James Baker

Curator, Digital Research team, The British Library


I am an historian who specialises in late-Georgian British history and the patterns by which technologies were used, the contexts of their creation, and the networks that created and sustained them. As a curator I reapply these skills to critically examine collections of modern personal digital media the British Library holds and the forensic software we use to curate, interpret, and preserve them.


I am a Curator in the Digital Research team at the British Library, Historian of Britain in the long-eighteenth century, and Honorary Research Fellow at the School of History, University of Kent, where I also completed my doctoral research in 2010. My research interests include printed illustration, graphic satire, the history of the book, spatial politics, protest, historic catalogues and reference works for heritage collections, and the history of technology. My current research uses a combination of corpus level analytics and close study of objects and documentary evidence to explore on one hand how eighteenth and nineteenth century printed satirical illustrations were made and sold and on the other the use of personal digital media in the late-twentieth and early-twenty first century political, academic, and creative life.

In 2012-2013 I held a Postdoctoral Fellowship with the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies of British Art (Yale University). I convene the Digital History seminar at the Institute of History Research, co-supervise a Digital History PhD with the University of Sheffield, sit on the Advisory Board for HistoryLab+, am Review Editor for *Frontiers in Digital Humanities*, and supervise BSc and MSc projects at University College London Computer Science.

I have published widely on late-Georgian satire, contributed to the open and collaborative book *The Programming Historian*, co-edited a handbook on Open Access Monographs for JISC, and written and presented on the intersections between libraries, data, and infrastructure. I am a passionate advocate of open scholarship and open data. I seek open access venues for my published work and I release slides, transcripts of public talks, and notes taken at public events under generous open licences.


Check out contributions by and mentions of James Baker on www.software.ac.uk