Visualisation

Siva Kalyan (Australian National University)

Learn to organise tabular data, do text searches, and create plots and maps using R.

Prerequisites: none

Approximate time commitment: 12 hours

Zoom: introductory session and Q&A style session, Mon & Weds 4-5pm

return to class list | return to timetable

Digital Mapping for Humanities

Bill Pascoe (University of Newcastle, Australia)

Learn how to create digital maps and spatiotemporal data for Humanities. With no prior experience required, this course will cover some fundamentals of mapping theory and techniques, and provide step by step, worked examples that can be adapted to your projects. ‘Mapping’ in humanities isn’t just putting points on map so a wide range of other possibilities for humanities will be considered, various visualisations to metrical analysis. Recent tools and innovations from the TLCMap platform ( specifically intended for humanities researchers’ needs will also be introduced. This online self paced course will be followed by a video chat session for questions.

Prerequisites: familiarity with using a computer

Approximate time commitment: half a day to a day, depending on how much you want to do

Zoom: Q&A session Thursday 6-7pm (also see launch of TLC map project on Tuesday 1-1:30)

return to class list | return to timetable

An Open Knowledge Toolkit

Caroline Winter, Alyssa Arbuckle, Luis Meneses, Randa El Khatib, and Ray Siemens (University of Victoria, Canada)

This offering provides a focused and practically-oriented introduction of key open scholarship concepts, approaches to tools and data, and open knowledge in situ. It consists of online training materials associated with the Open Knowledge Practicum at the University of Victoria, Canada — themselves encapsulation of longer courses offered in conjunction with the Digital Humanities Summer Institute (

Prerequisites: Just curiosity!

Approximate time commitment: 3 hours

Zoom: Office hours style zoom, Tuesday 9-10am

return to class list | return to timetable

Is it a database, is it a website, is it an application? Make your project fly with Heurist (version 6)!

Ian Johnson (University of Sydney), Simon Burrows, Rebekah Ward (Western Sydney University)

In this workshop you will build – in a few hours, without programming – a capable online research database and (optional) data-driven website/portal, using Heurist ( University of Sydney), a sustainable, open-source web-based information system specifically developed by and for Humanities researchers since 2005. No prior experience is required.

Part 1 (1hr zoom, 2 – 3 hrs own time, online instructions, videos, instructors available via zoom) : After a short introduction to the software including examples from diverse fields you will create a database and load several data packages creating a rich array of data and capabilities (~1 hour) . You will then work through a series of easy exercises using these data to understand the potential of the software.

Part 2 (1hr zoom, 2 – 3 hrs instructors available via zoom) : With the understanding gained in part 1, you will quickly sketch a plan for a database to hold your research data, share it with the instructors for feedback, and start building your database. Using templates from part 1, you should be able to build a fully functional database and optional website within a couple of hours.

One or more of the instructors will be available to assist via zoom for each workshop session, and remain available for consultation during the rest of the conference (and via email ongoing).

Prerequisites: None

Approximate time commitment: Half a day total

Zoom: Two one-hour face to face sessions (2-3pm on Weds & Thurs). Extra zoom times can be arranged with the instructors for more support.

return to class list | return to timetable

Podcasting: Communicating Your Research, Engaging Listeners and Making an Impact

The BLab Coats (Alexander Wray, Hamid Sediqi, Marina Khan) & Roger Dawkins

Learn how to storyboard a podcast!

Podcasts are exploding in popularity, with a 70% audience growth in Australia in the last few years. There are so many fascinating podcasts – about science, true crime, sport, finance, fashion and more. They’ve become a vital way for writers to get their ideas out there, to a huge audience.

Narrative nonfiction is one of the most popular genres of podcasts, where writers use techniques from fiction to engage listeners and maintain their interest. You’ve probably heard of these examples: Science Vs, This American Life, The Teacher’s Pet and RadioLab.

In this class we’ll set you up with an easy method for crafting your research ideas into an effective narrative non-fiction podcast. You’ll gain insights into how to make your research an immersive long-form audio storytelling experience.

We’ll guide you through a blow-by-blow analysis of a classic podcast, and you’ll be inspired to develop a storyboard for your very own podcast. Learn about podcasting technique and how to affect a broader audience by sensitising yourself to the affective element of your work.

No technical expertise is required. This class is developed in collaboration with expert podcasters The BLab Coats, see Enrol now.

Prerequisites: none

Approximate time commitment: 3 hours prep work, 2 hours of class

Zoom: Two one-hour classes 6-7pm Tues & Weds

return to class list |return to timetable

Introduction to Network Analysis

Rachel Hendery (Western Sydney University)

Visualising and analysing networks is important for all kinds of applications in historical, literary, linguistic, social, and cultural research, but also beyond the humanities. Working through these materials you will learn about some key concepts from network theory, and have a go at using common tools to prepare data for visualisation as a network, display it, and do simple analyses.

We will use Gephi, a free, open-source program that runs on Windows, Mac and Linux. Please install it on your computer.

Prerequisites: need access to a computer to be able to install the required software (Gephi). Basic familiarity with spreadsheets (nothing complicated, just opening and saving files, editing and adding simple data).

Approximate time commitment: at least 4 hours to work through the basics. 8-12 hours if you want to create your own project or try the more complicated tasks.

Zoom: Q&A session where you can get help with your own project, Friday 4-6pm

return to class list | return to timetable

The Gale Digital Scholar Lab

Damien Almeida (Gale Cengage)

We will do an initial hour-long presentation on the Gale Digital Scholar Lab and then provide a password so that participants can have a 45 minute interactive/workshop session using the Lab. We will provide access to some of our archives and participants will be able follow Damian’s lead in building content sets and have a play using the tools for analysis.

Prerequisites: none

Approximate time commitment: 2 hours

Zoom: 2 hour introduction and exploratory session Tues 2-4pm

return to class list | return to timetable