Progress Report

It’s been 3-months since my last post, in great part because we have been very busy behind the scenes. As you’ve probably noticed, we’ve rolled out our very own content management software, “MOM”. Now that we are in full control of our back-end, we’ve been able to add a lot of references to the database (we’re up to a 1000, including the full bibliography of Hendrik Pos, and with Jakobson’s on its way) and have started implementing some of the nifty features which will hopefully make sdvig a very user-friendly platform.  For example, it is now possible to quickly find all the translations and other editions of a given text.

We are a bit behind schedule with the Digitise! programme, as the implementation of MOM took us more time  than we thought. And we still need to fine-tune the management of users. We’d like to have something solid in place before opening up registrations to avoid mayhem and discourage potential contributors. We’re hoping that everything will be ready before Spring. In the meantime, we have got the Max Scheler Society on board and will be discussing publishing issues next April in Prague at their next meeting. We hope we can take advantage of the digitisation effort on the platform to also move forward with the publication of his unpublished materials.

As regard to the scientific side of things, we have all sorts of exciting plans and ideas, fueled in part by the untiring Hans Rainer Sepp. Michal Mrugalski has made excellent progress in putting together an impressive board for his series Teoria on Polish Thought, and Janette Friedrich is doing likewise for her series on the history of psychology. The board for the structuralist series I run is now complete and work will begin very soon on planning the contours of the series. On top of all this historically oriented work, we’re considering adding a more reflexive series on the concept of Europe itself. The whole sdvig project is indeed “ideological” informed by a certain conception of Europe as a unified space marked by discontinuities and ruptures which it might be fruitful to question and refine. Just as the realisation of a digital research platform such as sdvig can become an object of studies from the perspectives of the Digital Humanities, so can (and should) its ideological or programmatic underpinning.

Slightly embarassingly, our editorial plan for the year has yet to materialise. We hope that our re-edition of Sievers’ Rhythmisch-melodische Studien will be ready around Easter. Pos’s Zur Logik der Sprachwissenschaft will be next, as should the first volume of Marty’s Complete Works. To be honest, the publication of the print editions is not a top priority at the moment, as it is much more important for the short-term developement of the project to get the IT infrastructure ready.

Crucially to us and least interestingly to everybody else, we’re ramping up the financial side of things. The project is now officially out of its pilot phase and I believe it is sufficiently mature to apply for serious funding. We’ll be starting by looking around in Switzerland (SNF, as well as other public and private foundations) and might give the EU a try if paperwork is not too daunting.


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