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12 million euros for digital infrastructure

CLARIAH, a consortium of Humanities Research Institutes, is to receive a grant of 12 million euros from The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO). The grant will fund the development of a digital infrastructure that combines diverse data sets and software tools from various humanities’ disciplines, and to provide user-friendly tools to search through these data sets and make them searchable. New digital tools will enable researchers to explore profound questions of cultural and social change across the disciplines.

CLARIAH will deliver the infrastructure for the paradigm shift now taking place within the humanities. Many researchers see Digital Humanities as the most important development in the profession but, until now, it has not really been possible to get a coherent picture of the increasing amounts of digital data from the separate disciplines.

Role of the Meertens Institute and other KNAW institutes

The Meertens Institute was one of the co-applicants for CLARIAH and is, together with the IISH and the Huygens ING largely responsible for building and maintaining this digital infrastructure. The three KNAW institutes thus play an important role in guaranteeing the continuity of the project.

CLARIAH stands for Common Lab Research Infrastructure for the Arts and Humanities. CLARIAH is one of the six projects of the so-called Roadmap that NWO presented on July 1st to Sander Dekker, State Secretary for Education, Culture and Science.

Three disciplines play a pioneering role in CLARIAH:

  • Social economic history: Utrecht University, VU University Amsterdam and International Institute of Social History (KNAW)
  • Linguistics: Meertens Institute (KNAW), VU University Amsterdam and Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Media studies: University of Amsterdam and the National Institute of Sound and Vision

Besides the organisations named, a large number of other Humanities researchers and organisations will be involved in CLARIAH. For more information go to:

Press release (link to pdf)