Dr Mia Ridge

Mia Ridge
Digital Curator, Western Heritage Collections
Crowdsourcing, Digital Research, User Experience
Related Offices
Co-Investigator, Living with Machines; Principal Investigator, Collective Wisdom project

Dr Mia Ridge is the British Library’s Digital Curator for Western Heritage Collections. As part of the Library’s Digital Scholarship team, she helps enable innovative research based on the British Library’s digital collections, offering support, training and guidance on applying computational research methods to historical collections.

Current projects involve crowdsourcing the transcription of historical playbills, and experimenting with machine learning-based methods with library collections. In January 2020 she was awarded funding by the Arts and Humanities Research Council for 'Collective Wisdom', a project that will capture the state of the art in crowdsourcing and digital participation in cultural heritage in 2020-21.

She is a Co-Investigator on the Living with Machines project, where she leads public engagement with digital scholarship and heritage collections through crowdsourcing. Living with Machines is a major inter-disciplinary historical and data science research project analysing digitised sources at scale to provide new insights into mechanisation in the industrial revolution.

She is a member of several project advisory boards in the fields of digital humanities and digital cultural heritage, and has undertaken peer review for a range of journals and conference programmes. Mia has supervised undergraduate and postgraduate research projects applying digital scholarship methods to the Library’s collections.

Mia has published, taught and presented widely on her key areas of interest including user experience design and human-computer interaction, open cultural data, digital history, and audience engagement and participation in the cultural heritage sector. Her edited volume, ‘Crowdsourcing our Cultural Heritage’ (Ashgate) was published in October 2014.

Her PhD in digital humanities (Department of History, Open University) was titled ‘Making digital history: The impact of digitality on public participation and scholarly practices in historical research’. Mia has post-graduate qualifications in software development and an MSc in Human-Centred Systems (Human Computer Interaction). She was Chair of the Museums Computer Group (MCG) from 2011 to 2017, and a member of the Executive Council of the Association for Computers and the Humanities (ACH) from 2013-2017.

Formerly Lead Web Developer at the Science Museum Group, Mia has also worked for the Museum of London, Melbourne Museum (Australia) and Vicnet at the State Library of Victoria. She has worked internationally as a business analyst, usability consultant and web programmer in the cultural heritage and commercial sectors. Mia has held international fellowships at Trinity College Dublin/CENDARI, Ireland (2014), the Polis Center Institute on ‘Spatial Narrative and Deep Maps’ (2012) and the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media One Week One Tool program (2013), and had short Residencies at the Powerhouse Museum (2012) and the Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum (2012).


Edited volumes

Ridge, Mia, ed. 2014. Crowdsourcing Our Cultural Heritage. Farnham, UK: Ashgate.

Reports, book chapters and peer reviewed articles

Ridge, Mia. ‘Crowdsourcing in Cultural Heritage: A Practical Guide to Designing and Running Successful Projects’. In Routledge International Handbook of Research Methods in Digital Humanities, edited by Kristen Schuster and Stuart Dunn. Routledge, 2021.

Bergel, Giles, Pip Willcox, Guyda Armstrong, James Baker, Arianna Ciula, Nicholas Cole, Julianne Nyhan, et al. ‘Sustaining Digital Humanities in the UK’. Oxford, England: Software Sustainability Institute, 25 September 2020. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4046267.

McGillivray, Barbara, Beatrice Alex, Sarah Ames, Guyda Armstrong, David Beavan, Arianna Ciula, Giovanni Colavizza, et al. ‘The Challenges and Prospects of the Intersection of Humanities and Data Science: A White Paper from The Alan Turing Institute’. The Alan Turing Institute, 27 August 2020. https://doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.12732164.v5.

Ridge, Mia, and Giovanni Colavizza. ‘Conference Panel: The Past, Present and Future of Digital Scholarship with Newspaper Collections’. Utrecht, The Netherlands. Accessed 6 November 2019. https://doi.org/10.23636/496.

Ridge, Mia. ‘Breathing Life into Digital Collections at the British Library’. ACCESS / Journal of the Australian School Library Association 32, no. 3 (September 2018): 40–47.


Ridge, Mia. ‘The Contributions of Family and Local Historians to British History Online’. In Participatory Heritage, edited by Henriette Roued-Cunliffe and Andrea Copeland. London: Facet Publishing, 2017.


Guiliano, Jennifer, and Mia Ridge. ‘The Future of Digital Methods for Complex Datasets: An Introduction’. International Journal of Humanities and Arts Computing 10, no. 1 (1 March 2016): 1–7. https://doi.org/10.3366/ijhac.2016.0155.


McGregor, Nora, Mia Ridge, Stella Wisdom, and Aquiles Alencar-Brayner. ‘The Digital Scholarship Training Programme at British Library: Concluding Report & Future Developments’. In Digital Humanities 2016: Conference Abstracts. Kraków: Jagiellonian University & Pedagogical University, 2016. http://dh2016.adho.org/abstracts/178.


Ridge, Mia. 2013. “From Tagging to Theorizing: Deepening Engagement with Cultural Heritage through Crowdsourcing.” Curator: The Museum Journal

Ridge, Mia, Don Lafreniere, and Scott Nesbit. 2013. “Creating Deep Maps and Spatial Narratives Through Design.” International Journal of Humanities and Arts Computing

Barker, Elton, Christopher Bissell, Lorna Hardwick, Allan Jones, Mia Ridge, and John Wolffe. 2011. “Colloquium: Digital Technologies: Help or Hindrance for the Humanities?” Arts and Humanities in Higher Education 11 (1-1) (December): 185–200. 

Link to more publications by Dr Mia Ridge https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3733-8120

Edited volumes

  • Crowdsourcing Our Cultural Heritage (Farnham: Ashgate, 2014)


Digital Scholarship

Undertake innovative research with our digital collections and data