About This Site

Thank you for visiting this website. It is meant to be a resource page for humanities analytics teaching and research. The site is owned and operated by Matthew Lavin. I am an assistant professor of humanities analytics in the data analytics program at Denison University.

What is humanities analytics, you ask? Well, that may be a matter of some debate, but I would describe it as a close relative of cultural analytics. You might think of it as the intersection of computational methods with humanities research questions, or data-driven humanities inquiry, or quantitative research for the humanities, or some combination of all of those things. Ultimately, I think humanities analytics is a subcategory of cultural analytics because cultural analytics includes practitioners in the social and natural sciences.

In "There Will be Numbers," Andrew Piper describes cultural analytics as a kind of reciprocal relationship. He writes, "It would be wrong, and intellectually limiting, to see this undertaking solely as computer science applied to culture. Cultural analytics requires a wholesale re-thinking of both of these categories." This distinction, I think, is crucial.

The notions of cultural analytics and humanities analytics are also related to digital humanities (DH), which I take to be a much broader term describing a range of intersections between the humanities and digital/computational culture. Everything from "distant reading" to "the ramifications of Youtube," to quote a former colleague of mine. The "big tent" concept in DH has a lot of merit; after all there are many stakeholders in DH who share a pedagogical and scholarly ecosystem. At the same time, distinctions in and among DH have value. They shape expectations and help you find panels at conferences.

On this site, you will find:


Online materials for data analytics and humanities analytics courses (many of which are works in progress)

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Notes, commentary, conference papers, and work-in-progress related to humanities analytics teaching and research

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Some links to other things, like my CV and Denison's Data Analytics program (see above)