Dietrich School Professor Receives NEH Grant

The National Endowment for the Humanities’ Office of Digital Humanities has awarded an Institutes for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities grant to David J. Birnbaum. Birnbaum professor and chair of the Dietrich School's Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures.

Birnbaum's grant was part of a total of $29 million in grants covering 215 humanities projects and programs announced today by the National Endowment for the Humanities. The $249,456 grant will support “Advanced Digital Editing: Modeling the Text and Making the Edition”, a two-week summer institute on the theory and development of digital scholarly editions for 25 participants to be hosted at the University of Pittsburgh.

Birnbaum has taught at Pitt since 1990 and has chaired the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures since 1996. Since 2011, he has taught Computational Methods in the Humanities, a coding-intensive course in Pitt’s University Honors College.

At Harvard University, Birnbaum earned a master’s degree and PhD in Slavic languages and literatures in 1980 and 1988, respectively. He received a master’s degree in Slavic languages and literatures from The Ohio State University in 1978. Birnbaum earned a bachelor’s degree in Russian at Brown University in 1976. He was recognized in 2015 by the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences with the Marin Drinov Medal, the academy’s highest honor for foreign scholars.

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at