Associate Director, Textbase Development
Scholarly Technology Group
The Women Writers Project (WWP) at Brown University is a text encoding research project whose publication, Women Writers Online, is a scholarly digital resource focusing on early women’s writing in English. The WWP is also one of the few small scholarly projects that has achieved financial success through digital publication. An early adopter of the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) Guidelines, the WWP has spent over a decade researching and documenting methods of intensive text encoding to support scholarly textual research.
While most digital library projects create very lightly-encoded collections to support basic retrieval, as digital research tools and their users become more sophisticated it is becoming clear that higher-quality text encoding is essential to support the digital scholarship of the future. With substantial grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, the WWP is now engaged in a two-year project to publish its documentation and methods in the form of an encoding guide for scholars and scholarly projects, to complement the TEI Guidelines and assist scholarly projects in developing encoding practices that match their own needs. This briefing will review the WWP’s progress to date and examine scholarly research needs as they affect the design of digital resources.