Participants: Daniel Apollon, Dino Buzzetti, Harold Short, Koenraad de Smedt (chairman), Maddalena Toscano (new member).
The signed contract for the third project year (1998-1999) has been received. The maximum grant is 55.000 EUR or 18.01 % of the total project cost. The advance of 80 % of this money has not yet been received by May 1, 1999. The accounts for the present year show that a substantial amount of the grant is still available.
The CL working group had a meeting in January (together with the TNP on Speech Communication Sciences). Minutes are available.
The NEL and FM working groups both had meetings in April. Minutes are available.
The working group on History and historical informatics is planning the organization of a series of retraining courses aimed at Ph.D. students and junior staff. The goal of the courses is to teach the use of IT in teaching. Four of these courses are planned in 1999 at different universities of Europe, covering different subtopics. However, no details on these plans are available at present. UIB will be approached.
The working group on Textual Scholarship has not yet planned any meeting this year, but may have a chance to meet at the ACH-ALLC conference in June 1999. Anthea Ballam is taking over some of the work with the chapter, in cooperation with the ALLC. She will be employed for 4 weeks. The coordination of the working group should, however, remain with Espen Ore at UIB/HIT. UIB will be approached.
After the resignation of William Vaughan as coordinator of the working group on History of Art, Architecture and Design, a solution has been mediated by Harold Short. Hazel Gardiner, partly employed at the Courtauld Institute, is prepared to carry out work on the chapter. For this purpose, she will be employed part-time either at King's College or at the Courtauld Institute, paid by the TNP. Marilyn Deegan and William Vaughan will lend their support, the latter possibly as formal editor of the chapter.
Several working groups have made good progress on writing chapters for the publication. The deadline for the first complete draft is June, the firm final deadline is July 12.
The findings of the report are discussed. They suggest several options for securing the future of the network, see below.
The steering committee considered the publication of the conference proceedings as a potential activity for dissemination, but ultimately rejects the idea, because a whole year will have elapsed before the fourth year is starting. Instead it seems that several specific dissemination activities, each with specific goals and target groups, must be considered. Some possible audiences consist of teaching staff, students, education planners, industry, archives, museums and libraries. Three working groups (CL, NEL and TS) have already expressed more or less concrete ideas for dissemination activities.
By way of Harold Short, the ALLC expresses that it remains very committed to ACO*HUM and to continuing participation in any extension or 'next phase' of the project. It needs to be taken into account that the ALLC is international, not just European, that it is an association of individuals, and that it is oriented towards research as well as education. That being said, the ALLC is planning a series of concrete activities, including surveys and training programmes, which are (also) oriented towards education and teaching staff. The ALLC wants to enter bids for the 5th Framework Programme, possibly proposing a centre of excellence and RTD projects on the use of tools and resources.
The ALLC wants to take a lead in textual scholarship but is at the same time closer to 'general' computing in the humanities than any other existing assocation. It might therefore consider the coordination of a TNP as a successor to ACO*HUM (Note: deadline for expressions of interest is Nov. 15). The ALLC's advantage is that its quasi-permanent infrastructure and membership can be used to benefit the activities of a thematic network project.
Koenraad de Smedt, March - May 18, 1999