Associate Vice-President, Research Oversight and Analysis
Professor of History
Ian Milligan (he/him) is Associate Vice-President, Research Oversight and Analysis at the University of Waterloo, where he is also professor of history. In this service role within the Office of the Vice-President, Research and International, Milligan provides campus leadership for research oversight and compliance, and is the campus research integrity lead.
Milligan also helps to lead the Safeguarding Research portfolio, oversees the Office of Research Ethics, supports research health & safety, serves as a lead on emergency issues related to research (including COVID research response), and helps to coordinate bibliometrics activities. Finally, Milligan co-led the campus-wide Research Data Management strategy and is currently working on its implementation.
Alongside this service portfolio, Milligan maintains an active research agenda. Milligan’s primary research focus is on how historians can use web archives, as well as the impact of digital sources on historical practice more generally. He is author of three sole-authored books: The Transformation of Historical Research in the Digital Age (2022), History in the Age of Abundance (2019), and Rebel Youth (2014). Milligan also co-authored Exploring Big Historical Data (2015, with Shawn Graham and Scott Weingart) and edited the SAGE Handbook of Web History (2018, with Niels Brügger). Milligan was principal investigator of the Archives Unleashed project between 2017 and 2023 (the project lives on as an Internet Archive service).
In 2016, he was awarded the Canadian Society for Digital Humanities Outstanding Early Career Award and in 2019 he received the Arts Excellence in Research award from the University of Waterloo. In 2020, recognizing his track record of research and advocacy, the Association of Canadian Archivists awarded Milligan the Honourary Archivist Award. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society.
Milligan is currently co-editor of Internet Histories and was a co-program chair of the ACM/IEEE Joint Conference on Digital Libraries. He has an extensive interdisciplinary service record, sitting on selection committees for multiple granting agencies as well as sitting on the steering committee for the ACM/IEEE Joint Conference on Digital Libraries. At Waterloo, Milligan has served on the University Senate as well as the Board of Governors.
He lives in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada with his partner, son, and daughter.
You can read his full CV here.
PhD in History, 2012
MA in History, 2007
BA (Hon) in History, 2006
Pre-November 2019 posts can be found at http://ianmilli.wordpress.com.
Historians make research queries on Google, ProQuest, and the HathiTrust. They garner information from keyword searches, carried out across millions of documents, their research shaped by algorithms they rarely understand. Historians often then visit archives in whirlwind trips marked by thousands of digital photographs, subsequently explored on computer monitors from the comfort of their offices. They may then take to social media or other digital platforms, their work shaped through these new forms of pre- and post-publication review. Almost all aspects of the historian’s research workflow have been transformed by digital technology. In other words, all historians – not just Digital Historians – are implicated in this shift. The Transformation of Historical Research in the Digital Age equips historians to be self-conscious practitioners by making these shifts explicit and exploring their long-term impact. This title is also available as Open Access on Cambridge Core.
Believe it or not, the 1990s are history. As historians turn to study this period and beyond, they will encounter a historical record that is radically different from what has ever existed before. Old websites, social media, blogs, photographs, and videos are all part of the massive quantities of digital information that technologists, librarians, archivists, and organizations such as the Internet Archive have been collecting for the past three decades.
The SAGE Handbook of Web History marks the first comprehensive review of this subject to date. Its editors emphasise the two different forms of its study: the use of the web as an historical resource, and the web as an object of study in its own right. Bringing together all the existing knowledge of the field, with an interdisciplinary focus and an international scope, this is an incomparable resource for historians and students alike.
The Digital Humanities have flourished at a moment when digital big data is becoming easily available. Yet there is a gap in the scholarly literature on the ways these data can be explored to construct cultural heritage knowledge, for both research and in our teaching and learning. We are on the cusp of needing to grasp big data approaches to do our work, whether it’s understanding the underlying algorithms at work in our search engines, or needing to design and use our own tools to process comparatively large amounts of information. This book fills that gap, and in its live-writing approach, will set the direction for the conversation into the future.
While university-based activists combined youth culture with a new brand of radicalism to form the New Left, young workers were pressing for wildcat strikes and defying their aging union leaders in a wave of renewed militancy that swept the country. In Rebel Youth, Ian Milligan looks at these converging currents, demonstrating convincingly how they were part of a single youth phenomenon. With no fewer than seventy interviews complementing the extensive use of archival records, this book reveals a youth current that, despite regional differences, spanned an intellectual network from Halifax to Victoria that read the same publications, consulted the same thinkers, and found inspiration in the same shared ideas.
This project seeks to identify the cultural, intellectual, and theoretical factors during the early 1990s which contributed to the …
Archives Unleashed aims to make petabytes of historical internet content accessible to scholars and others interested in researching …
Supported by the IMLS LB21 program, the CEDWARC project develops a continuing education curriculum and teaches library and archive …
This project will help train highly-qualified personnel (HQP) in the humanities to prepare for the digital deluge that is already …
Due to my appointment as Associate Vice-President, Research Oversight and Analysis, I am not currently teaching.
For a full list of talks and presentations, please see my CV.