Go behind the scenes with Dan Cohen to learn more about the Digital Public Library of America

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View the video or download the slides from the recent Inside the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) OCLC Research Distinguished Seminar Series presentation in which DPLA  Executive Founding Director Dan Cohen explains how the DPLA was created, how it functions as a portal and platform, what the staff is currently working on, and what's to come for the young project and organization.


About Dan Cohen

As Founding Executive Director of the DPLA (Digital Public Library of America), Dan Cohen works to further the DPLA's mission to make the cultural and scientific heritage of humanity available, free of charge, to all. Prior to his tenure, Dan was the Director of the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University. At the Center, Dan oversaw projects ranging from new publishing ventures (PressForward) to online collections (September 11 Digital Archive) to software for scholarship (the popular Zotero research tool). His books include Digital History: A Guide to Gathering, Preserving, and Presenting the Past on the Web (with Roy Rosenzweig) and Equations from God: Pure Mathematics and Victorian Faith.

Dan was an inaugural recipient of the American Council of Learned Societies' Digital Innovation Fellowship. In 2011 he received the Frederick G. Kilgour Award from the American Library Association for his work in digital humanities, and in 2012 he was named one of the top "tech innovators" in academia by the Chronicle of Higher Education. Dan received his bachelor’s degree from Princeton, his master's degree from Harvard, and his PhD from Yale.


About the OCLC Research Distinguished Seminar Series

The OCLC Research Distinguished Seminar Series was established in 1978 to encourage the exchange of ideas across the barriers of time, space and disciplines. Each year we invite distinguished professionals to our headquarters in Dublin, Ohio to give presentations on topics of current interest. Speakers may discuss recently completed or early-stage research that they have undertaken or report other types of professional activity. Some topics align closely with our current research directions, while others represent areas of interest to the library and information science community that are not formally being studied by our researchers. Diversity of topics is essential to meeting the purpose of the Distinguished Seminar Series. See our Distinguished Seminar Series page for a list of previous speakers and their presentations.

For more information:

Lorcan Dempsey
Vice President, Research, and Chief Strategist

Melissa Renspie
Senior Communications Officer
OCLC Research


Quick links:

"Inside the Digital Public Library of America" presentation by Dan Cohen

  • video (1:27) [link]
  • slides (.pdf: 34.4MB/62 pp.) [link]
  • overview page [link]

DPLA [link]

Dan Cohen [link]

OCLC Research Distinguished Seminar Series [link]

OCLC Research YouTube Channel [link]