Antiracism, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Award Program

Columbia University Libraries is committed to the work of antiracism, diversity, equity, and inclusion, including acting on known injustices and increased insights to facilitate learning, enable professional growth, and foster a variety of perspectives and ideas to address complex challenges. 

The Antiracism, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (ADEI) Award Program seeks to advance this commitment by providing funding to support efforts conducted by Columbia University Libraries employees that address racism and exclusion through new initiatives or by enhancing existing projects.

The ADEI Award Program aligns with the Libraries’ Strategic Directions to commit to inclusion, advance knowledge, inspire inquiry, catalyze discovery, shape discourse, and empower all staff.  The program is also designed to contribute towards the University’s overall Commitment to Antiracism

2023-2024 Funded Projects

Project Team: Thai Jones
The goal of this project is to discover the best current professional practices relating to antiracist teaching with archival materials. The project team will conduct research, create a digital report, and host a conversation with library staff to discuss our findings.

Project Team: Kevin Schlottmann and Courtney Chartier
Describe and digitize approximately 8,000 pages of Tsimshian (Ts’msyen) manuscripts. The images will be provided to the Tsimshian cultural groups who are interested in the material.

Project Team: Kae Bara Kratcha, and Ovita Williams, Executive Director, Action Lab for Social Justice
A series of monthly workshops for current Master of Social Work students seeking opportunities to improve and grow their research skills, make connections with other social work academics, and prepare for PhD applications and success in PhD programs.

Project Team: Jennifer Loubriel
A project that investigates how the Libraries can distribute scholarship funds to support students of color who have been accepted to an accredited program for library and information science.

Project Team: Yuusuf Caruso
A digital exhibit of photographic images from the Marc and Evelyne Bernheim Collection. The ADEI award would help to fund the digitization of up to 100 images and their presentation in a curated, digital library exhibit.

Project Team: Roberto C. Ferrari, Eric J. Reisenger, and Lillian Vargas
An initiative that intends to: buy new archival supplies and materials for rehousing; hire our preferred objects conservator to assist with rehousing and conservation; and coordinate new high-resolution imaging in the Avery Library photo studio for a focused selection of objects.

Project Team: Ben Chiewphasa, Kae Bara Kratcha, Nickeisha Pencil, Emily Schmidt, and Eamon Tewell
A research opportunity in which students complete independent research projects under the mentorship of a librarian and then install a small display about their research in a SESSL library.

2022-23 Funded Projects

Project Team: Ashley Luisa Santangelo, Pamela Casey, Iris Barreto, and William J. Willis
A series of lectures and discussions about current areas of study in BIPOC (black, indigenous, and people of color) print cultures, BIPOC librarianship, as well as a discussion about distrust among BIPOC people regarding academic spaces such as libraries.

See the Diversity in Librarianship Discussion Series page here. 

Project Team: Peter Magierski
Between 2017-2020, the Libraries employed advanced graduate students to provide basic descriptions of Islamic manuscripts in the Rare Book & Manuscript Library. This new funding enables the organization to hire an expert cataloger to review and enhance approximately 250 existing descriptions that remain offline.

Project Team: Roberto Ferrari
During the 2022-2023 academic year, in continuing work toward compliance with the federal Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), Art Properties and Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library will organize a series of projects with the goal of beginning consultations with Native American tribal nations regarding some objects in the library’s collection.

Project Team: Nancy Friedland
Performing the Library provides Columbia University graduate students with the opportunity to reflect, through art, on their relationships, personal and academic, with the Libraries. The theme for Performing the Library IV is focused on “overlooked lives and the libraries that hold their stories.”

Project Team: Chengzhi Wang and Jim Cheng
The Libraries will acquire new queer films by Popo Fan and introduce Chinese queer cinema and the Libraries’ film collections to the Columbia community, intending to encourage academic exploration and analysis of complex Chinese society and to better understand LGBTQ gender identities and sexualities in China.

Project Team: Robert Davis, Caro Bratnober, and Sarah Witte
The Libraries will conduct informational outreach to student groups and faculty regarding LGBTQ+ resources from and about Eastern and East Central Europe, as they are represented in the libraries of Columbia, Cornell, and ReCAP partners (Harvard, the New York Public Library, and Princeton).

Project Team: Katherine Brooks, Ben Chiewphasa, Chris Sala, Socrates Silva Reyes, and Sarah Witte
The Libraries will assess materials relating to the study of indigenous peoples in North America. Focus will be on materials identifiable and accessible through CLIO, and emphasis will be placed on enhancing collections through the addition of materials in digital formats, where possible.

Project Team: James Sobczak
The Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals will holistically reevaluate the journals that it actively indexes to focus more on architectural subjects, built environments, geographic regions, and communities of practice often overlooked in the traditional architectural canons.

Project Team: Gary Hausman
The Libraries will fund a one-year research position for an advanced Sanskrit graduate student to assist with preparations for a contextually historicized exhibit (both physical and online) of approximately 60 representative items from the Columbia Smith Indic collections.

Project Team: Peter Magierski
The Libraries will create a research guide to consolidate print and online resources related to the history of Palestine and the present situation of Palestinians in the diaspora, including funding to hire a student for 50 hours during the summer session.

Project Team: Gary Hausman and Peter Magierski
The Libraries will provide funding to hire a library assistant with advanced Urdu and Arabic knowledge to complete the cataloging records for rare Urdu and Arabic materials. Materials will then be added to the catalog, made available for checkout, and possibly made available digitally.

Project Team: Jenny Lee
There are 28 operas, oratorios, or large vocal works written by composer H. Lawrence Freeman held by the Rare Book & Manuscript Library in manuscript form, most of which are not digitized. This project will fund digitization for 6,600 pages of manuscript, ideally to facilitate performance of the works.

Project Team: Kevin Schlottmann, Courtney Chartier, Thai Jones, Emily Holmes, Dina Sokolova, and Brian Lucero
The Rare Book & Manuscript Library holds the George Hunt “Kwakiutl” manuscripts, a collection that consists of approximately 8,000 pages of linguistic and anthropological notes. Digitization of the manuscripts would make an important source of Native American linguistic cultural material available to the community for whom it is most important.