[GeoHumanities SIG] Advice on Job Description for Digital History / Geospatial Project

Dalmau, Michelle Denise mdalmau at indiana.edu
Mon Nov 25 04:39:43 CET 2013

Hi, all,

I am consulting on a digital history project by Prof. Konstantin Dierks from Indiana University.  Prof. Dierks received a modest grant in support of building a digital exhibit counterpart to a physical exhibit on the Globalization of the United States between 1775 and 1861.   We will be using Omeka for the digital exhibit, but there’s a geospatial and temporal mapping component based on data that Prof. Dierks has mined and charted form numerous bibliographic sources.  These data points represent several layers or facets (e.g., diplomatic missions, military deployments, commerce, etc.) based on at least one if not several georeferenced historical maps.

We created a quick and dirty prototype using Simile Exhibit just to get a sense of how we’d plot the spatial and temporal data points (http://www-dev.dlib.indiana.edu/projects/global/), but we have also been experimenting with choropleth maps using Google Fusion.  Finally, we are in the midst of creating a Neatline prototype (though we are currently forcing Neatline to do things it was not intended to do, but with lots of great help from the Neatline crew) to see if Neatline is the thing that brings it all together.  However, not knowing whether Neatline is the best solution for the project (recently learned about Leaflet and I’m intrigued) and our need to hire someone to actually do real work, not just experiment, for Prof. Dierks, ASAP (grant nearing end), do you have advice on what a job post would look like (or any to share) for someone doing this work?

A quick online search reveals by and large GIS Specialist type jobs, and while some of that expertise will be important (we have none in our group and as a result we’ve led Prof. Dierks astray :-)), we are really looking for someone who can take an existing, open source, “lighter-weight” framework and adapt it for this project.  It seems as though the emphasis is really on tech know-how which can vary depending on the platform, but how do we balance that with the requisite geo know-how needed, for example, to install geoserver and georeference historical maps and batch geocode thousands of rows of data (relatively small data set)?

I appreciate your guidance (and sample job posts that you have crafted to fill this very need)!


Michelle Dalmau, Interim Head
Digital Collections Services
Indiana University
Herman B Wells Library
1320 East 10th Street, Rm W501
Bloomington, Indiana 47405
Web:  http://michelledalmau.com
Twitter:  @mdalmau

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