Newly Launched Praxis Network Includes MSU Anthropology’s Cultural Heritage Informatics Initiative

We are delighted to announce the launch of the Praxis Network, a new partnership of graduate and undergraduate programs that emphasize innovative models of methodological training and collaborative research.

Part of the Mellon funded Scholarly Communication Institute’s current work on rethinking graduate education  the Praxis Network provides a closer look at selected programs that have taken unusual and effective approaches to core humanistic and social scientific methods, while also addressing how best to equip budding scholar-practitioners for a range of careers. The goals of each unique program are student-focused, digitally-inflected, interdisciplinary, and frequently oriented around collaborative projects.

In addition to the Anthropology Department’s Cultural Heritage Informatics Initiative, the Praxis Network features graduate programs at the University of VirginiaCUNY Graduate CenterUniversity College London, and Duke University, as well as undergraduate programs at Hope College and Brock University.  The Praxis Network website, which is the first product of the partnership, takes the important step of sharing information about the commonalities and unique properties of these programs that are making effective interventions in the traditional models of humanities and social science pedagogy and research.

About the Cultural Heritage Informatics Initiative

Since its 2010 launch, the Cultural Heritage Informatics (CHI) Initiative has been a platform for interdisciplinary scholarly collaboration in the domain of Cultural Heritage Informatics at Michigan State University. Based in the Department of Anthropology, the CHI Initiative has two primary activities. First, the Cultural Heritage Informatics Graduate Fellowship Program is designed to provide an opportunity for selected graduate students to collaboratively develop a significant and innovative cultural heritage informatics project. Through collaborative project development as well as guided instruction, fellows gain the theoretical and methodological skills necessary to creatively apply information, computing, and communication technologies to cultural heritage materials, questions, and problems.

The second major activity is the Cultural Heritage Informatics Fieldschool, an immersive five-week summer program offered every other year to graduate and undergraduate students, as well as existing professionals in the cultural heritage sector. Based on the pedagogical model of the archaeological fieldschool, the Cultural Heritage Informatics Fieldschool is an intensive theme-based program that leverages collaborative project development to teach skills needed to build applications and digital user experiences that serve the domain of cultural heritage—skills such as programming, media design, project management, user centered design, digital storytelling, and more.