Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Library Acquires Bourbon Family Archive

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011
Parisani d'Ascoli coat of arms (1747)
Parisani d’Ascoli coat of arms (1747), from the Bourbon family archive.
The UCLA Library has acquired the Bourbon del Monte di San Faustino Family Archive, a comprehensive collection of documents created between the 14th and 19th centuries by, for and about this prominent Italian family. 
Among the collection’s contents are civil and ecclesiastical contracts, documents from lawsuits and court cases, wills and post-mortem inventories, genealogies, certificates of nobility, correspondence, and family chronicles.
“We are honored to have been given this distinguished family’s archive,” said UCLA University Librarian Gary E. Strong. “Together with the Orsini Family Papers, these remarkable materials provide UCLA’s students and faculty with rich primary resources offering insight into the culture, politics and society of the family’s traditional territory in Italy, as well as throughout Europe.”
The Bourbon del Monte di San Faustino family can trace its origin and lineage back some 1,200 years to the time of Charlemagne, emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, who granted the family its original patent of nobility. The territory over which its members ruled for centuries was known as Monte Santa Maria Tiberina; spanning parts of Tuscany and Umbria, it is located between the cities of Arezzo and Città di Castello.
The archive contains more than 21,000 manuscript leaves, more than 2,000 printed pages and 30 large illuminated parchment documents. Its unbroken provenance can be traced back to the 16th century. The archive is a gift from Montino Bourbon, the sixth Principe di San Faustino, Marchese di Monte Santa Maria, and his wife, Rita. Bourbon, who was born in Rome, currently lives in Santa Barbara, Calif. The collection will be housed in the Charles E. Young Research Library Department of Special Collections.
“The Bourbon del Monte family is among the earliest aristocratic families in Italy, thus an integral part of Italian social history and related to many noble families — the Sforza, the  Farnese, the Gonzaga, to name a few, and, of course, to the Orsini,” said Massimo Ciavolella, a UCLA professor of Italian. “This well-organized archive affords us a look at the workings of the family within in a small Umbrian setting and will inform scholars in the fields of economics, law, prosopography, paleography, geography, diplomatic history and, of course, literature and language.”

Holiday Greetings

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009


Budget Q & A, Number 2

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

Q: I am finding it difficult to think 90%. What is hard for me is where to draw the line without knowing what priorities you have for the UCLA Library over the next two years. Can you provide me with guidelines or something like a vision statement for thinking in the 90% world?

A: Those of us who have gone through budget restructuring over the years here at UCLA or in other libraries have had to face this question before. It is hard to think in a shrinking environment. The phrases “do more with less,” “it’s just a paradigm shift,” “it’s a really bad year” are all things we have been told before. But it just doesn’t get any easier.

When I came to UCLA in 2003, we began a strategic planning process that would guide us out of the budget reductions that the library had faced in 2002-2003. Our next budget submittals were strategy based and luckily there was some new resource that came to the library which allowed us to begin to address some new directions. Within a couple of years of working with staff and our strategic planning task force, we issued a strategic plan (2006-2009) that everyone should have read and studied by now. Each unit is asked to develop annual work plans and every individual should have work plans as well. The strategic plan is our vision statement as it guides us in where we want the library to go. As I mentioned in an earlier post we are beginning to revise that plan (for 2010-13) and our work now on the 90% focus will help shape that plan.

At the same time, the campus is engaged in its first efforts of developing a UCLA vision and strategic plan. It appears that an academic plan will be produced during the next few months and this will help the Library tie into the campus plan more directly. But that should not stop us from setting our own destiny. In our current strategic plan we tied our focus to the vision set for by Chancellor Carnesale. We will do the same for Chancellor Block. One thing I do know is that we will be pushed to “do more with less.” What we choose to do is critical to our future success.

So it is really each of us thinking about what is important and how we relate to our common focus as we express it through our internal planning process.

Q: Who will make the decision about what is cut and what remains in the budget for 2009-10?

A: Ultimately the University Librarian will make the decision as to what is to be recommended to the campus. The Provost and the Chancellor ultimately make the final decision as to the overall budget for the campus within the guidelines set down by the Regents and the Office of the President.

But, the Library decides what to recommend. I still want every unit and unit managers to think about how to reduce their costs, and others should be considering how to do so as well. Units must think about the implications for other units in the library of the recommendations they are making so as not to shift work somewhere else without full consideration of the impact. Unit managers should be discussing proposed cost reductions with their AULs or the person to whom they report now so that these proposals are feeding into the broader thinking and discussions that are going on.

It is important for all of us to remember that we are doing a budget proposal that is part of a campus process and timeline. The Library’s proposal is due in February, so we will be getting into the detail planning soon after the new year. This allows time for folks to think about how they would change what they do, what they would stop doing, and how to prioritize their recommendations.

I can then make decisions to the greatest extent possible based on documented priorities.

Q: This fiscal year’s energy costs charged to the UCLA Library caught me by surprise. It didn’t make sense to me why campus would decide to charge us an incredible amount of money based on total square footage when the space within the UCLA Library that I consider to be ours is a fraction of that: the amount made up of library staff space. What strategies are you enlisting to address this issue? Are there public talking points that you would like us to use when we talk to UCLA faculty, staff, and students?

A: The reality is that the Library is the second largest holder of campus real estate, only behind the health sciences/hospital. We were able to negotiate a reduction in the square footage that the campus would use to calculate the charge back by recognizing central stack space and major reading rooms as well as the SRLF space as being “common good” space. The only other exception from the calculations are the general assignment classrooms. The fact is that we occupy a lot of space to house over 100 librarians and 400 staff and several hundred students at any one time. Our space at Kinross South alone exceeds what many departments have available for their use.As to the share for deferred maintenance, these costs are just not being covered by UCOP so must now be born by the campus. It was a campus decision to allocate those costs on the same square footage basis. I expect that we will continue to have long discussions about this in the next few months. But the reality is that these are the costs and they must be paid. Do keep in mind that these are not “one time” allocations. It appears that we will be asked to make these permanent in next year’s budget.

I would be cautious as you speak with faculty as their departments do not have any relief from these costs. They pay the full allocation based on the square footage that they occupy.

I hope this is helpful and very much appreciate your questions as we move forward.

Q: We’ve been through these budget reductions before. Won’t we recover in a short time and then everything will be okay again?

A: From the projections from the State Legislative Analyst, this downturn will be deeper and longer than it has been in recent memory. We need to be very careful about the options we explore for it may be some time before there are funds to recover.

Holiday Greetings

Sunday, December 14th, 2008


National Library of Singapore

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008


Chinese Reading Room in the National Library.

Arriving in Singapore for the Pacific Rim Digital Library Alliance meeting PRDLA), I had the opportunity to visit the new National Library of Singapore. Dedicated in 2005, this new building is quite exciting. It is a smart green building with an open plaza from the street drawing one into the complex rising some 16 stories. It includes a lending library open to the general public which was completely full of people with many sitting on the floor and crowded into the stacks. As the library rises into the sky various floors are devoted to research and national library functions. Broad open reading rooms, study spaces and collection are well displayed and accessible. Finding one’s way through the building is easy and the spaces well used. Walkways are filled with exhibitions and views of the city are spectacular.


National Library Building

YRL Renovation Moves Forward

Wednesday, August 27th, 2008

As you know, demolition has begun on “A” level within YRL. At times it feels as if I am sitting right in the middle of it as it is happening directly under my office. And we are preparing for this to go on over the next couple of years as we move forward. That project has been approved at the campus level and is underway. Susan Parker briefed you all earlier on this phase of the proejct.

This morning we received word that the President and Chairman of the Board, Committee on Grounds and Buildings of the UC Regents has approved an amendment to the Budget for Capital Improvements and the Campital Improvement Program for the YRL First Floor Renovation Project.

To summarize, “the project will renovate 31,695 asf on the first floor providing improvements and acessibility upgrades for the improved functionality of lbirary users of teh Young Research Lbirary (YRL). The project will construct a new reading room for frequently-used print reference matrials; a research commons that includes workstations and instructional spaces for collaborative projects and individual study; group study rooms; a secure and climate controlled exhibit gallery for the display of rare books, manuscripts and artwork from the libraries collections; a 110-person meeting room for seiminars, symposia and films, and a cafe with seating area and service counter.”

The total project cost of $12,950,000 is funded from gift funds. The library now moves into the fund raising phase of the project as we still need to raise part of these funds to complete the project.

I am very excited that this begins to move us forward on our plans to upgrade our library spaces across campus. The renovations at the Management Library will be completed the first part of September and the plans for renovation of the Performing Arts Special Collections are soon to begin.