CSDH/SCHN 2017 Outstanding Contribution Award

Stéfan Sinclair and Geoffrey Rockwell are the winners of the CSDH/SCHN 2017 Outstanding Contribution Award for Voyant Tools 2.0 and Hermeneutica: Computer-Assisted Interpretation in the Humanities (MIT 2016). Stéfan Sinclair is Associate Professor of Digital Humanities at McGill University and Director of the McGill Centre for Digital Humanities. Geoffrey Rockwell is Professor of Philosophy and Humanities Computing at the University of Alberta and Director of the Kule Institute for Advanced Study.

Hermeneutica and Voyant 2.0 were among many exceptional projects nominated for the Outstanding Contribution Award. The nominated projects were wide ranging, with impact in the digital humanities and communities beyond. It was an especial pleasure to read about the impact and reach of Dr. Sinclair and Dr. Rockwell’s digital and print scholarship. The Voyant 2.0 text analysis tools are available in nine languages, and have outstanding reach: the most-used tools hosted by Compute Canada, they are accessed 1.1 million times per month. In praise of the toolset Shawn Graham, Ian Milligan, and Scott Weingart call Voyant “arguably the best research portal in existence… Even the most seasoned Big Data humanist can turn to Voyant for quick checks, or when they are dealing with smaller (yet still large) repositories.” Hermeneutica: Computer-Assisted Interpretation in the Humanities offers a compelling history of text analysis, interleaved with examples of the new research questions and arguments that text analysis affords. Through the book Dr. Sinclair and Dr. Rockwell have, as Chad Gaffield’s advises readers, “set a new standard for probing both the conceptual underpinnings and the epistemological potential of digitally enabled interpretations of written expression.”

We thank Stéfan Sinclair and Geoffrey Rockwell and their team for outstanding scholarship in the digital humanities, and for the new discoveries, insights, and arguments that Hermeneutica and Voyant 2.0 catalyze. We congratulate them on winning the CSDH/SCHN Outstanding Contribution Award.