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Rens Bod

Rens Bod is Professor of Digital Humanities and Director of the Center for Digital Humanities at the University of Amsterdam. He investigates the humanities from both computational and historical perspectives.

His computational work covers natural language cognition, computational musicology, digital aesthetics and computational literary studies. In the field of digital humanities, he coordinates over 20 public-private partnerships in virtually all subfields of the humanities. He is one of the main architects of the so-called data-oriented parsing model, a general machine learning technique for attributing structure to humanities data. He was a recipient of an advanced research fellowship (UK), a personal academy fellowship (KNAW) and personal Vidi and Vici fellowships (NWO).

His historical work focuses on the comparative history of the humanities from a world-wide perspective. He is a founding editor of the journal History of Humanities and the initiator of the conference series The Making of the Humanities. He is also editor-in-chief of Brill Open Humanities. His books include Beyond Grammar (1998), Probabilistic Linguistics (2003), Data-Oriented Parsing (2003) and De Vergeten Wetenschappen (The Forgotten Sciences) (2010), and he co-edited three volumes on the comparative history of the humanities, The Making of the Humanities I, II and III (2010, 2012, 2014). His most recent monograph is A New History of the Humanities: The Search for Principles and Patterns from Antiquity to the Present (OUP, 2013).


  • Professor of Digital Humanities and Director of the Center for Digital Humanities, University of Amsterdam