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A welcome message from our new Dean, Simon Neame

Simon NeameSeptember 1st marked my very first day as the Dean of UW Libraries. I am so excited to start this new journey in Seattle, and I am energized by the amazing UW community that has already been so welcoming and supportive. While this year is again different than most, I know that all of the hard work and dedication of the Libraries’ staff throughout the pandemic has prepared us for a safe and successful fall quarter and reopening.  While we plan to open our spaces for in-person services, we will continue to offer a continuity of online services for remote consultations for all services, including teaching and learning —building off the robust online model that serves ALL students, faculty and the community, no matter where they are.

While the University of Washington is a new environment for me, the academic landscape and the strategic priorities of UW Libraries are familiar territory. With an urgent focus on equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives; a strong foundation for digital and open scholarship; a highly regarded and vast collection of regional and cultural significance, and amazing staff—I feel both inspired and challenged—in the best possible way.

UW Libraries is the center of academic research, connecting students, faculty and the community through the sharing of knowledge, resources and perspectives. We are partners, co-creators and protectors of that knowledge. With the constantly changing landscape of academic publishing and the emergence of new tools and technology to create, publish, preserve and increase access, the Libraries will continue to be a critical partner, helping UW students and faculty to navigate change and support teaching, learning and research in new ways.  Philanthropy is both a catalyst and sustaining support of the Libraries, and I am inspired by and excited to engage with our UW Libraries donors who are so essential to this work ahead.

The first year in any new position is all about learning and listening. I know, even after my first three days on campus, that our UW Libraries team is prepared to lead and guide the path forward through collaboration and fearless exploration. I look forward to championing that work, and to working with all of you – inside and outside our UW community, in our shared efforts to advance research for the public good.

While the current public health conditions remain fluid, we continue to work with UW leadership to align with University policies and guidance across all campus Libraries. If and when changes in operations are warranted, we are committed to transparent and timely communication. The best place to see real-time updates is the Libraries COVID update page, and via our central UW Libraries social media channels.

I am excited to open the doors and to see the first students enter the Libraries in fall quarter (following all health and safety protocols, of course). Thanks again to all who have made my first days on campus so welcoming. I very much look forward to meeting with colleagues across campus and within the community in the coming weeks and months.

Go Huskies!

Simon Neame

Dean of University Libraries