University Librarian and Director of The John Rylands Library
Chris has previously been Director of Libraries at the University of London, University Librarian and Director of E-Learning at the University of Nottingham and Dean of Libraries at Dartington College of Arts. He has contributed to many boards and collaborative programmes in the UK, Ireland and in Europe for more than fifteen years and brings to Manchester particular interests in open scholarship, digital technologies and special collections.
In recent years, Christopher has authored the UK’s National Digitisation Review for Research Libraries UK (RLUK) and for Ireland’s Consortium of National and University Libraries, the first strategy for all of Ireland’s research libraries ‘Ireland’s Memory, Ireland’s Discovery.’
At London he co-edited two monographs on rare books and special collections and for six years was the Chair of Digital Research in the Humanities and Arts. At Nottingham he established the UK’s Centre for Research Communications and recently launched DCU Press, Ireland’s first open access university press.
Christopher is also the co-founder and co-chair of DART-Europe, the portal to over 600 European universities’ doctoral e-theses from 28 countries.
At Manchester he leads one of only five National Research Libraries in the UK, which contains more than four million printed books and manuscripts, over 41,000 electronic journals and 500,000 electronic books, as well as several hundred databases, making it one of the best-resourced academic libraries in the country.
As Director of the John Rylands Library he is responsible for one of the UK’s most historic and beautiful libraries, which contains one of the world’s finest collections of rare books and manuscripts. As one of the University’s cultural institutions more than 250,000 people visit and engage with the Library each year.