DM Board Elections 2021-2023

Election results are in

We have the pleasure of announcing the results from the 2021 DM Executive Board elections for the term beginning in August 2021 and ending in July 2023. 140 DM members cast votes this year for four open seats. The four highest vote counts went to the following candidates who have now been elected to the board:
(in alphabetical order)

  • Lisa Fagin Davis
  • Rose Faunce
  • Gustavo Fernández Riva
  • Kivilcim Yavuz

We would like to thank the other candidates — Tsehay Ademe Belay, Bill Endres, Sean M. Winslow, and Ephrem Aboud Ishac — for standing for election and providing us with an outstandingly rich choice. Thank you for your participation!

To vote in the election you must be one of the subscribers to the Digital Medievalist mailing list. To vote, use the link and the voting token that have been sent to the email address that you have used to register to DM.
Board positions are for two year terms and incumbents may be re-elected. Members of the board are responsible for the overall direction of the organisation. This is a working board and candidates should be willing and able to commit time to Digital Medievalist. For more information about the election procedure, board roles and bylaws, see:

2021-2023 Candidates

Sean Winslow

Sean Winslow studied History at the University of California at Santa Cruz before going on to receive an MA and PhD in Medieval Studies, Book History, and Print Culture from the University of Toronto. His work focuses on the scribal cultures of the Christian world, specifically Ethiopia and the Oriental Churches. He currently works as a Post-Doc at the Centre for Information Modelling – Austrian Centre for the Digital Humanities of the University of Graz, where he works on the modelling of manuscript data and metadata in the TEI. Recent work includes the conversion of Charters Encoding Initiative data to the TEI for the Illuminierte Urkunden project and as part of the modernization of the Monasterium digital charters portal. His other projects include his forthcoming book on Ethiopian scribal practices, the digital cataloguing of Ethiopian binding decoration via IIIF, and the digital component of a catalogue of Syriac manuscript treasures.

Digital practices in medieval studies have been blossoming at the same time that we have seen a steady increase in interest in non-European stories from the Middle Ages. As someone whose scholarly work straddles the Latin and Oriental Churches, I believe that there is much meaningful cross-disciplinary work to be done improving our understanding of the diversity and connectedness of the medieval world. Digital methods represent a key opportunity to understudied areas of the medieval world; the advent of new availability through the sharing of IIIF is having a transformational effect in my field of Ethiopian manuscript studies alone. As a DM Board Member, I would like to explore ways that we, as the Digital Medievalist community, can play an active and helpful role in connecting scholars working on under-represented subjects and from under-resourced countries with opportunities and mentoring from more-established areas of the digital humanities community, and encourage collaboration on grants and workshops.

Lisa Fagin Davis

Lisa Fagin Davis (Medieval Studies PhD, Yale University, 1993) has been Executive Director of the Medieval Academy of America since 2013. Previously, she spent twenty years cataloguing pre-1600 manuscript collections across the US and has been involved in the development of metadata standards for manuscript cataloguing. She serves on the Advisory Committees for Digital Scriptorium, the Schoenberg Institute of Manuscript Studies, and Fragmentarium, and is deeply engaged in using and promoting both Mirador and IIIF. Publications include: the Beinecke Library Catalogue of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts, Vol. IV; The Gottschalk Antiphonary; the Directory of Pre-1600 Manuscripts in the United States and Canada (with Melissa Conway); numerous articles in the fields of manuscript studies and codicology; La Chronique Anonyme Universelle: Reading and Writing History in fifteenth-century France (a critical edition that includes a digital resource developed in collaboration with the Digital Mappaemundi project); and the Manuscript Road Trip blog. She regularly teaches an introduction to manuscript studies at the Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science and has taught Latin Paleography at Yale University.

It has been a pleasure to serve on the DM Board for the last few years, and I am eager to continue to serve. In the last few years, we have grown DM programming, expanded governance to include a post-graduate sub-committee, and launched a worldwide three-part DM symposium, among other accomplishments. As a Board member, I attend regular meetings, co-chaired the Americas part of the symposium and have moderated several DM panels. I also serve on the Editorial Board of the DM Journal. I look forward to contributing to DM’s continued growth in the coming years.

Rose Faunce

Rose Faunce (Ph.D. University of Melbourne, 2017) is part of the Research Services division in the College of Asia and the Pacific, Australian National University, and manages the College’s collection of art and artefacts. She has a background in the study of the history of the illustrated book, working for several years in the rare book and antiquarian print trade, specialising in natural history illustration. An encounter with the 14th century fragmentary Cocharelli Codex, dispersed in collections in London, Florence and Cleveland, led to a PhD under the supervision of Emeritus Professor Margaret Manion, to reconstruct transcribe and translate its text, and analyse the rich profusion of illustration gracing every page. Now, an intrepid ‘fragmentologist’, she is always on the look out for fragments of medieval manuscripts. Working with Fragmentarium, University of Fribourg, Switzerland, she oversees a project to identify and catalogue manuscript fragments in Australian and New Zealand collections to improve access to them for pedagogical and research purposes.

Tsehay Ademe Belay

Tsehay Ademe Belay (since 2020) is researcher and lecturer at Addis Abeba University, Academy of Ethiopian Languages and Cultures. He has served as the Managing Editor for Zena-Lisan for the Journal of the Academy. He is currently working towards a PhD in Manuscripts Studies at the Philology Department of Addis Ababa University. Since 2016, he has worked as an assistant researcher at Capuchin Franciscan Research Retreat Center. He received his M.A in Syriac language and literature from the St. Ephrem Ecumenical Research Institute, Kotayam, India, and M.A in philology from Addis Ababa University. He has published on the Gә’әz by Gә’әz Tәrәgwame with Arabic commentary according to Matthew’s gospel.

Ge’ez manuscripts and writings materials have significant potential for the study of ancient and medieval Ethiopian indigenous knowledge. These manuscripts must be preserved through digitization for scholars to have access. Currently, Ethiopia is experiencing different conflicts which is leading to the destruction of these artefacts in various parts of the country. Preservation through digitization, cataloging, and codicological study is imperative.

Bill Endres

Bill Endres is an Associate Professor in the English department at the University of Oklahoma. In 2008, he completed his PhD on the Book of Kells at Arizona State University. In 2010, he began digitizing the St Chad Gospels at Lichfield Cathedral (England). Bill has used a number of imaging and post-processing techniques to reveal otherwise hidden aspects of the manuscript’s materiality, advanced techniques such as multispectral imaging, 3D capture, reflectance transformation imaging (RTI), and digitizing and registering historical photographs, transparencies, and slides. Through digital recovery techniques, Bill has revealed damaged and erased content; through RTI, discovered new dry-point writing; and through registration of historical images, revealed trends in aging and effects of conservation treatments. His website Manuscripts of Lichfield Cathedral provides innovative and interactive access to his digitization of the St Chad Gospels and Lichfield Cathedral’s Wycliffe New Testament—including Creative Commons downloads. Currently, for studying and teaching manuscripts, he is experimenting with a robust virtual reality (VR) environment that he built in partnership with the University of Oklahoma Libraries. Bill is author of Digitizing Medieval Manuscripts: The St Chad Gospels, Materiality, Recoveries, and Representation in 2D & 3D (ARC Humanities Press, 2019).

I would very much enjoy joining the Digital Medievalist’s Executive Board. It would give me the opportunity to give back to an organization that I have looked to since my time as a graduate student. I bring a wide range of experiences in digitalization, including multispectral imaging, 3D capture, reflectance transformation imaging (RTI), and imaging and registering historical photographs to assess aging. I have also done substantial web design and development, as demonstrated in my website Manuscripts of Lichfield Cathedral, built for my digitization of the St Chad Gospels and Lichfield Cathedral’s Wycliffe New Testament ( Furthermore, since 2015, I have worked with the University of Oklahoma Libraries to build a virtual reality (VR) environment for studying and teaching manuscripts. I would enjoy using all of my digital experience to advance the mission of the Digital Medievalist, but particularly to support and build resources for emerging VR possibilities.

Gustavo Fernández Riva

Gustavo Fernández Riva is a Postdoctoral Scholar at the University of Heidelberg (Germany). As a member of the Collaborative Research Centre ‘Material Text Cultures’, he develops tools for editing and researching pre-modern written artefacts, specifically relic labels, ancient letters, epigraphic inscriptions, and illuminated manuscripts. Since March 2021, he also lectures in the Digital Humanities degree at the UCES (Argentina), where he teaches a module on data analysis and visualization. He studied medieval literature at the universities of Buenos Aires (Argentina) and Porto (Portugal). His Ph.D. dissertation (University of Buenos Aires, 2018) included a critical edition in TEI and Spanish translation of texts by the Middle High German poet Konrad von Würzburg. He has also co-edited Der arme Heinrich – digital. His current research projects include using network analysis to study shared manuscript transmission of medieval texts and the creation of an open, collaborative dataset of philological stemmata.

There are just so many – and fascinating – things to do in the intersection of medieval studies and digital humanities! Digital Medievalist has been a central hub promoting research and dialogue in this area and it would be a pleasure and an honour to contribute to it more directly.

I think there are many important challenges and opportunities facing medieval studies in an increasingly digital world. On the one hand, we should explore, develop and consolidate the possibilities of computational technologies to improve our research. Now is the time to create the materials that will enable enhanced research in the coming decades: digital facsimiles, editions, linguistic corpora, dictionaries, vocabularies, databases. These digital resources are the foundation for the successful implementation of data intensive research perspectives like stylometry or network analysis. On the other hand, this digital approach should be grounded – although critically – in the traditional methodologies, tools, and knowledge that are still highly valuable and fundamental for our work. Moreover, we also need to approach medieval studies from a global perspective. This includes both promoting the study of under-researched languages and communities, as well as expanding the networks of people around the world researching, teaching, or just curious about the medieval past. As a member of the DM Board, I would seek to expand our community, by reaching out and listening to both new and experienced medievalists around the world to discuss the benefits and challenges of the digital turn for our discipline.

Kıvılcım Yavuz

N. Kıvılcım Yavuz is the first Ann Hyde Postdoctoral Researcher of the Kenneth Spencer Research Library at the University of Kansas. She is working on enhancing access to the library’s substantial holdings of medieval and early modern European manuscripts by conducting new research and creating digital catalogue records for an open access digital repository for the manuscripts. Previously, she was Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Arnamagnæan Institute at the University of Copenhagen. Her work on the Latin manuscripts in the Arnamagnæan Collection resulted, among her other findings, in the rediscovery of a long-thought-to-be-lost library catalogue of Ferdinand Columbus. She serves on the Advisory Board of an ongoing project on this manuscript, “The Book of Books: Hernando Colón’s Libro de los Epítomes,” which is funded by the Carlsberg Foundation and which aims to create a digital edition of the fifteenth-century catalogue. Between August 2016 and August 2018, she was Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow at the Arnamagnæan Institute at the University of Copenhagen, working on her EU-funded project entitled “Transtextual Networks in the European Middle Ages: A Digital Corpus of the Trojan Narrative in Latin Manuscripts,” during when she created a digital catalogue of around 300 manuscripts. She has a BA in Comparative Literature (Istanbul Bilgi University) and an MA and a PhD in Medieval Studies (University of Leeds). She has taught courses on the history of the late antique, medieval and Renaissance Europe, medieval European literature, manuscript studies and digital humanities in Leeds, Copenhagen, Reykjavík, Leipzig and Lawrence, KS. Website: Twitter: @nkivilcimyavuz

My work in the field of digital medieval studies has been mostly focused on manuscript studies. In this regard, I am especially interested in the creation, collection and interpretation of data and metadata, particularly in the context of digitization of manuscripts and design of digital repositories. There is an immense potential in the area of digital manuscript studies ranging from handwritten text recognition to network analysis to editing previously unpublished texts, and I would like to see more training opportunities and more projects concentrating on pre-modern manuscripts in the digital context. The field of digital humanities has been a contested area of study both conceptually and practically, and for many medievalists an area difficult to enter and engage with. I am, however, hopeful of recent developments in the field, especially the employment of concepts of minimal computing, such as strategies pertaining to increased access and sustainability. I am an avid supporter of open access initiatives and, for me, becoming an open hub for research and cooperation is one of the most important achievements of Digital Medievalist. I also value the power of social media in increasing the dissemination of scholarship on manuscripts and consider writing blogposts not only as engaging with digital humanities but also essential in order to reach the widest possible audience. I post about manuscripts I research on Twitter and Instagram with the handle @manuscriptsetc. I am especially invested in supporting early career scholars and medievalists from underrepresented backgrounds, whether through instruction or collaboration, and I would be interested in contributing towards a more inclusive environment if I were to be elected to the Digital Medievalist Executive Board.

Ephrem Aboud Ishac

Ephrem Aboud Ishac is a postdoc researcher at Vestigia Manuscript Research Center – University of Graz (since 2014, right after defending his PhD on Syriac Liturgy), where he has been working on editing, TEI encoding and constructing the digital textual corpus of the Syriac liturgical Anaphoras, in addition to his work on cataloguing the Syriac manuscripts and fragments at the Matenadaran – Yerevan collections (Armenia) and the Syrian Orthodox Patriarchate Library (Syria/Lebanon). He taught also at the Vestigia summer schools in Graz University (in cooperation with the Special Collections department and the Institute Centre for Information Modelling – Austrian Centre for Digital Humanities) and in Zadar University (in cooperation with the Department of Information Sciences, University of Zadar, Croatia).

Since 2015 he has been teaching in Austria: Syriac Language and Liturgy, at the University of Salzburg and at the Central European University. Since 2017 he became a research fellow at FSCIRE – Fondazione per le Scienze Religiose Giovanni XXIII, Bologna (Italy), working on the forthcoming critical edition of the East and West Syriac texts of Synods (Synodicon), using different digital editorial solutions, in addition to his participation in ReIReS workshops (Research Infrastructure on Religious Studies) on Digital Humanities.

He is a contributor to the Sedra lexicographical Syriac database, an area editor to the Simtho Syriac digital Thesaurus, and an advisor for the Syriac digital humanities summer schools (currently working on creating a TEI module for the Syriac liturgical texts) at Beth Mardutho – The Syriac Institute, New Jersey.

Since 2019, he is the editor for Syriac studies for The Digital Orientalist e-Magazine. Ephrem has been participating in various conferences and workshops presenting studies on the role of using digital tools in Syriac liturgy “From ancient Manuscripts to Digital Screens”, in addition to several posts on the “History of Syriac Digital Humanities” and identifying some manuscripts and fragments (also tracing their routes of migration “as refugees”) using different digital approaches.

His recent book “Tracing Written Heritage in a Digital Age” presents several articles with a special focus on employing different digital tools in studying a wide range of various manuscript cultures. His first contribution in the volume, traces the routes of the migrating Syriac manuscripts and fragments which are now at the Yale Divinity School Library and the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library – Yale University. His second contribution, proposes a project to create a comprehensive Syriac liturgical corpus with a new digital strategy.  

Dear DM list members,

As you can notice from my short biography, my research interest in the Syriac digital humanities can sharpen the scope of our Digital Medievalist community, which I am honored and pleased to serve at the Executive Board. Not to mention, I will be glad to share my time, efforts, and experience to launch a new horizon together, for a promising research future and constructive discussions.

While being connected confidently with other academic groups, international scholarly communities, and societies, my scope is to bridge the gaps among the various initiatives on digital humanities to exchange knowledge and broaden the mind for a wider spectrum of academic collaborations. This vision of openness toward other networks can mark our next stage, where we can learn from each other by enhancing our community with the spirit of digital oriental heritage (especially Arabic, Coptic, and Syriac), which is not noticeable yet in our current Digital Medievalist community.

So, while looking forward to working with you All, I extend in advance my sincere thanks for trusting me in carrying the torch of our community!