Who are we? Why are we here, and what do we want? How do we work?
Who are 25Humans?
25Humans is a global network of early-career researchers. It was founded by twenty-five scholars working in all disciplines of the humanities and in different countries across the globe. They all share the commitment that the common future of the humanities requires shared engagement across disciplinary and national boundaries.
We began as twenty-five scholars, and we direct our first projects at the horizon of the humanities in 2025; thus, “25Humans.” In that time, we hope to become a voice advocating for the humanities and its junior scholars around the world. 25Humans is open to graduate students, postdocs, and humanities professionals working inside and outside academic institutions interested in thinking with us about the needs and possibilities of the humanities in the 21st century.
Why are we here? What do we want?
We are a global community of junior humanities scholars and practitioners: our main goal is to promote the value of the humanities to the public, wherever we live and work. We want to highlight the singular importance of the kind of knowledge production generated in humanities disciplines; we want to promote the role of the humanities in the academy; and most importantly, we want to focus on fostering positive relations between the humanities and their societies around the world. Hence, we understand the three pillars of our engagement as advocacy, representation, and communication.
We believe that our work, specifically as a global community of junior scholars, is necessary. We see a lack of representation of perspectives for both early-career researchers in the academy and researchers working outside of academia. We see a lack of dialogue and integration of global north-south conversations. We see a lack of a firm stand on the part of humanities research for their specific and indispensable contribution to inter- and transdisciplinary research projects and to the formation of public knowledge. And we see how junior scholars—including you—often have original, future-oriented solutions to the problems which the world’s societies and its humanities face.
We want to be a strong and clear voice. We want to advocate for the humanities and its junior scholars in university contexts, media, personal communications, public forums, and everywhere else where such advocacy is needed. We want to offer representation of the humanities, offering our services to address the value of the humanities where such representative voices are needed. And we want to communicate: to help bridge the global north-south divide and to proactively go out and speak about the humanities and their (and our value) for society. We understand the humanities as always necessarily public and as always engaged in work that needs to be public and can and must be made public.
How do we work?
We work in communal dialogue, providing a network for communication, information, and support of junior humanities scholars, and a means of linking them into greater communities. Our already diverse members, working in science communications and alternative forms of knowledge production, in the theory of science and the humanities, inside and outside of academia, provide a sounding board for plans and projects; and we work together with partners from diverse public spheres to give voice to junior humanities scholars.
Our concrete plans for the near future are to organise a conference specifically on the perspective of junior humanities scholars, seeking to draw on both our members and on non-members to sketch a set of concrete plans for the 2025 horizon, and to expand our presence in online media, at workshops organised by other groups, and in the consciousness of those with the power to make decisions impacting the future of the humanities.