He was also instrumental in the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI), an international cooperative project to develop and disseminate guidelines for the encoding and interchange of electronic text for research. He was co-editor, with Lou Burnard, of the TEI's Guidelines for Electronic Text Encoding and Interchange in 1994. He also served as Editor in chief of the TEI from 1988 to 2000.
XML and TEI have become ubiquitous in their domains. Sue Polanka (Head of Reference/Instruction, Wright State University Libraries) notes that the TEI "...in the 1980s and 90s established a fundamental set of methods and practices that now underpin most digital humanities scholarship" Sperberg-McQueen has been a key leader of these and other standards efforts through extensive speaking, teaching, writing, and research.
He holds a Ph.D. in comparative literature from Stanford University, and has taught and published widely on markup systems, overlapping markup, formal languages, semantic theory, and other topics.
In 2015, Sperberg-McQueen held courses on Digital Humanities at the Technical University of Darmstadt as visiting professor.
- http://www.w3.org/People/cmsmcq/ — Home page at the Web Consortium
- http://cmsmcq.com/ — personal Web page, with selected publications at http://cmsmcq.com/doclist.html
- http://www.gca.org/papers/xmleurope2001/papers/bio/s02-1auth1.html—bio from XML Europe 2001 conference
- http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0EIN/is_2003_Dec_10/ai_111110786/ -- "XML Cup 2003 Awards Presented"
- Nancy Ide; C. M. Sperberg-McQueen (1995). "The TEI: History, goals, and future". Computers and the Humanities. 29 (1): 5–15. doi:10.1007/bf01830313.
- Sue Polanka. (July 26, 2012). "DPLA receives $1 million award from the NEH". Archived from the original on July 30, 2012.
- Allen Renear; David Dubin; C. M. Sperberg-McQueen (2002). Towards a semantics for XML markup. ACM Symposium on Document Engineering. pp. 119–126.
- C. M. Sperberg-McQueen; Claus Huitfeldt (2000). GODDAG: A Data Structure for Overlapping Hierarchies. 8th International Conference on Digital Documents and Electronic Publishing, DDEP 2000, 5th International Workshop on the Principles of Digital Document Processing, PODDP 2000. Munich, Germany. pp. 139–160.
- C. M. Sperberg-McQueen (2005). Applications of Brzozowski derivatives to XML Schema processing. Extreme Markup Languages.
- C. M. Sperberg-McQueen (2011). What Constitutes Successful Format Conversion? Towards a Formalization of 'Intellectual Content. International Journal of Digital Curation. 6. pp. 153–164.