Gunter Waibel to serve as executive director of California Digital Library

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The University of California appointed Gunter Waibel to associate vice provost and executive director of the California Digital Library on Monday.

Located in Oakland, the California Digital Library serves as a resource for online research across the UC system and conducts independent research projects. Waibel will assume the position from Interim Executive Director Ivy Anderson in May, according to a UC Office of the President press release.

The purpose of the CDL, according to Susan Carlson, vice provost for academic personnel, is to “purchase and curate information for UC faculty, staff and students.” It also plays a role in open-access publishing, which helps make research available to the public.

“It fits with our mission to find the best way to publish information and make it available not just for scholars who can walk into the library but for anybody online,” Carlson said. “The digital library has been a leader in that regard.”

In his new position, Waibel will be managing a staff of about 70 people and collaborating with all 10 UC campuses in order to curate campus-specific resources.

Waibel previously worked at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive as a digital media developer, and while working there, he also helped create the Online Archive of California for the CDL.

“It’s a fairly unusual skill set to have both an understanding of how libraries work and academic research libraries in particular, and to have knowledge of technology, which of course is the center of a digital library,” Carlson said.

Waibel has been working at the Smithsonian Institution for the past five years as the director of the Digitization Program Office. While there he helped lead a 3-D digitization team, which was responsible for creating the first 3-D portrait of a sitting president.

“Gunter was our first choice, and we were very excited when he accepted,” Carlson said.

Contact Anderson Lanham at [email protected].