DHARMA Kickoff Meeting in Berlin (HU), September 2019

The Humboldt University of Berlin (HU) had the honour of hosting the DHARMA Kick-off Meeting from September 16 to 21, 2019.

In the autumnal beauty of Berlin our international team with members from France, Germany, India, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Hungary, Indonesia, Cambodia, Japan, Great Britain, Austria, and the USA came together and engaged in a fruitful academic exchange.

After the inaugural addresses of Prof. Dr. Peter A. Frensch (Vice President for Research, HU) and Ms. Malathi Rao Vadapalli from the Indian embassy the meeting started with presentations on the different subjects that the members of the project are currently working on or are planning to tackle soon.

Regarding the technical implementation of the project the kick-off meeting provided the possibility of giving the final touch to the concepts and workflow that had been established so far.

In this context specific questions regarding the peculiarities of the individual philologies and epigraphic traditions and their seamless integration into a handy and powerful mark-up were effectively discussed.

Besides further detailed information on specific aspects of digital humanities (i.a. canalizing and sharing information) participants of already existing digitization projects (Siddham database, Satavahana Inscriptions Database) shared their experiences and contributed their technical expertise to these specific issues.

One core element of the kick-off meeting were the comprehensive EpiDoc sessions that were provided by the EpiDoc “gurus” Gabriel Bodard, Tom Elliot and Simona Stoyanova. The epigraphists and manuscriptologists had thereupon the opportunity to form separate groups where specific matter-related questions could be discussed.

Last but not least, the PhD candidates had the opportunity to present their own work and could profit from constructive criticism from the more advanced scholars.

We are especially pleased to say that apart from academic synergy “interpersonal synergy” is also prevalent in the DHARMA project. The constant interdisciplinary exchange and flow of information will yield close cooperation on all levels.


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