Humanities

Chris Bourg named director of MIT Libraries

Posted November 21st, 2014 by mit-admin
CBourg photo blog

Chris Bourg (Photo by: Wayne Vanderkull)

Longtime libraries administrator at Stanford tapped to lead MIT’s libraries and the MIT Press.

Chris Bourg has been named as the new director of the MIT Libraries, effective in February. Provost Martin Schmidt announced her appointment today in an email to the MIT community.

Bourg comes to MIT from Stanford University, where she is currently associate university librarian for public services. At Stanford, Bourg oversees the largest division of the Stanford University Libraries, with six branches and a collection of more than 4 million volumes.

Bourg “has a deep appreciation for the critical role of scholarly communication in a research university environment, and how this communication links to education and service to the community,” Schmidt wrote in his email to the community. “She also has considerable experience with leveraging the capabilities of digital technologies in order to enhance library services.”

Bourg joins the MIT Libraries and MIT Press at a pivotal time, and will play an important role in guiding the redesign and renovation of library spaces. She will also lead the exploration of the Libraries’ role in new modes of learning and global engagement, and advance MIT’s commitment and influence in the area of scholarly communication and open access.

“I am very much looking forward to working with Chris as she undertakes the leadership of the MIT Libraries, particularly at a time when the nature of library services is evolving to accommodate a variety of needs related to research and education,” Schmidt wrote. “I know you will join me in welcoming her to the MIT community.”

As a senior officer with oversight responsibility for the MIT Press, Bourg will also provide strategic guidance to the Press, expanding international engagement and managing its evolving business models. The MIT Press is one of the largest university presses in the world; it publishes journals, scholarly books, trade books, textbooks, and reference works in print and digital formats in a wide range of academic disciplines.

Bourg’s appointment follows a nationwide search that began after the death of the Libraries’ previous director of 17 years, Ann Wolpert, in October 2013.

“I have long admired MIT’s commitment to openness, inclusion, and innovation,” Bourg says. “It is an honor to join a community of faculty, staff, and students with a global reputation for excellence, integrity, and service. I look forward to engaging in conversations across the MIT community about the future of library spaces, services, and resources. Together, with the talented staff of the libraries and the MIT Press, we have the opportunity to build on MIT’s legacy and to be a leader in creating new models for scholarly communication and research libraries. I am eager to get started.”

Read the full story on MIT News.

Unboxing the Chomsky Archive

Posted November 4th, 2014 by mit-admin
Chomsky_duotoneWeb

Professor Noam Chomsky Photo by: Philip van Ootegem

A new website offers a glimpse at a lifetime of work, and the chance to support it.  

Two years after the MIT Libraries’ Institute Archives were chosen as the stewards of Noam Chomsky’s personal papers, over 260 boxes of the professor emeritus’ materials have been transferred, organized, and re-housed in the Archives.

A new website, “Unbox the Chomsky Archive,” offers a preview of some of the unique materials found in the collection, as well as a way to support the archival project. Through slideshows on the site you can explore Chomsky’s contributions to MIT, the field of linguistics, and his political activism, and dedication to social justice. Read notes Chomsky prepared for lectures, go to the front lines of political protests he attended, read his personal correspondence with other great thinkers, and learn how his views shaped the political discourse.

Additional funding is needed to further expand access to this valuable resource for students, researchers, and those wishing to preserve Chomsky’s remarkable legacy. A gift of any size will contribute to this important work. With your help we will:

  • Process the collection, ensuring that any restrictions, fragile materials, photographs, and digital materials are handled with care, and that materials are described accurately for researchers and future digitization purposes.
  • Digitize the collection so that researchers from all over the world can have access to the materials without physically visiting MIT.

To help us toward our $1.5 million goal, donate online by clicking the “Give Now” link on the site, or contact us at chomskyproject@mit.edu for more information.