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Awards

The Sikh Virsa Pakistan website has received the Times Higher Education (THE) award under the category “Excellence and Innovation in the Arts" in the year 2022.

“This is the fourth annual THE Awards Asia, and over the past couple of years we have showcased many wonderful examples of universities doing what they do best: adapting brilliantly to novel challenges. But throughout this period, their core missions have remained the same: cultivating new ideas; helping students grow into productive and engaged citizens; working collaboratively to tackle problems locally, nationally and internationally; and contributing to efforts to build strong and resilient societies in which people can flourish.

It was quite a challenge, but eventually we whittled nearly 500 entries down to 80 finalists, and while we of course congratulate the 10 who won this year, everyone who reached the final stages deserves enormous credit for the work they did in 2021. Theirs are all fascinating and inspiring stories, and proof, if it were needed, that Asia’s universities are equipped with the vision, resources and will to rise to any task.

— Phil Baty

Describing the initiative as “impactful and collaborative”, the judges said: “Through internal, multidisciplinary collaboration between the computer science and history departments, a new project has emerged – a new but not necessarily exclusive way of looking at and reading history.”

An interdisciplinary project at Lahore University of Management Sciences creatively united cultural heritage and historical research practice with cutting-edge technologies to help bring to life artefacts from Pakistan’s Sikh period, in the process creating new opportunities for collaboration beyond the university.

Materials from the iconic Lahore Fort’s Sikh Gallery were given a visual online showcase in Sikh Virsa Pakistan, the first website of its kind in the region, which narrates a journey through Sikh culture and history. The project aims to make culture more accessible and relevant, bringing the arts to new audiences.

Sikh Virsa Pakistan has led to the creation of a new undergraduate history course that has engaged students in the humanities, social sciences and pure sciences in learning to use computer software to complement traditional research and learning methods. It has also inspired other museums to develop similar projects.

Describing the initiative as “impactful and collaborative”, the judges said: “Through internal, multidisciplinary collaboration between the computer science and history departments, a new project has emerged – a new but not necessarily exclusive way of looking at and reading history.”

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