Crews has a distinguished career in copyright and fair use issues. Since 1994, he has been a professor at the Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis and the IU School of Library and Information Science. Crews has been a faculty member of the Munich Intellectual Property Law Center since its founding in 2003. He previously practiced business and entertainment law in Los Angeles, and has taught and published widely on copyright, constitutional law, political history, and library science. His work has won wide acclaim, and he has been active in projects and initiatives on copyright law in the United States and around the world.
"Kenneth Crews is an accomplished and innovative scholar and educator who will bring extraordinary experience, expertise and vision to Columbia’s new Copyright Advisory Office," said James G. Neal, Vice President for Information Services and University Librarian at Columbia. "His newest book, Copyright Law for Librarians and Educators, is widely used as a guide through the legal issues at numerous universities."
The Copyright Advisory Office, newly formed at Columbia University with the appointment of Dr. Crews, will serve the University community by providing educational and consultative support on copyright issues arising in the creation of original works and in the use of existing copyrighted works for teaching, research, and service. The Office will operate in close coordination with the library, administration, and many academic units at Columbia.
Crews earned a Ph.D. and M.L.S. from the Graduate School of Library & Information Science at the University of California, Los Angeles, a JD from Washington University, and his undergraduate history degree from Northwestern University. Since inception of the office in 1994, Crews has directed the Copyright Management Center, based at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). Since 1996, he has held a chaired professorship in the IU School of Law-Indianapolis, in addition to a joint appointment in the IU School of Library and Information Science.
"I'm looking forward to working with the faculty and the entire community of Columbia University," he said. "My principal research interest has been the relationship of copyright law to the needs of higher education. Copyright has a rich history, and I am delighted to have the opportunity to explore application of the law to matters of art, literature, music, and computer technology at Columbia."
Crews has also served as Virtual Intellectual Property Scholar at the University of Maryland Center for Intellectual Property. He was a visiting scholar at the Max Planck Institute for Intellectual Property, Competition and Tax Law in Munich, Germany. Crews has also taught courses in Copyright Law and Intellectual Property Law, and has been an invited speaker on college and university campuses and at conferences in 40 states and 10 foreign countries. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the American Library Association’s L. Ray Patterson Copyright Award in 2005.
As Director of the Copyright Advisory Office, Crews will serve as resource and advisor on the application of copyright policies to teaching and learning, research, and scholarly communication within the University. His responsibilities will include educating faculty, staff, and students about copyright through web-based information, publications, training programs, and conferences; monitoring legislative and national policy developments affecting copyright and its application at the University; and advising the University on copyright policy development affecting the academic programs of the University.
Columbia University Libraries is one of the top ten academic library systems in the nation, with 9.2 million volumes, over 65,650 serials, as well as extensive collections of electronic resources, manuscripts, rare books, microforms, and other nonprint formats. The collections and services are organized into 25 libraries, supporting specific academic or professional disciplines. Columbia Libraries employs more than 400 professional and support staff to assist faculty, students, and researchers in their academic endeavors. The Libraries’ website at www.columbia.edu/cu/lweb/ is a gateway to its print and electronic collections and to its services.