Project of Excellence: Digital Humanities applied to Foreign Languages and Literatures (2018-2022)

As part of the Departments of Excellence initiative, The Italian National Agency for the Evaluation of Universities and Research Institutes (ANVUR) has awarded a 6-million-euro grant to the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at UNIVR for the realization of an interdisciplinary development project, which will allow the Department to become a center of excellence and a laboratory for experimentation, both for research and for teaching, at national and international level, in the field of digital humanities applied to foreign languages and literatures.

The project focuses on the conservation and dissemination of cultural heritage in its historical and archival dimensions as well as in its linguistic manifestations, thus innovatively enhancing digital methodologies in such a way as to broaden and better implement the research fields in the philological-literary and linguistic fields.

The development of the project, which is unique at national level, will also allow the Department to better respond, on the one hand, to the needs of the territory and to the growing demand for the implementation of wide-ranging digital skills, on the other.

Linguistic-cultural Heritage & Digital Humanities

The Linguistic-cultural Heritage & Digital Humanities project will focus on the analysis of linguistic data using computer software to:

  • identify phenomena of linguistic cultural contact, with specific reference to the relationships between modern European and oriental languages;

  • to analyze specialized discourses (e.g. journalistic, legal, political, economic and tourism ones) to prepare dictionaries, glossaries and terminological guides necessary for teaching and for industry experts in the various reference languages, as well as for the common user;

  • study linguistic minorities, safeguard them and enhance their heritage.


Literary-philological Heritage & Digital Humanities

The literary-philological area will focus on the conservation, enhancement and accessibility of European cultural heritage, through the digitization of documents, including ancient ones, along with the identification of an author’s style through automated systems.
This will allow for digital knowledge dissemination in favor of social innovation, in the awareness that the cooperation between the academy and the so-called GLAM institutions (i.e. Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums) plays a key role in enhancing the cultural heritage of the whole society.


Spaces and Digital Platforms

The “Spaces and Digital Platforms” project is responsible for creating the IT platforms and technologically equipped classrooms to support the teaching and research activities of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures in the Digital Humanities field.


Didactics & Digital Humanities

Didactics will become one of the main research areas of our Excellence Project. In particular, the “Didactics & Digital Humanities” Unit will analyse how digital resources may be employed in teaching Foreign Languages and Foreign Literatures and Cultures to create new and innovative courses in Teacher Education (for the secondary school) and Languages for Specific Purposes (with reference to the domain-specific vocabulary and skills for the business world). Particular attention will be devoted to blended learning (which integrates the pedagogical experience in frontal teaching with flexible distance teaching and social networking) within an Accessible Learning Environment.