Dan Hazen, librarian for Latin America, Spain, and Portugal in Widener Library Collection Development, has accepted an assignment as the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Visiting Program Officer. Hazen will oversee the Global Resources Program (GRP), which is undergoing a transition, and will be responsible for leading the effort to define the program's future.
For the past six years the program, which is a joint initiative of the Association of American Universities (AAU) and ARL, has worked to improve access to international research resources through cooperative structures and new technology. It has now reached a crossroads. Grant funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, which created and sustained it, has come to an end. Deborah Jakubs, who directed the program, is returning to her full-time assignment at Duke University.
Since its inception, the GRP has promoted an interdependent approach to collecting scholarly materials from abroad, explored the role of new technologies, and nurtured cooperative structures and organizational partnerships. Hazen's challenge is to determine the manner in which to continue the program's various endeavors, not only in Latin America, but also in Africa, Eastern Europe, Germany, Japan, South Asia, and Southeast Asia.
"ARL perceives its global resources role as incubating projects, coordinating projects, and advocating creative responses to emerging international studies and global-resources agendas. This year, I believe the major challenge is to identify the priorities and trends to which other international players are responding in order to construct an outline of future GRP projects that address current issues," said Hazen.
Hazen plans to begin his term by speaking with faculty, administration, librarians, bibliographers, and scholars to assess needs and trends in international research resources.
"It is pretty clear that a successful program will require support and guidance from administrators, faculty members, and library directorsand also rely directly upon the energy and expertise of specialist librarians who will be called upon to manage and champion both current and future GRP projects. I won't be at all surprised to see changes in the roster and structure of the projects, though we'll have to wait to see what they are. I'm optimistic that the utility of the GRP will be reaffirmed," said Hazen.
Hazen will work with Duane Webster, ARL's executive director, and a transition-year advisory committee to decide goals, create a plan to accomplish those goals, and find funding. The part-time appointment does not require Hazen to relocate; he will continue to work in Widener Library and he will maintain his bibliographic responsibilities in collection development.
"I am pleased that Dan Hazen is able to take up this challenging assignment to build upon the work done by Deborah Jakubs and many of our ARL colleagues. The projects undertaken within this ARL-AAU program have demonstrated the complex interplay of issues related to sustaining research collections of international materialsranging from institutional budget constraints to developing staffs with the expertise to handle not only the languages but the economic, political, and cultural factors that influence international collecting," said Nancy M. Cline, Roy E. Larsen Librarian of Harvard College.
Funding for the transition year has been provided through the financial contributions of a number of ARL member libraries to ensure the continuation and expansion of the Global Resources Program.