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Network Detroit 2019 Call for Proposals

Theme: Access

Submissions are now closed, thanks to all who submitted! Conference acceptances will be emailed around August 5, 2019. The conference schedule will be posted by September 1, 2019 on For further information, please visit the website or send an email to

Conference date:
Proposals due:
Acceptances sent:

Friday, September 27, 2019
Wayne State University, Detroit, MI
Extended to July 21, 2019
August 5, 2019

We invite proposals for the 7th annual Network Detroit Conference on Digital Humanities (DH) at Wayne State University, a research university in the heart of midtown Detroit. The goal of Network Detroit remains to bring together regional practitioners, academics, coders, humanists, students, and community members who work on digital projects related to human questions and concerns for a one-day learning and networking event. This year’s conference theme is “Access.”

Access is inclusive. For this conference, access signals the fundamental rights of human life: clean air and water, safe housing, education, health and wellbeing, and income opportunities. Access can also reflect more ephemeral privileges we have as humans, such as the availability of Internet, information, emotional and professional support structures, as well as career, professional, and personal opportunities. Access can be a yes/no proposition, but might also be a door that can be closed or opened wide, with varying degrees of openness along the way. Access, accessibility, open access…. How are these rights and privileges made manifest to us through systems, interfaces, infrastructures, information, data, and projects–all of which might involve digital or networked methods through which humans interact? How does our conception of access change the way we produce content for other humans? How does accessibility form a starting point for designing projects as opposed to being an add-on or afterthought? How can we reshape our notion of access to broaden inclusivity and diversity in our digital landscapes? How does limits on digital access prevent full participation by communities, stakeholders, and audiences? And how can digital access change that level of participation? What is the role of data and its accessibility to the public mean in terms of the health and well-being of a community?

In exploring ideas of access, we encourage proposals from a wide variety of academics and practitioners on topics including but not limited to:

  • Digital technologies or methods (e.g., mapping, text-mining)
  • Digital project design/management
  • Data collection and resources
  • Institutional partnerships and project-based collaborations that use digital methods
  • Community-based online media practices
  • Digital representation
  • Digital and print collections and archives
  • Digital pedagogy

Successful proposals will demonstrate a connection to the theme of the conference, namely how access is represented in/through digital (humanities) projects/tools/methods/theories. While not strictly a humanities-discipline conference, Network Detroit does aim to bring the human forward in answering questions about the impact of the digital on our daily existence. If you are a researcher or practitioner from outside of the humanities, we encourage you to submit, or email the conference organizers prior to submitting to query your topic. Full reviews/responses will not be possible, but we will let you know if we think the topic is too far afield.

Proposals should be 250-300 words. You will also need to indicate your name, names of any additional presenter(s), email contact, institutional affiliations, and which presentation format you plan on:

  • Lightning talks (5 minutes)
  • Papers/Presentation (15 minutes)
  • Panels (3+ people; 60 minutes)
  • Posters
  • Workshops (60–90 minutes)