Nexus Announcements

Nexus Possibility Lunch: Productive Ambiguity

Join us for the last Nexus event of the Spring 2018 Semester!

Join the Nexus Digital Research Co-op for lunch to discuss the topic of productive ambiguity in both data and scholarship. ASU Faculty Beckett Sterner and Elizabeth Lerman will lead a brief introduction to both the theory and implementation of productive ambiguity and then lead an informal discussion.

Nexus Possibility Lunch: Productive Ambiguity

Monday, April 30th, 2018


Ross-Blakely Hall, Room 197


Nexus and HSCollab collaborate to host "Possibility Lunches," a series of informal gatherings to discuss topics in digital cultures. Hosted by Jessica Rajko, Marisa Duarte, Jacque Wernimont, and Liz Grumbach, we enjoy open conversations from anti-racist, feminist, and decolonial perspectives on topics like social justice, arts and performance, the quantified self movement, cyber-security and surveillance, digital labor, social networks, and more.

Food will be provided. Please RSVP!

possibility lunch flyer with event information on it, a hand holding out for water drops
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Brown Bag Lunch (3/22): Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage, Arte Público, and US Latina/o Digital Humanities

Nexus invites you to join us for a brown bag lunch with Drs. Carolina A. Villarroel and Gabriela Baeza Ventura.

Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage, Arte Público, and US Latina/o Digital Humanities 

w/ Drs. Carolina A. Villarroel and Gabriela Baeza Ventura

Thursday, March 22nd, 2018


Ross-Blakley Hall, Room 196 (Nexus Co-op)

Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage (also known as “Recovery”) is an international program to locate, preserve, and disseminate the Hispanic culture of the United States in its written form (including texts from the colonial period to 1960).  It is housed at the University of Houston and was founded in 1991. Recovery is the premier center for research on US Latina/o documentary history. As such, we find it necessary to actively engage the digital humanities. Although there are many digital humanities research centers that are dedicated to Latin American, Caribbean, and Iberian studies, there are none that focus primarily on US Latina/o studies. With the help of grant funds from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, we have initiated our mission to create the first US Latina/o digital humanities research center. This center will serve as a venue with a postcolonial emphasis that will allow projects on the US Latina/o written legacy that has been lost, absent, repressed, or underrepresented in colonial structures of power. Our goal is to set up a place where scholars and students from throughout the United States and the rest of the world can receive support and training to access and participate in digital humanities in US Latina/o Studies. Drs. Carolina A. Villarroel and Gabriela Baeza Ventura will present on Arte Público, the Recovery Project, and US Latina/o Digital Humanities over lunch on March 22nd in the Nexus Digital Research Co-op.  

No RSVP required.

Please note: Nexus is a peanut-free environment.

If you are unable to attend, the conversation will be live-tweeted via the #usLdh hashtag.

Questions? Contact us at

logo for USLDH, which stands for U.S. Latino Digital Humanities
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Digital Scholarship Events (3/15) with Dr. Spencer Keralis

With thanks to our colleagues at ASU Libraries for organizing these events, ASU Libraries and Nexus invites you to two events on digital scholarship this Thursday, March 15th in Hayden Library.

Workshop: Integrating Digital Projects with the Humanities Survey Course
with Dr. Spencer Keralis, University of North Texas
Thursday, March 15
Hayden Library, room C41
The humanities survey course offers an opportunity for faculty and librarians to collaborate to introduce digital scholarship methods to students. In this workshop, participants will team up to work on a model assignment that integrates historical contexts with data and information literacy principles, and that requires minimal technical know-how. The end result is a fun, collaborative project that can enrich the survey course and offer librarians, faculty, and students a chance to explore hands-on digital scholarship. Lunch will be served.


Creating Community through Digital Scholarship
with Dr. Spencer Keralis, University of North Texas
Thursday, March 15
Hayden Library, room C6A
The traditional roles imagined for scholars as solitary practitioners, and for librarians as arbiters of information within the confines of their institutions, position seclusion as a virtue. In this talk, Keralis offers a particular vision for radically inclusive digital scholarship that challenges the value of solitude and favors community. He proposes that digital collaborations can break down social and institutional silos between librarians, archivists, faculty, technologists and the students we serve. Radical inclusion means respecting difference and honoring labor, and using technology to enhance accessibility. He presents examples of projects that approach digital scholarship as a form of community building. The projects bring people together within the academy and reach wider publics, and engage with diverse communities beyond the campus.
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Douglass Day Transcribe-a-Thon (February 14th)

Colored ConventionsHASTAC and the Nexus Digital Research Co-op invite you to participate in Douglass Day, a 200th birthday party for Frederick Douglass.

Although Douglass was born into bondage, and never knew his birthdate, he chose to celebrate every year on February 14. We will commemorate his birthday by creating Black history together.

Attendance is free, and we welcome all faculty, staff, students, and community members.

Please RSVP here so we can ensure enough refreshments for all transcribe-a-thon volunteers.

Douglass Day in 2018

This year we will feature a transcribe-a-thon on the Freedmen's Bureau Papers. Colored Conventions is co-presenting Douglass Day with the Smithsonian Transcription Center and the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

The Freedmen’s Bureau Transcription Project

The National Museum of African American History and Culture has collaborated with the Smithsonian Transcription Center to transcribe nearly 2 million image files from the Freedmen’s Bureau records. The Transcription Center is a platform where digital volunteers can transcribe and review transcriptions of Smithsonian collections. The Freedmen’s Bureau Transcription Project is the largest crowdsourcing initiative ever sponsored by the Smithsonian.

The Freedmen’s Bureau Transcription Project will allow anyone with internet access to research his or her family’s history online. The Museum began this project in an effort to help African Americans discover their ancestors and help historians better understand the years following the Civil War.

Attendance is free, and we welcome all faculty, staff, community members, and students. Please RSVP here so we have enough refreshments for all transcribe-a-thon volunteers.

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Thank you for an inspiring 2018 Nexus Gathering!

Thank you to our colleagues for an amazing 2018 Nexus Gathering, which was the official launch party of the Nexus Digital Research Co-op (formerly the Nexus Lab). We were so pleased to have our colleagues in the space to celebrate our community and chat about possibilities. Thank you, also, to those who were unable to make it in person, but became members of the co-op via our membership form.



The Nexus Digital Research Co-op will spend this semester focusing on 3-5 seed projects, with co-op members dedicating their time and expertise to developing these projects as a community, learning or teaching new skills in a creative, collaborative space. Members are encouraged to bring their expertise and/or learn skills in topics such as (but not limited to): grant writing, copyediting, archival research and telling local histories, transforming and documenting datasets in different formats, and exploring topics related to the Internet of Things. 

During the get-together and based on conversations with our colleagues beforehand, Nexus is also planning to organize brainstorming sessions to facilitate broad topical conversations and transdisciplinary communication. We also plan to continue organizing Possibility Lunches, inviting co-op members to present briefly on a topic and then encourage discussion that advances future co-op projects, research, or resource sharing. And our Nexus space (RDH 197) is open from 9-5pm for co-working hours almost every day - we welcome you to inhabit the physical Nexus space with us as we each work to shape the future of digital research at ASU.

Thank you to the Nexus community for your interest in community development, mutual care, and distributed expertise.

Keep up with co-op work, projects, and more by checking our Nexus Twitter feed or checking the Nexus workboard located at Arizona State University, Ross-Blakely Hall, Room 197 (pictured to the left).

Interested in joining the co-op? Our membership form is now live.

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2018 Nexus Gathering (January 24th)

You are cordially invited to our 2018 Nexus Gathering, where you will discover how the Nexus Digital Research Co-op (formerly the Nexus Lab) is creating a sustainable communal structure for digital research and resource sharing! 


Wednesday, January 24th, 2018
2-3:30pm | Ross-Blakely Hall 197


Meet the staff members and fellow researchers, explore our new space, and discover how you can be part of an organization that promotes community development, values collaborative research and creative work, and emphasizes mutual care and distributed expertise. We hope to see you for milk, cookies, appetizers, and conversation in the Nexus space this week! 

Interested in joining the co-op? Our membership form is now live.

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Praxis Salon: Embodied Practices for Digital Technology Research (11/8/2017)

Join HS Collab for this fall's first Praxis Salon on "Embodied Practices for Digital Technology Research" on November 8, 2017 from 3-5pm in the Nelson Fine Arts Center (FAC), Room 231. In this workshop, we will explore the central role of palpability - or the felt experience of our moving bodies - in digital technology research and scholarship. This workshop is for anyone exploring new digital technologies in design, scholarship, or art making. Previous movement training neither expected or required.

RSVP for this event at RSVP is required! Event limited to 12 participants. 

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Counting the Dead: Arizona and the Forgotten Pandemic

A new multimedia installation at ASU Library is calling attention to the 100-year anniversary of the "forgotten pandemic," a worldwide influenza which killed more people between 1918-1920 than were collectively killed in World War I, World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.


A unique, self-guided tour of experiential data, "Counting the Dead" aims to re-embody Arizona's influenza mortality data from one century ago, illustrating the ways in which illness has spread across our then young state. 


Enjoy the launch of the exhibit in Hayden Library with comfort and wellness food, along with other offered wellness resources. 


Tuesday, October 17, 2017

2-4 PM

Hayden Library, Upper Concourse

This exhibit will be open to the public through November 12, 2017. 

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Call for Proposals: GLAM+Universities Projects on Migration, Mobility, and Belonging

With the generous support of a PLuS Alliance seed grant, we are seeking proposals for projects that will test methods for creating and maintaining collaborative, multi-institutional, publicly engaged cultural ecologies on the subject of migration. Organized under the broad title mobility and belonging, we welcome proposals related to the historical, economic, political phenomena of colonization, decolonization, conflict, capital, globalization, and/or environmental displacement. We seek projects that wish to employ technology in innovative ways to bridge the gaps between Universities and GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives, and/or Museums) institutions, and facilitate more effective ways of communicating with the public.

The PLuS Alliance is a partnership of Arizona State University, King’s College London, and University of New South Wales. One project per participating institution will be selected and supported with $2,500.00 for student research/research assistant/research associate/production and $1,500.00 in materials (all dollar amounts in local currency). Additionally, our funding will cover travel to Sydney for a collaborative symposium for project team leads. Selected project leads will also have access to the expertise of both a local PLuS Alliance Fellow and three project experts on digital scholarship, public humanities, migration studies and/or GLAM institution collaboration. We also anticipate that this seed grant will lead to one or more major grant applications and project participants will be invited and encouraged to participate.

This project is designed to experiment with best practices for social, ethical, political, and technological/digital infrastructures for GLAM+University research (GLAM = Galleries, Libraries, Archives, and Museums). It prioritizes relationship building/partnerships and programming (exhibitions, knowledge sharing events, other dialogical formats etc.) that are led by or are in collaboration with those who have been affected by migration (in the expanded sense we define below) as a means to begin to shape and re-shape cultural institutions collectively.

Drawing on our shared areas of expertise at UNSW, ASU, and KCL we are focusing on a subject that is served well by the GLAM-University interface and is of critical importance to our specific locations and civil society on a global scale: migration. By migration, we mean the historic, (often) voluntary migrations that contributed to the settler colonial nations the United States and Australia are partly founded upon. Critically, however, we also mean forced migrations that include slavery and human displacements that are a consequence of limited options--from the movement of people due to political turmoil and war, to the ones precipitated by global economic inequality and exploitation and, increasingly, environmental change. We also mean the migrations that were forced onto indigenous peoples of settler-colonies of Australia and the United States by European Empires.

GLAM institutions and universities are well placed to build better understanding of the highly complex historical and contemporary experiences of migration. For example, institutional entities like museums and universities have historic ties to the violence of both forced and voluntary migration; they are also the sites that people – both the public and researchers – turn to in order to find the traces of marginalized subjects in our respective cultures. Further, as cultural infrastructures, GLAM institutions and Universities must grapple with the complicated – often very vertical - power networks that flow through our work and institutions. These include, in the case of the United States and Australia, our shared historical realities as settler-colonial nations. On the one hand, the issues around migration and belonging are constitutive of the work we do in terms of exhibiting and interpreting our cultural heritage as scholars, curators, and public historians. On the other, the infrastructures that make this work possible have been – or can be - radically transformed by 21st century technologies and social practices. Consequently, GLAM + Universities are sites where these tensions around mobility and infrastructure enable us to forge new narratives about who we are, what we hope to become, and the tools we want to craft for the future. They are also the sites where we can and must develop new methods and relationships for 21st century scholarship and civic engagement.

Proposal Guidelines and Information
Please note that all projects must be able to mount a small public event at minimum within the 12-month time frame of this seed grant. Projects that are already underway and would benefit from resources for student research work, GLAM partnership, and public outreach are highly encouraged. Applications may come from anyone within the three universities, but are also welcomed from GLAM institutions that do not yet have or want to expand relationships with one of the participating institutions.

All applications should demonstrate a clear partnership between at least one university and a GLAM institution. While the two need not be co-located in a city or geographic region, it may be beneficial given the limitations of this seed grant phase.

Project teams agree to work with their project teams and PLuS Alliance leads to identify any areas of further development and to forge the appropriate relationships required for the project. Project teams will determine what kinds of infrastructural and/or institutional experimentation or prototyping they will be undertaking with their projects (knowledge sharing, personal relationship building, digital sharing, physical resource sharing, co-curation, or other) and will draft their own assessment materials. Project teams will be expected to send at least one team member to the in-person meeting in Sydney (date TBD, to be funded by grant) and the virtual meeting (April 2018), where the network will author draft a report with key take-aways and recommendations for future GLAM+University collaboration.

To apply, please send the following materials to Professor Jacqueline Wernimont ( via email by 8 p.m. GMT April 2, 2017:

• 2-3 page cover letter outlining your proposed project, including how it engages with migration as a political, cultural, economic, historical phenomena (including but not limited to mobility and belonging), partner institutions, and a description of the planned public exhibit (may be digital or analogue). Please also provide a statement regarding how this grant opportunity will help you/your team further develop the creative-collaborative ecology in your area.

• A 1-2 page summary of participants, their qualifications, and their roles.

• Documentation (letters of commitment or evidence of access/ownership) that indicates the project team has the necessary assets or access thereto to mount the exhibition.

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ASU and Nexus Lab Becomes New HASTAC Partner

The Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology Alliance and Collaboratory (HASTAC) has announced Arizona State University as its partner institution after a competitive, nation-wide search. HASTAC is a leading organization in the pursuit of innovative modes of research and education, with over 15,000 members and 400 affiliated organizations around the world.

The announcement comes at the conclusion of a competitive nationwide search in which three semi-finalists were invited to submit detailed proposals offering their vision for HASTAC. ASU was chosen as a partner uniquely positioned to advance HASTAC’s core mission and values: innovative, collaborative, open, transdisciplinary research and teaching made stronger by diversity. HASTAC’s Steering Committee made the final selection.

At Arizona State University, HASTAC will be embedded within the Nexus Lab for Digital Humanities and Computational Informatics. The Nexus Lab was created by Dr. Michael Simeone in 2013 as a hub for digital humanities collaborations at ASU. In the past three years, the Nexus Lab has created new research collaborations and pathways both on campus and off, played a key role in several major research grants, and attained national prominence by hosting the HASTAC 2016 conference in Tempe.

Dr. Jacqueline Wernimont, Assistant professor of English and Interim Director of the Nexus Lab at ASU, will be HASTAC’s new co-director. Wernimont has more than a decade of experience in digital humanities and digital cultures. She is a nationally recognized leader in digital archives, feminist digital media, histories of quantification, and technologies of commemoration. Wernimont also has a long track record of working with HASTAC, having received a Digital Media and Learning grant in 2015, administered by HASTAC.

Filling the role previously held by prestigious institutions such as Duke University and Stanford, ASU will divide HASTAC’s central administration with the City University of New York (CUNY). HASTAC Co-Founding Director Cathy N. Davidson (Director of the Futures Initiative, CUNY Graduate Center) explains that ASU was chosen from a highly competitive pool because “ASU's proposal was a model of vision, practicality, and innovation with an emphasis too on access, inclusion, and diversity.” She added that “this should come as no surprise… ASU has distinguished itself as one of the most forward-looking universities in the United States.”

In tandem with CUNY leadership, Wernimont will now oversee and further develop HASTAC’s significant sources of data, research, technology, and social networking expertise, as well as its cutting-edge website. HASTAC is considered the world’s first and oldest academic social network, and serves as a virtual commons for everything from creative collaboration opportunities to the latest news on pioneering educational technology. Wernimont feels “deeply honored” to be working with Cathy Davidson and the HASTAC community, explaining that “this partnership allows CUNY and ASU to work together to continue transforming higher education and research such that it is inclusive, of public value, and assumes responsibility for the care of our communities.”

The Nexus Lab, a project of ASU’s Institute for Humanities Research aimed at growing the digital humanities alongside interdisciplinary collaborations among the humanities, science, and technology. In the three years since its inception, the lab has grown to become one of the leading centers for innovative modes of research at ASU. Such work is key to addressing the mounting “wicked problems” faced by humanity. “The grand challenges that the world faces today, including issues related to water, energy, security and food, cannot be solved by just one discipline,” said Sethuraman Panchanathan, executive vice president of Knowledge Enterprise Development and chief research and innovation officer at ASU. “Researchers from across disciplines have to work together to find comprehensive and sustainable solutions for these challenges. ASU is one of world’s leading universities in driving innovative, interdisciplinary research and discoveries. The partnership with HASTAC will help us have a wider, more transformational impact.”

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