Using humanities knowledge to explore bias in big data approaches to knowledge creation.
The KPLEX Project partners were funded under the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 research programme to undertake a 15-month investigation of the ways in which a focus on ‘big data’ in ICT research omits important issues about the information environment in which we live.
Lead by Trinity College Dublin, the project investigated 4 key themes: Toward a New Conceptualisation of Data; Hidden Data and the Historical Record; Data, Knowledge Organisation and Epistemics; and Culture and Representations of System Limitations.
DANS investigation theme was Hidden Data and the Historical Record; what do cultural heritage institutions and their practitioners do and how is this changing in the big data era? Through a series of interviews with cultural heritage practitioners and an online survey, we investigated the handling of knowledge complexity, changes in archival practice and data use, how data is shared, and also hidden, as part of the historical record. We also considered the barriers to the application of big data computational method to the historical record.
As an ICT-programme ‘sister project,’ the primary purpose of the project is to inform future research and policy in the ICT space. We are still committed to sharing results widely to inform philosophical debates in both the technical sphere as well as in the digital humanities.