Project Goals

From May 2014 to April 2016, the HDC project ran as a design study for the creation of a sustainable, digital research data center for the humanities. Since summer 2017, the HDC is a permanent institution at the Research Campus Göttingen. The main tasks of the HDC are long-term preservation of research data (eg critical editions, multimedia objects or 3D models) and, if legally possible, their provision for subsequent use. Important projects in the field of humanities, such as DARIAH and TextGrid, in which the GWDG is also involved, already use considerable data in their research environments, which require a joint research data service. Therefore, the HDC is a central data interface for virtual research environments in the humanities.

The design study covered the following topics:


The subproject “Service” was used to determine the requirements of future users of the research data center and, based on this, the service offer. To ensure a sustainable service, requirements management has been integrated in order to be able to continually adapt the utilization possibilities to the changing requirements of the user groups.


In this project part the previously defined services were implemented technically. The basic infrastructure, security infrastructure, middleware and interfaces as well as tools and user interfaces in the front-end area were developed.


The focus of this subproject was the organizational framework. The development of a viable business model, networking with the specialist sciences, information on the offers as well as the conception of consulting and training offerings were the main focus.

GWDG’s Role in the project

The GWDG chaired the project and build up the technically required infrastructure to ensure the special requirements for the availability and referenceability of research data. In addition, the GWDG worked o questions of certification and sustainability. After the two-year design phase, the HDC has been institutionalized as research center for humanities from August 1, 2016. On July 27, 2016, the Director of the Lower Saxony State and University Library Göttingen (SUB) and the Managing Director of the GWDG signed the Founding Manifesto. Both parties commit themselves to sustainably operate the HDC, expand it, and network it with other research data centers in the humanities.

Project Partners

During the Project Phase

  • Academy of Sciences at Göttingen
  • Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences
  • Konrad-Zuse-Center for Information Technology Berlin
  • Max Planck Institute for the Study of Multireligious and Multiethnic Societies
  • Max Planck Institute for the History of Science (associate partner)
  • Lower Saxony State and University Library Göttingen

GWDG was responsible for the consortium management.

Of the Institution HDC at the Göttingen Research Campus

  • Lower Saxony State and University Library Göttingen
  • GWDG

Additional Information

  • Bingert, Sven; Buddenbohm, Stefan, Die HDC-Anwendungskonservierung - ein Dienst zur Archivierung und Bereitstellung komplexer Forschungsergebnisse, in: GWDG-Nachrichten 11/20162016, pp. 7-9 (only in German available)
  • Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Press Release from 28.07.2016: Research Data Center for the Humanities starts operations - First offers for research data management and long-term archiving
  • Schwardmann, Ulrich, Neues Verbundprojekt „Humanities Data Centre - Forschungsdatenzentrum für die Geisteswissenschaften“ gestartet, in: GWDG-Nachrichten 7/2014, pp. 12-15 (only available in German)

HDC Logo Niedersächsisches Ministerium  Logo HDC Logo


Dr. Sven Bingert


from 01.05.2014