Welcome to Oiko.world!
The idea for Oiko.world came to me when beginning research for my recent book Ancient Worlds. In trying to research and understand the links between communities stretched across the ancient globe, I was constantly confronted with the traditional bounded way in which we study history, almost as isolated silos of activity. While we study the past in this way for good reasons, what we loose from such a perspective is a sense of how communities connected together, and a wider comparative sense of how civilisations evolved.
And despite the enormous contribution to the study of the past made in recent years by Digital Humanities, there was still no place to go, which facilitated an exploration of the ancient global perspective.
Oiko.world seeks to offer just such a digital space. A place in which users can discover, compare and discuss what was happening in different ancient civilisations across the ancient globe, exploring and making connections between these different communities. Given the globalised world in which we live, and the even more globalised future which we will occupy, a global perspective – as much of the past as of the present and the future – seems to me to be something we cannot afford to be without.
The project has been funded by two major University of Warwick HEIF Impact Awards in 2015-6 and 2016-7, and has been led at Warwick by myself and Academic Technologist Steve Ranford, and externally by Computer Minds. The data in the system so far has been added by two groups of interns led by Ms. Vicky Jewell (PhD student in the Department of Classics at the University of Warwick). My sincerest thanks go to everyone involved in the project for helping making Oiko.world a reality.
Oiko.world, while focusing on the ancient past, is just beginning its life. We welcome all your feedback as we seek to broaden the reach, scope and usability of the site. Most importantly, we hope you enjoy exploring!
Dr Michael Scott
Associate Professor of Classics and Ancient History, University of Warwick