California Digital Library

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The California Digital Library (CDL) was founded by the University of California in 1997 to take advantage of emerging technologies that were transforming the way digital information was being published and accessed. Since then, in collaboration with the ten University of California Libraries and other partners, CDL has assembled one of the world’s largest digital research libraries and changed the ways that faculty, students, and researchers discover and access information. CDL facilitates the licensing of online materials and develops shared services used throughout the UC system. Building on the foundations of the Melvyl Catalog (UC’s union catalog), CDL has developed one of the largest online library catalogs in the country and works in partnership with the UC campuses to bring the treasures of California's libraries, museums, and cultural heritage organizations to the world. CDL continues to explore how services such as digital curation, scholarly publishing, archiving and preservation support research throughout the information lifecycle.[1]


The California Digital Library's mission is "to support the community’s pursuit of scholarship and to extend the University’s public service mission.[2]" The California Digital Library’s vision is to provide quality collections that are accessible to everyone, available in all digital formats, and available on a global scale. The California Digital Library believes it can make a difference by transforming research, teaching, and learning by exemplifying their values of innovation, collaboration, openness, sharing, privacy, and learning.


The California Digital Library (CDL) is a eleventh library for the University of California (UC). A collaborative effort of the ten campuses, organizationally housed at the University of California Office of the President, it is responsible for the design, creation, and implementation of systems that support the shared collections of the University of California. Several CDL projects focus on collaboration with other California Universities and organizations to create and extend access to digital material to UC partners and to the public at large.

The CDL is the result of a three-year planning process, beginning with the Digital Library Executive Working Group commissioned by Library Council and culminating with the Library Planning and Action Initiative commissioned by the Provost, which involved UC faculty, librarians, and administrators.

Access & Publishing Services[edit]

The Access & Publishing Group, comprising the Publishing and Digital Special Collections (DSC) teams, develops and maintains production services that enable robust access to the unique digital assets of the University of California and beyond. The Publishing team provides the University of California scholarly community with innovative digital publication and distribution opportunities through the development of advanced technologies and creative partnerships. The DSC team supports collaboration between libraries, archives, and museums throughout the State of California to provide access to a world class digital collection that serves an array of end users, from researchers and scholars to students and the general public.


eScholarship is a suite of open access scholarly publishing services and research tools that enable UC departments, research units, publishing programs, and individual scholars to have direct control over the creation and dissemination of their scholarship.

Online Archive of California (OAC)[edit]

The Online Archive of California (OAC) provides free public access to primary sources—including manuscripts, photographs, artwork, scientific data and more—through more than 38,000 collection guides and 200,000 digitized images and documents.


Calisphere is a free website that offers educators, students, and the public access to more than 200,000 primary sources such as photographs, documents, newspapers, political cartoons, works of art, diaries, transcribed oral histories, and other cultural artifacts. These materials reveal the diverse history and culture of California and its role in national and world history.

Collection Development and Management[edit]

The Collection Development and Management Program oversees and coordinates shared library collections on behalf of the ten University of California campuses. The program acquires scholarly content, manages UC's mass digitization efforts, organizes and supports shared physical library collections, and is responsible for the system-wide negotiation and licensing of shared digital materials for the UC libraries.

Licensed Resources[edit]

These are the electronic journals, databases, ebooks and other e-resources licensed by CDL on behalf of and in coordination with the ten UC campuses.

Shared Print[edit]

The University of California Libraries' Shared Print collections consist of information resources jointly purchased or electively contributed by the libraries. Such resources are collectively governed and managed by the University Librarians for the purpose of maximizing access to the widest audience of current and future members of the UC community.

Mass Digitization[edit]

The UC Libraries are digitizing millions of books from their collections through participation in mass digitization projects with Google, the Internet Archive, and the HathiTrust Digital Library. These projects expand the UC Libraries’ ability to give faculty, students and the public access to information and support our exploration of new service models.

Shared Cataloging[edit]

The Shared Cataloging Program (SCP) provides catalog records for the University of California campus libraries. Established in January 2000, the program is based at UC San Diego.

Discovery & Delivery[edit]

The focus of the CDL's Discovery and Delivery team is the integration of library services and resources in order to remove barriers between users and content.[3] The goal is to connect faculty, students, and staff with seamless access to the University of California libraries’ extensive research collections.[3]


Melvyl is the discovery platform for the UC Libraries. Melvyl, powered by OCLC WorldCat Local, offers seamless connection to the larger research world – the ability to search 800 million+ items from research institutions throughout the world.


UC-eLinks is a feature developed to make resource requesting ubiquitous and streamlined. The UC-eLink button is inserted, through personalized URL manipulation, into library catalogs, online databases, citation programs, and in the citations of articles themselves.[4] Users can then click on the button in order to access the associated publication, or request access if it is a print-only resource. Interlibrary loan requests can also be quickly made when selecting the ‘Request it’ option on the UC-eLinks menu.[5] Additionally, UC-eLinks has provided a new opportunity for the analysis of user's resource utilization and request patterns.


The Request service provides fast and convenient interlibrary loan (ILL) and document delivery service (DDS) to UC faculty, students, and staff. Users can access Request from Melvyl, UC-eLinks, PubMed, or via Citation Linker.

UC Curation Center (UC3)[edit]

UC3 helps researchers and the UC libraries manage, preserve, and provide access to their important digital assets.

Merritt Repository Service[edit]

Merritt is a new cost-effective repository service from the University of California Curation Center (UC3) that lets the UC community manage, archive, and share its valuable digital content.


EZID (easy-eye-dee) makes it easy to create and manage unique, persistent identifiers.


DMPTool helps researchers create and manage data management plans.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "California Digital Library". International Coalition of Library Consortia (ICOLC). Retrieved 28 June 2012. 
  2. ^ California Digital Library. "Mission, Vision, and Values". Retrieved 19 March 2014. 
  3. ^ a b California Digital Library. "Discovery & Delivery: What we do". 
  4. ^ California Digital Library. "What UC-eLinks Does". Retrieved 16 March 2014. 
  5. ^ Huwe, Terence (March 2004). "Convergence of Interlibrary Loan and Local Collections" (PDF). Computers in Libraries 3 (24). 

External links[edit]