Zeit.shift – A citizen humanities project for the preservation, development and communication of the cultural and textual heritage of the historical region of Tyrol


The aim of the project is the cross-border institutional cooperation for the sustainable preservation, development and communication of the cultural text heritage of the historical region Tyrol. However, the relevant holdings of written cultural assets of the region Tyrol are dispersed over the different parts of the area and are not available in any singular physical or digital library in their entirety. So far, the documents have only been partially digitised and are only insufficiently known and accessible to the public. Through cross-border digitisation and communication strategies in
close cooperation between the Dr. Friedrich Tessmann Library, the University and Regional Library Tyrol, and Eurac Research, these physically and regionally scattered text collections are for the first time brought together virtually in a single web platform and processed in a user-oriented manner using computer linguistic approaches. The example of historical newspapers are prototypically used as they are imminently threatened by decay. A main focus of the project is the active involvement of the public. Already in the project phase, citizens are invited to actively participate in the text indexing through online annotations of the text material. Thus, the users are introduced to historical text sources and made familiar with their own cultural heritage. The common web platform provides the basis for the cooperation with other institutions beyond the duration of the Project.

Leadpartners: Abteilung Deutsche Kultur in der Südtiroler Landesverwaltung – Landesbibliothek Dr. Friedrich Teßmann

Partners: Eurac Research – Institut für Angewandte Sprachforschung, Universität Innsbruck – Universitäts- und Landesbibliothek Tirol


Associated Partners: Euregio Tirol-Südtirol-Trentino, Abteilung Tiroler Landesarchiv der Tiroler Landesregierung, Tiroler Landesmuseen, Südtiroler Kulturinstitut, Tiroler Bildungsforum, Südtiroler Landesarchiv der Autonomen Provinz Bozen-Südtirol, Bibliotheksverband Südtirol

Project duration: October 2020 – October 2022

Budget: 658.000 € (443.000 € UE, 56.000 € national funding, 159.000 € own funds)

1. Digitisation of Tyrolean historical newspapers
2. Development and implementation of a citizen science initiative to curate and enrich the digitised newspapers
3. Computational linguistic processing of the digitised newspapers to improve data search and visualisation options
4. Digital access to the complete collection of newspapers via a web platform to support research and education

Get involved!
Get involved and help us locate and tag historical advertisements on Historypin in order to reconstruct the commercial landscape of early 20th century Tyrol. Many shops from those times still exist today!

For more information https://all4ling.eurac.edu/zeitshift/
Feel free to contact us: zeitshift@tessmann.it