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The Humanities Innovation Lab at UC Davis has been producing cutting-edge scholarship and facilitating un-

expected collaborations since its founding in 2009 with seed funding from the Office of Research and the dean of Humanities, Arts, and Cultural Studies. Over the next six years, the lab will see a major influx of new work and international collaboration. In 2011-2012, the lab’s direc- tor, Colin Milburn, the Gary Snyder Endowed Chair in Science and the Humanities, and his co-investigators worked on securing a $2.5 million grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. The Interactive and Multi-Modal Experience Research Syndicate (IMMERSe), a collaborative initiative be- tween the Games Institute at Canada’s University of Wa- terloo and the Humanities Innovation Lab at UC Davis, together with a team of researchers from several other Canadian universities (McMaster, Concordia, Carleton, and the University of Ontario Institute of Technology) will study the cultural impact of video games and im- mersive technologies. One key component of the research at UC Davis will

address how games and virtual reality technologies might converge with the experimental practices of the sciences. Other phases of the project will examine rela- tions of games to literature and the arts, urbanization, political activism, education, militarization, and social networks. “This research grows out of the ongoing col- laborative projects at the Humanities Innovation Lab,” said Milburn, “and it also incorporates several individual

research programs developed by faculty and students participating in IMMERSe.” Milburn is a co-Principal Investigator on the project and will allow him and other participants to focus on the cultural impacts of video games and interactive media, examining questions of virtuality and immersivity, narrative, multimodality, se- rious games and gamification, and ways in which game technologies transform diverse aspects of everyday life around the world.

A host of UC Davis researchers will contribute to IM- MERSe, including Joe Dumit (Anthropology and Sci- ence and Technology Studies), Caren Kaplan (Ameri- can Studies and STS), Oliver Kreylos (Geology, Institute for Data Analysis and Visualization), John Marx (Eng- lish), Michael Neff (Computer Science, Cinema and Technocultural Studies), Josef Nguyen (English), Kriss Ravetto (Cinema and Technocultural Studies, Science and Technology Studies), and Eric Smoodin (Ameri- can Studies). According to Milburn, additional UC Da- vis faculty, postdoctoral fellows, graduate students, and undergraduates will join the project over the next few years.

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