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Sema Colpan

Sema Colpan, historian, is the research coordinator at the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Digital History (LBIDH).

She graduated from the Advertising Academy in Vienna, specializing in market communication, and gained experience in the advertising industry before pursuing her studies in history and cultural studies at the Universities of Vienna and Seville. Since 2009, she has been working as a researcher on various contemporary history research projects.

At the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for History and Society (LBIGG), renamed Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Digital History (LBIDH) in March 2019, she was a researcher in the DOC-team project “Sponsored Films and the Culture of Modernization” (2010-2013, OEAW Austrian Academy of Sciences) and in this context a Visiting Scholar at McGill University in Montreal in 2011. From 2014 to 2016, she worked in the project “Metropolis in Transition: Vienna | Budapest 1916-1921” (Sparkling Science). In the summer of 2015, together with Julia Neidhardt (TU Wien), she designed and implemented the “Vienna Summer School on Digital Humanities” (WWTF Vienna Science and Technology Fund).

Between 2016 and 2019, she worked at the Austrian State Archives as a research assistant and head of the Public Relations and Communication Department.

Since April 2019, Sema Colpan has been LBIDH’s research coordinator. She participated in the project “Visual History of the Holocaust: Rethinking Curation in the Digital Age” (2019-2023, EU Horizon 2020), whose project management office she headed. Currently, she works on additions to this project and on the project “Modern Vienna Time Machine” (2023-2025, City of Vienna MA 7).

Sema Colpan has published on filmmaking during World War I, (Jewish) Vienna in the interwar period, Austrian advertising and industrial films, and urban history.