Nine groups of related tasks, so-called work packages, are working together in order to realize ReIReS.
WP1 – Management
The project management WP, lead by Fscire, ensures the setting up and running of the whole project as well as of its singular parts according to the expected timing. The WP ensures the accomplishment of the activities of the project, as well as the delivery of its results coherently with the budgetary limits and with the full cooperation and consent of the partners.
The main objectives of the management of ReIReS are:
- leading the project to scholarly, technical, organisational and financial achievement;
- granting the full cooperation between the partners of the consortium;
- establishing and implementing all the management bodies and ensuring their coordinated and cooperative work;
- monitoring the progress of the whole project and of the single WPs and managing contingencies;
- identifying risks and implementing effective control measures;
- granting the accomplishment of all the requirements of the Grant Agreement (GA) in a timely manner, including
appropriate communication and reporting to the European Commission.
WP2 – Establishing and Developing
Stable Networking Activities
WP2, lead by the University of Warsaw, develops the capability of the starting community to answer properly to the need of the users by operating an effective and stable integration of the different sources, resources, facilities and expertise of ReIReS. More in detail, the WP focuses on three aims:
- Integration of user services. The integration of the different services is the crucial precondition to enable to the users to take full advantage from the access to ReIReS. This integration aims to create a coherent synergy between the sources, resources, facilities and expertise of the consortium, making available to scholars multiple complementary approaches to academic research in historical religious studies. It represents the framework within which it is possible to implement the groundbreaking innovations of ReIReS’s TNA (WP3 and WP4) as well as of its training activities (WP5).
- Models for training activities. WP2 provides a series of tools and instruments to develop the training activities (WP5) in a more effective way and in accordance to a common general standard. This NA analyses and evaluates the experience of different models of training activities in the field of historical religious studies in order to create an appropriate paradigm for the whole consortium, which is developed and kept updated according to the different experiences.
- Integration of digital management. WP2 integrates the digital data management of ReIReS according to a common protocol, which grants the preservation, use and sharing of the digital data produced by the activity of the consortium. This data management plan (DMP) supports the processes of dissemination among ReIReS partners and the future development of the starting community in terms of technological innovation.
WP3 – Transnational Access to
TASC (Transnational Access to Special Collections), led by JGU Mainz, is a unique form of transnational access, which offers the possibility to have access to a series of special collectionsof documents, manuscripts and rare books concerning historical religious studies across Europe.
TASC is abplatform which integrates ten distributed facilities located in outstanding European research centres and universities:
- TASC_1: UNISOFIA, Center for Slavonic and Byzantine Studies ‘Prof. Ivan Dujcev’
- TASC_2: KU Leuven Central Library, Manuscripts & Rare Books.
- TASC_3: KU Leuven, Maurits Sabbe Library, Rare and Precious Books
- TASC_4: UNIHAM, University Library, Special Collections
- TASC_5: UNIMAINZ, Wissenschaftliche Stadtbibliothek
- TASC_6: UNIMAINZ, Gesangbucharchiv Mainz
- TASC_7: UNIMAINZ, Bereichsbibliothek Theologie
- TASC_8: EPHE, Collections patrimoniales, Collections of papyruses
- TASC_9: EPHE, Collections patrimoniales, Ethnographic Collection
- TASC_10: EPHE, Collections patrimoniales, Shiite Collection
TASC integrates materials and documents not just concerning the history of Christianity in Europe; more broadly speaking it gives access to an integrated system of materials which includes some of the most relevant collections of Jewish and Muslim documents and books, granting the effective possibility to attract the 730895-2 ReiReS Part B 45 attention of new users, as well as the public interest, particularly for studies concerning interreligious and interconfessional dialogue throughout history.
Services currently offered by the infrastructure: TASC gives access to ten collections of documents, manuscripts and rare books linked to five institutions: UNISOFIA, KU Leuven, UNIHAM, UNIMAINZ, EPHE. All these institutions provide the access to their archives of analytical and technical data. These data consist of documentation on each object that they preserved, i.e. the complete bibliography concerning the documents, manuscripts and rare books preserved in their collections. TASC providers grant also the access to a vast range of digital databases and tools as instrument to deal with the study of the ancient documents. This set of digital tools includes the databases of the partners of ReIReS which are available through the restricted area of ReIReS’s website.
WP4 – Transnational Access to
TAAD, led by KU Leuven, is a unique form of transnational access, which offers the possibility to have access to a series of archival documents (papers, letters, audio collections, video collections) concerning historical religious studies across Europe.
Task is a platform which integrates four distributed facilities located in outstanding European research centres and universities:
- TAAD_1: FSCIRE, Archive
- TAAD_2: KU Leuven, University Archive
- TAAD_3: KU Leuven, Maurits Sabbe Library, Archive for the Study of Vatican II
- TAAD_4: UNIMAINZ, Martinusbibliothek
All these archives give access to collections of documents, papers, epistolary, images, audio and video documents which represent the largest integrated patrimony of archival for historical religious studies particularly in the fields of modern and contemporary religious history. Their integration in TAAD grants the possibility to open the use of their collections for researches within larger academic audiences, supporting a positive outreach of this TNA activity of the project. These archives and their collections are considered as the subject of a proper TNA activity since they are deeply connected to a more specific use in research activities. The materials collected in TAAD_1 and TAAD_3 concern more closely contemporary religious history, with a specific focus on some major events such as Vatican II, while TAAD_2 and TAAD_4 offers a large collection of materials concerning religious history from early modern period to contemporary days. Considering these specificities of the archival collections and the common features of archives in terms of rules and limitations to access to documents, a specific WP provides access to them.
Services currently offered by the infrastructure: TAAD gives access to four collections of documents linked to three institutions: FSCIRE, KU Leuven, and UNIMAINZ. All these institutions provide the access to their archives of analytical and technical data. These data consist of documentation on each object that they preserved, i.e. the complete bibliography concerning the documents preserved in their collections and the studies that already make use of the documents preserved in these archives. TAAD providers grant also the access to a vast range of digital databases and tools as instrument to deal with the study of the ancient documents.
WP5 – Training
WP5, led by the Theological University of Apeldoorn, provides and coordinates all training components that are essential for acquiring the skills necessary to properly and fruitfully make use of the services of ReIReS. The WP is responsible for the overall coordination of teaching activities, which include:
- the development and support of new e-learning tools.
- the training to store, analyse and share digital data.
- make scholars familiar with special, unknown or remote collections.
- support for students and young post-doctoral researchers to take part in the training activities by offering grants for training and travel.
- the organisation and promotion of the exchange of existing skills and knowledge in order to use this for training purposes.
The goal of WP5 is to initiate, improve and professionalize the training of scholars that make use of ReIReS’s services, and to train them to train others to the same approach. The training aims also to collect the users’ feedbacks and to share them among the partners of the consortium.
WP6 – Resource Discovery and
Linking for Religious Studies
WP6, led by KU Leuven,:
- addresses the growing need of scholars to discover large sets of data, regardless of their location or the metadata models, classifications and languages used to describe them;
- provides public and commercial database providers a way to make their databases more visible and discoverable, increasing traffic to their systems.
WP6 achieves this by:
- Creating a domain specific metadata exchange model for providing a fully documented and standardised way of sharing metadata between platforms and people.
- Investigating the possibilities of creating a combination of a data hub and a data exploration and discovery service: While data discovery brings a new and innovative approach in integrating different humanities repositories, it is important to provide both options. Many of the older and less open technologies still in use in the humanities are lacking a standard data exchange mechanisms such as API. A singular choice for data discovery would thus lead to the lockout of certain data providers and important research material.
- Investigating the possibility of creating a network of interlinked concept schemes or ontologies such as classifications and subject heading lists to allow semantic linking and easy retrieval of multilingual sources.
- Testing and validating this approach with a Proof of Concept (PoC) with a core selection of datasets suitable for testing the two data delivery cases, being data deposit into the data hub and live data discovery by means of API, at an early stage of the project.
- An iterative development and deployment work plan with an early release for the testing and validation activities of the PoC. Testing and validation then proceeds in parallel with the deployment and development of the new technical and functional features, which leads to two more releases of the data repository and discovery system in order to achieve a firsts generation release of the environment by the end of the project.
WP7 – History of Religious Studies
in the Age of Big-Data: Developing
WP7, led by CNR, provides an appropriate joint research activity (JRA2), whose aim is to consider the impact of the integrated system of services that ReIReS offers to scholars and of their use on the domain of historical religious studies. JRA2 ‘History of Religious Studies in the Age of Big-Data: Developing New Methodologies’ is a pilot project based on the achievement of three major objectives:
- Defining the feature of a domain: JRA2 evaluates of the most relevant innovation in terms of research methodologies in the different disciplines involved in historical religious studies, as well as of the different methodological approach that ReIReS users assume or develop in the researches they make using both TSAC and TAAD access;
- Reframing knowledge and disciplines: JRA2 reconsiders the proper epistemological and methodological features of each discipline involved in historical religious studies from the holistic perspective proper of ReIReS project. Each discipline is taken up as a part of a larger domain and it is considered not only with respect to its own epistemological features but also from the development that comes from its interaction with other disciplines. JRA2 takes up the data and the documents as the basic subject of research and thus integrates the different disciplines according to their capability to contribute to the use of data and documents to understand religious issues and increase the quality and quantity of knowledge on this domain;
- Integration of different methodologies: dealing with different data and sources and with the respective appropriate research methods is the basis to develop an effective integration between them within a coherent epistemological framework. Starting from a careful evaluation of the experience of the users of ReIReS services, JRA2 elaborates the features of a more general level of research activity, which is capable to organically include the whole range of discipline of the historical religious studies.
WP8 – Dissemination and Exploitation
of Results, Communication
WP8, led by Refo500, develops an appropriate strategy and activities for the exploitation, dissemination and communication of the results of the project. ReIReS’s ambition is to deeply impact on the understanding of religious issues within both the academic audience and other social, political, cultural and religious audiences. In order to do so, WP8 ensures the maximal dissemination of the results. Moreover, the WP focuses on the definition of an effective exploitation strategy, which is expected to grant the use of the project results far beyond the chronological limits of ReIReS, to foster virtuous process of knowledge transfer among the partners and to encourage knowledge transfer among all potential stakeholders. In doing so the WP aims:
- To raise awareness within participants, target groups and the European society at large about the existence of ReIRes, its objectives, progress and results.
- To ensure that the project’s results reach the various target groups and the European Society, thus stimulating a dialogue about religion.
- To update stakeholders with news and improvements related to ReIRes.
- To support ReIRes as an innovative and groundbreaking research infrastructure in religious studies.
- To show the outcome of ReIRes and its relevance in redefining the epistemology of religious studies and in offering innovative and groundbreaking knowledge to academic and non-academic audiences.
WP9 – Sustainability
As a starting community, ReIReS has the ambition of being the first step towards the creation of a stable European Research Infrastructure in the domain of historical religious studies. In order to fulfil this ambition, WP9 provides the definition of a proper strategy to grant the sustainability of the project by focusing both on the opportunities given by the European research framework and the capability of the project to attract funds from other sources.
WP9, led by Fscire, provides a careful analysis of the legal frameworks that can be considered for the sustainability of the project by defining the proper way to fully insert ReIReS within the European system of research infrastructures, which has been built in the last years. An application to the European Strategy Forum for Research Infrastructures (ESFRI), to the upcoming call, is a serious possibility for a proper development of the consortium in the direction of the creation of an ERIC.
Due to its focus on historical religious studies, ReIReS is capable to attract the interest of different subjects not only in the field of research but also in politics and business by looking into international organisations and foundations as well as into religious and non-confessional communities and organisations. In this sense, the starting community shows a strong academic, organisational, and managerial profile; and is therefore capable to attract funds and investments form different subjects, both public and private.
The sustainability of ReIReS can be achieved through actions directed at:
- Defining the possible legal framework for the sustainability of the project in terms of the creation of a European RI in historical religious studies.
- Engaging representatives of hosting countries to support the research and academic institutions involved in the project. – Creating proper and durable relations between the starting community and the subjects that are interested in having access both to its sources, resources, facilities and expertise and to its results.
- The SP and its progressive fulfilment grant the capability of ReIReS to sustain its activities in a medium and long-term perspective and to enlarge the interest and expectation of the creation of a European RI in historical religious studies in different areas and at an international level.