Jonathan O. Cain Named as New Associate University Librarian for Research and Learning

Jonathan Cain

NEW YORK - November 17, 2020 - Vice Provost and University Librarian Ann Thornton announced today her appointment of Jonathan O. Cain as the Associate University Librarian for Research and Learning.

Cain, who will take up his post in January 2021, will provide strategic leadership in support of University and Libraries initiatives and is responsible for driving coordinated efforts that advance knowledge at the highest level, support research and teaching, and disseminate Columbia-produced knowledge to the world.

Cain currently serves as the Interim Director of Digital Strategies and the Head, Data Services at the University of Oregon Libraries. He is also the libraries’ primary liaison with the Department of Planning, Public Policy, and Management, providing in-depth consultative reference services, collection development, and course-integrated instruction. Before joining the University of Oregon, Cain served as a reference and instruction librarian (Assistant Professor) at Hunter College and a reference associate in Coles Science Center at N.Y.U. Bobst Library.

“Jonathan has the vision to lead at a time when research, scholarship, libraries, and higher education are all experiencing significant change,” said Thornton. “He brings a deep commitment to understanding the needs of researchers and students today and also to anticipating and preparing for the future.”

Cain's work in libraries has focused on educational technologies, data education, policy and equity, digital scholarship, scholarly communication, and digital curation. Outside of his work in libraries, Jonathan has provided pro bono his digital cultural heritage and higher education research technology expertise to nonprofit organizations. Previously, he served on the Board of Directors of Oregon Black Pioneers and currently serves in that capacity for Code for Science and Society.

Cain holds an M.S.L.I.S. from Pratt Institute, an M.A. in Africana Studies from New York University, and a B.S. in Anthropology from the College of Charleston.

Reporting to Thornton, the position is a member of the Libraries' Executive Committee and will be a key participant in overall Libraries budgetary, assessment, and strategic planning. The position will also work closely with the Libraries' Leadership Council and the Provost's Advisory Committee on the Libraries to set priorities for the organization.

"I am so excited to be joining the Columbia University community at this moment in time,” said Cain. “I am looking forward to working with partners within the libraries, across campus, and our surrounding communities to find unique ways to support the university's goals in research, learning, and cultural impact."