Software behind Models of Authority website wins inaugural MAA Digital Humanities Prize

We are very happy and honoured to announce that the DigiPal project has won the inaugural Digital Humanities Prize of the Medieval Academy of America. This project ran from 2010 to 2014 and first developed the software that now lies behind this website; the 'core' DigiPal team has since been working on the Exon Domesday and Models of Authority projects and have developed the software further as part of this.

 The full citation for the prize notes that

DigiPal’s innovative framework, collaborative origins, open access, quality design, and skillfully curated pilot collection make it an excellent model for the practice of digital humanities scholarship in the field of medieval studies.

I personally want to thank all the people who have contributed to DigiPal as a project and to the free and open-source software that we have continued to develop since the project finished in 2014; these thanks include the European Research Council who funded the whole project through an ERC Starting Grant. The citation formally credits the 'core' DigiPal team of Peter Stokes, Stewart Brookes and Geoffroy Noël, and I certainly want to thank my colleagues Stewart and Geoffroy, but  of course this is only a small seletion of the people who have contributed directly to the project over the last seven years. The DigiPalConqueror's Commissioners and Models of Authority projects, as well as smaller projects such as ScandiPal, SephardiPal, ViGOTHIC, and Polices des Caractères et Inscriptions Monétaires, along with the various advisory boards, student interns, and others, brings the total number of contributors to well over 30 people. These people and the Arts and Humanities Research Council, who funded Models of Authority and the Conqueror's Commissioners, all deserve recognition.

Finally, to give some sense of the significance of this award, here is some text on the Academy and prize (thanks to the MAA's Executive Director, Lisa Fagin Davis, for providing this):

The Medieval Academy of America is the largest organization in the world promoting excellence in the field of medieval studies. Headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the Academy was founded in 1925 and comprises more than 3500 members worldwide. Among other activities, the Academy publishes the quarterly journal Speculum and awards more than a dozen prizes, grants, and fellowships. In 2016, the Council of the Medieval Academy voted to add an annual Digital Humanities Prize to its slate of publication honors. More than twenty digital projects were nominated for the inaugural prize, which is being awarded to DigiPal. The Prize will be presented at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Medieval Academy, to be held at the University of Toronto from April 6-8. More information about the Medieval Academy can be found at

Congratulations again to everyone in the rapidly growing DigiPal community, and I look forward to working with you all more in the years to come.

Links and References

[This article has been cross-posted with minor changes on the DigiPalModels of Authority and Conqueror's Commissioners websites.]


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