The Virtual Shanghai project is backed by a team of experts from Institut d’Asie Orientale and the Institut des Sciences de l’Homme in Lyon, France, East China Normal University, Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences and University of California, Berkeley Center for Chinese Studies Library. Here’s how they describe the project on the site:
Virtual Shanghai is a research and resource platform on the history of Shanghai from the mid-nineteenth century to nowadays. It incorporates four sets of documents: essays, original documents, photographies, and maps. The objective of the project is to write a history of the city through the combined mobilization of these various sets of documents. The implementation of this approach relies on the use of NTIC technologies and GIS technology. On the research side, the platform will offer various ways to step into the history of the city and follow its course at different levels over time. On the resource side, apart from providing original textual and visual documents, it develops a powerful cartographic tool for both observation and creation. The authors of the present project suscribe to the idea of sharing scholarship and research tools for the benefit of scholars, students, and citizens at large.