What is Humlab?
Humlab is a meeting place for the humanities, culture and
information technology at Umeå University in Sweden. We do
education, research and various kinds of development work relating
to digital humanities, as well as digital culture and innovation.
We work with students, faculty, industry relations, artists and
Are you a place?
Yes, much of
the work is channelled through our physical and digital
environments. We have two labs in Umeå - one on the main campus and
one on the Arts Campus. We also have offices for our staff in the
How long does it take to walk from one lab to the
About 15 minutes if you walk reasonably quickly. Walking is
recommended. Finding parking can be a nuisance.
When was Humlab started?
It was started in the late 1990s, and was formally made into an
"academic unit" by the University Board in 2000.
What can I do in Humlab as a
participate in different kinds of activities (seminars, workshops,
courses, etc.). Most activities are open to anyone. If you are a
student, your study programme may run courses together with Humlab.
Researchers, students and artists may work on their own or
Humlab-run projects in the lab. We are happy to discuss new
projects, digital components of educational programmes or possible
research targets. But above all, Humlab is a place to be, to
just hang out and meet other people. Just come by!
What kind of people work in Humlab?
Programmers, humanities researchers (from art history to
ethnology), communication managers, engineers, coordinators,
project managers and others.
Why do you have so many screens?
Screens are in some ways an interface to a computationally
inflected world. They hold historical, material and cultural
significance (just consider windows, paintings or medieval
churches, or the number of computer and mobile screens used in
cafés). Screens can also be integrated with various kinds of
interaction technology. There are a number of screen installations
in Humlab that challenge the conventional use of screens (in terms
of orientation, number of screens, placement), including the
screenscape in Humlab (11 screens around the room) and the floor
screen in Humlab-X. And although screens are an important part of
our infrastructure, we have many other kinds of technology and
I am thinking of spending extended time in Umeå/coming
to Umeå as a student/postdoc/applying for a job. Where can I find
more information about the place (Humlab, Umeå University, the city
This blog entry
(from December 2012) provides quite a bit of information and a few
links. It was published in conjunction with a search. An
older piece, written by then postdoc Jenna Ng (now at the
University of York), can be found
here. The municipality of Umeå also publishes information:
and Umeå University's central webpages might also help: www.umu.se/english/ Tourist information can be
found here: http://www.visitumea.se/Default.aspx?lang=en
What resources are available in Humlab?
Creative spaces, several virtual/digital platforms, workstations
(powerful, both PC and MAC), physical computing gear, interactive
floor screen, interaction screens (11 screens), sound studio etc.
for more information.
What is the digital humanities?
Not a simple question, but simply put, our take is that digital
humanities is what is between humanities and the digital. The
digital is a tool, study object and medium. Humlab has
a commitment to the digital humanities, of course, but
really our operation is about the humanities, culture and
I know you stream/broadcast seminars. Is there an
Yes, check out this website out. We have 150+