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How we view the past is very much shaped by the stories we’re told about it and AI innovations are helping researchers to enrich our understanding of history. 

A new project called VOICES  is using artificial intelligence to uncover the untold women’s experiences of extreme trauma and civil war in early modern Ireland. The project was recently launched at Trinity College Dublin and today we hear from the interdisciplinary team of historians and computer scientists leading the research. 

Our expert guests are two Trinity researchers, Erasmus Smith’s Professor of Modern History, Jane Ohlmeyer, and Professor in Computer Science in the School of Computer Science and Statistics,  Declan O’Sullivan. 


  • Challenges in processing data from the 16th and 17th Century 
  • Utilising knowledge graphs for interpreting phrases, spelling and grammar 
  • Recovering stories of Ireland’s forgotten women 
  • Creating processes and digital archives for future researchers
  • Crossovers in learning from interdisciplinary approaches 


Professor Jane Ohlmeyer is Erasmus Smith’s Professor of Modern History at Trinity College Dublin and Chair of the Irish Research Council, which funds frontier research across all disciplines. Jane was the founding Head of the School of Histories and Humanities, Trinity’s first Vice-President for Global Relations (2011-14) and Director of the Trinity Long Room Hub Arts and Humanities Research Institute (2015-20).

Jane is an expert on the New British and Atlantic Histories and has published extensively on early modern Irish and British history. She is  the author or editor of numerous articles and 13 books. Jane has been the Principal Investigator (PI) or co-PI for 25 research and research infrastructure projects with awards totalling c.€22 million from national, European and international funders. 

Declan O’Sullivan is a Professor in Computer Science at the School of Computer Science and Statistics, and is a co-applicant Principal Investigator in the ADAPT SFI Research Centre. Prof. O’Sullivan and his team’s research in Knowledge Graph Techniques, which extracts, transforms and integrates data, is central to this relationship between data and machine learning. 

Since joining TCD from industry in 2001, Declan has established himself as an international research leader in his field: authoring 260+ scientific peer-reviewed papers and international Journals; being a member of 3 journal editorial boards and having undertaken 12+ chair roles in IEEE and IFIP conferences over the years. He has won competitive research funding as PI and Co-PI of approximately 7.8M euro. He was elected as a Fellow in Trinity College Dublin in 2019 in recognition for the quality of his contributions.