[Preservenw] Mellon Grants CLIR $4.27 Million for Program to
Catalog Hidden Collections
menges at u.washington.edu
Mon Mar 24 12:48:18 PDT 2008
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded the Council on Library and
Information Resources (CLIR) $4.27 million to create a national program to
identify and catalog hidden special collections and archives.
Through a national competition, the program will award funds to institutions
holding collections of high scholarly value that are difficult or impossible
to locate through finding aids. Award recipients will create descriptive
information for their hidden collections that will be linked to and
interoperable with all other projects funded by this grant, to form a
federated environment that can be built upon over time.
CLIR will issue a request for proposals by early June, and decisions will be
announced in fall 2008. CLIR expects to award about $4 million in the first
cycle. It is possible that the program will be extended for subsequent
funding cycles over five years.
"Librarians and archivists have long despaired at the huge amount of
intellectually valuable information that, for lack of cataloging, is unknown
or inaccessible to scholars," said CLIR Board Chairperson Paula Kaufman.
"This award to CLIR underscores the importance of the hidden collections
problem and supports a coordinated, national response. On behalf of the
community and the CLIR Board, I want to express my deep gratitude to the
Mellon Foundation for its decision to support this important initiative."
"Only a national program can effectively address the problem of hidden
collections," said CLIR President Charles Henry. "The records and
descriptions this program creates will be accessible through the Internet
and the Web, exposing collections to a global audience of scholars,
students, and teachers. It will facilitate the harvesting, aggregation, and
thematic correlation of the records to advance intellectual productivity. As
a cyberinfrastructure effort, the program will also build sustainable
communities of complementary backgrounds and perspectives within higher
education over time."
CLIR will form a review panel to evaluate proposals and select award
recipients. Scholars will make up half of the ten-person panel; the
remaining five will include one university and one college library director,
one expert in special collections and one in information technology, and
CLIR's president. "The composition of the committee is meant to ensure the
program's priority of making collections available that are of the highest
value to research and teaching," said Mr. Henry.
More information about the award program is available at
CLIR is an independent, nonprofit, organization whose mission is to expand
access to information, however recorded and preserved, as a public good.
Through publications, projects, and programs, CLIR works to maintain and
improve access to information for generations to come. In partnership with
other institutions, CLIR helps create services that expand the concept of
"library" and supports the providers and preservers of information.
Information about CLIR and its work is available at www.clir.org.
More information about the Preservenw