John Unsworth

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John Unsworth is the university librarian and dean of libraries at the University of Virginia, a position he has held since June 25, 2016.[1]


John Unsworth was born in 1958, in Northampton, Massachusetts. He graduated from Northampton High School in 1975, and attended Princeton University and Amherst College as an undergraduate, graduating from Amherst in 1981. He received a Master's degree in English from Boston University in 1982 and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Virginia in 1988.[2] [3] His first faculty appointment was in English, at North Carolina State University, from 1989 to 1993. In 1990, at North Carolina State University, he co-founded the first peer-reviewed electronic journal in the humanities, Postmodern Culture (now published by Johns Hopkins University Press, as part of Project Muse). He also organized, incorporated, and chaired the Text Encoding Initiative Consortium, co-chaired the Modern Language Association's Committee on Scholarly Editions, and served as President of the Association for Computers and the Humanities and later as chair of the steering committee for the Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations, as well as serving on many other editorial and advisory boards.

From 1993-2003, he was a faculty member in the English department at the University of Virginia, where he served as the first director of the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities.[4] From 2003-2012 he was the dean of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign and was also on the faculty of the English department.[5] From 2012-2016, he was the university librarian, vice provost, and chief information officer at Brandeis University. Unsworth was also a professor of English at Brandeis, teaching courses on the Digital Humanities and on 20th-century American bestsellers. In August 2013, the White House appointed Unsworth to the National Council on the Humanities, the advisory board of the National Endowment for the Humanities, a post he held through January 26, 2016.[6]



  1. ^ "UVA Selects John M. Unsworth as University Librarian and Dean of Libraries". Retrieved 27 June 2016. 
  2. ^ "About John Unsworth, CIO, LTS, Brandeis University". Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  3. ^ "John Unsworth biography, CV, publications". Graduate School of Library and Information Science, University of Illinois. Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  4. ^ "About John Unsworth, CIO, LTS, Brandeis University". Brandeis University. Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  5. ^ "Biographical Sketch: John M. Unsworth". University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  6. ^ Reiss, Jaclyn. "Brandeis Administrator tapped by White House to serve on national council". article. Retrieved 8 October 2013.