Richard Ovenden

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Richard Ovenden
Richard Ovenden at Weston Library Opening 20March2015.jpg
Richard Ovenden in 2015
Born (1964-03-25) 25 March 1964 (age 57)
EducationDeal Parochial and Sir Roger Manwood's School, Kent and at St Chad's College

Richard Ovenden OBE FSA FRSA (/ˈʌvəndən/; born 25 March 1964) is a British librarian and author. He currently serves as Bodley's Librarian in the University of Oxford, having been appointed in 2014.[1] Ovenden also serves as the Director of the Bodleian Library's Centre for the Study of the Book and holds a Professorial Fellowship at Balliol College.[2] Ovenden is a trustee of the Chawton House Library[3] and vice-chair of the Kraszna-Krausz Foundation.[4] In 2009, he was elected chair of the Digital Preservation Coalition, replacing Dame Lynne Brindley in a post he held until 2013.[5][6] He was elected to the American Philosophical Society in 2015.[7] He is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London, having been elected in 2008.[8]

Early life[edit]

Ovenden was educated at Deal Parochial and Sir Roger Manwood's School, Kent and at St Chad's College, Durham University, graduating in 1985.


He has worked at Durham University Library, the House of Lords Library, the National Library of Scotland and at the University of Edinburgh, where he was responsible for Collection Management within the Library, for Special Collections and Archives, and for the University Museums and Art Gallery.

In 2003 he became Keeper of Special Collections and Western Manuscripts at the Bodleian Libraries[9][10] and in 2011 was appointed Deputy Librarian.

Ovenden is the author of John Thomson (1837–1921): photographer (1997), a study of the Scottish photographer. He has also written Burning the Books (John Murray),[11] which was shortlisted for the 2021 Wolfson History Prize.[12]

He was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2019 Birthday Honours for services to libraries and archives.[13]


  1. ^ "Bodley's Librarian". University of Oxford Gazette. 13 February 2014. Retrieved 13 February 2014.
  2. ^ Meet Bodley's Librarian
  3. ^ "Trustees, Staff and Patrons", Accessed 16 February 2016
  4. ^ "People" Accessed 16 February 2016
  5. ^ "New Year - and New Chair for DPC: Richard Ovenden" Digital Preservation Coalition Accessed 16 February 2016
  6. ^ "Richard Ovenden" Archived 2016-01-11 at the Wayback Machine Balliol College, Oxford. Accessed 16 February 2016
  7. ^ "Richard Ovenden" Oxford University. Accessed 16 February 2016
  8. ^ "Fellows Directory" Accessed 16 February 2016.
  9. ^ Tim Radford (11 December 2003), "£3m gift that could help save Frankenstein for the nation", The Guardian
  10. ^ Priceless Bible goes on display, BBC News, 3 March 2004
  11. ^ [1]; The Guardian; accessed 2020-09-02
  12. ^ "Shortlist announced for £40k Wolfson History Prize". Books+Publishing. 3 May 2021. Retrieved 3 May 2020.
  13. ^ "No. 62666". The London Gazette (Supplement). 8 June 2019. p. B13.

Further reading[edit]

  • Oxford Online. First Author. 24 August 2007. Interview with Ovenden about the Bodleian Library's digitisation programs and its partnerships with Google