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DHMoReLAB For a digital cultural business

Important and substantial documents dating back to the period between the 15th and 18th centuries, together with ancient manuscripts existing on the territory of Modena, will become more broadly available thanks to the most advanced IT technologies applied to humanities.

This is the mission of the Interdepartmental Research Centre on Digital Humanities of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia (DHMoRe) with the project named “DHMoReLAB For a cultural business: protection services, study and dissemination of the material cultural heritage”.

Supported by a 400,000 euro financing of Regione Emilia-Romagna, the project has made 10 new positions available for young researchers. 

Purpose of the project is the development of new services and multimedia approaches to the cultural heritage that, especially at a time like the present, in which manufacturing, cultural, and social activities are suspended, that enhances the importance and the benefits of digitalisation.

This project - the Director of the Centre, professor Elena Fumagalli explains - includes the collaboration of highly qualified personnel in both humanities and IT sectors, with specific focus on the fields of Artificial Intelligence, Visual Computing, and Innovative Interfaces: the Centre aims at consolidating its role as point of reference for partnerships and counselling for the cultural business, thus promoting the dialogue between the public and the private sectors”.

In fact, the realisation of this project will give the opportunity to integrate the industrial structure of the cultural and creative business - which is increasingly flourishingly in our region -, with new contributions.

Despite the emergency and to give a glimmer of hope - the project scientific manager, professor Matteo Al Kalak explains - we have decided to start with the works, and specifically with two laboratories. T he first one develops algorithms and software for the reproduction of the cultural object, aimed at the demi-automated calculation and an increased usability mainly of documental materials between the 15th and 18th centuries, which are widely available in our territory. The second one is more focused on innovation contents and is aimed at developing algorithms based on AI techniques for the automated reading of ancient manuscripts, an exciting challenge that could lead to important results in the field of humanities research”.

Rector Carlo Adolfo Porro expressed his satisfaction for the initiative: “The Centre on Digital Humanities of our University has the great mission of innovating the knowledge in humanities and making it available to an increasingly wider public. In this emergency period, a project like this confirms the strategic importance of research and involvement of young researchers. Our gratitude goes to our colleagues and the  Modena Foundation that, within the “Ago. Modena fabbriche culturali” context, has generously supported the start of the DHMoRe project and made available places for its activity”.

The project plans to achieve the complete cataloguing of one of the most important collections of European autographs, the one that belonged to Giuseppe Campori (1821-1887) and is currently owned by the Municipality of Modena, made of over 200,000 pieces stored in the Estense Libraryand the municipal Historical Archive. This heritage will be finally networked and made available all over the world through simple queries, even for non specialist users.

The experimental activities on automated reading will start from the manuscripts of two dear names to Modena: Lodovico Antonio Muratori and Giovanni Battista Spaccini who, between the 16th and 17th centuries, every day wrote the events of the city.

Categorie: International - english

Articolo pubblicato da: Ufficio Stampa Unimore - ufficiostampa@unimore.it il 26/04/2020