Bio

dan_cohen_bio_page_photo_300pxI’m the founding Executive Director of the Digital Public Library of America, which is bringing together the riches of America’s libraries, archives, and museums, and making them freely available to the world.

Until 2013 I was a Professor of History in the Department of History and Art History at George Mason University and the Director of the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media. My personal research has focused on the impact of new media and technology on all aspects of knowledge, from the nature of digitized resources to twenty-first century research techniques and software tools to the changing landscape of communication and publication.

I’m co-author of  Digital History: A Guide to Gathering, Preserving, and Presenting the Past on the Web (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2005), author of Equations from God: Pure Mathematics and Victorian Faith (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2007), and co-editor of  Hacking the Academy (University of Michigan Press, 2012). I have published articles and book chapters on new media, the history of mathematics and religion, the teaching of history, scholarly communication, and the future of the humanities in a digital age in journals such as the Journal of American History, Victorian Studies, and Rethinking History. My work and thought has been featured frequently in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and Times Higher Education.

I was an inaugural recipient, in 2006, of the American Council of Learned Societies’ Digital Innovation Fellowship. In 2011 I received the Frederick G. Kilgour Award from the American Library Association, and in 2016 I was given the LITA/Library Hi Tech Award for Outstanding Communication for Continuing Education in Library and Information Science. In 2012 I was named one of the top “tech innovators” in academia by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

At the Digital Public Library of America, I have led initiatives that maximize access to our shared culture, including Open Ebooks, a program with President Obama and nonprofit partners that provides thousands of award-winning ebooks for free to millions of in-need children. At the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media I oversaw projects ranging from PressForward to the September 11 Digital Archive to the popular Zotero research tool.

I received my bachelor’s degree from Princeton, a master’s from Harvard, and my doctorate from Yale. (See my CV for a complete record of my career.)