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Harvard's Library System to be Restructured

11.12.09

The University's sprawling yet intellectually extraordinary library system needs administrative, financial, and technological restructuring, according to an official Task Force on University Libraries. The traditionally decentralized system faces particular challenges in an environment that includes tighter budgets, shifting boundaries among academic disciplines, increased interdisciplinarity, and the destabilizing influence of the digital revolution.

The task force report makes five core recommendations: adoption of a shared administrative structure; improvement to information technology systems; changes to funding models and cost-sharing among the libraries, particularly with respect to offsite storage (45 percent of the collection is held in a depository); enhanced coordination of materials collection and especially access; and increased collaboration with other institutions. The comprehensive report also calls for the immediate formation of an implementation group, whose members were named in an accompanying letter from the task force chair, University provost Steven E. Hyman.

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Written accounts of Native Americans cultivating the land in New England overstate the importance of agriculture in the pre-contact period, according to a new study. Here, an engraving by Theodor De Bry, after a drawing by Jacques Le Moyne, depicts Timucua Indians at Fort Caroline, a French settlement established in what is now Florida, hoeing and sowing seeds, including beans and maize. The image may be the only contemporaneous visual depiction by Europeans showing the importance of agriculture to Native Americans in the New World.

Courtesy of the Lewis Ansbacher Map Collection, permanently housed in the Morris Ansbacher Map Room, Jacksonville (Florida) Public Library.

Human impact on New England ecology was minimal before Europeans arrived

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Loeb House, where the Corporation and Board of Overseers conduct their University business
Photograph by Harvard Magazine/JC

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Chart showing a scale balancing workers on one side against a big bag of money on the other

Click on arrow at right to view full image

A Gut Renovation for U.S. Labor Law

Native Americans cultivating a field

Written accounts of Native Americans cultivating the land in New England overstate the importance of agriculture in the pre-contact period, according to a new study. Here, an engraving by Theodor De Bry, after a drawing by Jacques Le Moyne, depicts Timucua Indians at Fort Caroline, a French settlement established in what is now Florida, hoeing and sowing seeds, including beans and maize. The image may be the only contemporaneous visual depiction by Europeans showing the importance of agriculture to Native Americans in the New World.

Courtesy of the Lewis Ansbacher Map Collection, permanently housed in the Morris Ansbacher Map Room, Jacksonville (Florida) Public Library.

Human impact on New England ecology was minimal before Europeans arrived

Photograph of Loeb House, Harvard University

Loeb House, where the Corporation and Board of Overseers conduct their University business
Photograph by Harvard Magazine/JC

Harvard Overseer election and divestment