Penn Libraries News

Brigitte Weinsteiger Appointed Gershwind & Bennett Family Senior Associate Vice Provost for Collections and Scholarly Communications

Brigitte Weinsteiger

The University of Pennsylvania Libraries proudly announces the appointment of Brigitte Weinsteiger as Gershwind & Bennett Family Senior Associate Vice Provost for Collections and Scholarly Communications. This appointment reflects the expansion of Weinsteiger’s role since she was named Associate Vice Provost in 2020. A burgeoning area of focus in her new role is support for the Penn Libraries’ fundraising priorities for collections and information resources, which bolster the University's research, teaching, and learning mission. Weinsteiger will help build and grow endowments for the Libraries’ deep and distinctive collections, ensuring a strategic match between scholarly content needs and the resources necessary to address them. 

“Brigitte continues to propel the Penn Libraries to ever-greater impact and influence nationally and internationally,” says Constantia Constantinou, H. Carton Rogers III Vice Provost and Director of Libraries. “Under her leadership, we have made great strides in our strategic goals and fundraising priorities to advance information equity and ensure access to the scholarly and cultural record in all forms. I look forward to working with Brigitte even more closely in her new role to advance collections and scholarly communications as we carry out the shared vision of the Penn Libraries strategic plan.” 

Weinsteiger has been consistently recognized in the library system for her ability to manage large, complex projects from ideation to fundraising to implementation. She leads a team of 115 staff, in addition to 200 students and interns, with direct oversight of the Libraries’ information budget of $27 million.  

“It is my distinct privilege to lead our talented Penn Libraries staff in building and providing access to collections and library services that contribute to global scholarship and local engagement,” Weinsteiger says. “I am honored by this opportunity to further awareness of the Libraries’ incredible impact on the Penn community and the world, and to bring a dynamic collections-focused perspective to fundraising endeavors.”  

As Senior Associate Vice Provost, Weinsteiger will continue to lead a diverse portfolio of areas, including Collection Strategy, encompassing the collection development and assessment programs; Preservation, including the Steven Miller Conservation Laboratory, Physical Processing, the Exhibits program, and Digital Preservation; Scholarly Communications, including the Author Services and Copyright Advisory programs; Academic Engagement, including the Liaison program and support for Teaching and Learning, as well as support for Penn First Plus students; Community Engagement, encompassing the Libraries’ outreach to the local school district and literacy initiatives in Philadelphia; and Research Services, comprised of Research Support, Digital Fabrication, Bibliometrics, Bioinformatics, and a robust Systematic Reviews program. 

She also has oversight of the Penn Libraries’ 10 departmental libraries, directing personnel, facilities, access services, and operations at these locations across campus. These include the Lippincott Library of the Wharton School, the Fisher Fine Arts Library, the Albrecht Music Library, the Penn Museum Library, the Biotech Commons, the Levy Dental Medicine Library, two Veterinary Medicine Libraries, the Chemistry Library, and the Math/Physics/Astronomy Library.  

Weinsteiger’s prior leadership roles at the Penn Libraries include Gershwind & Bennett Family Associate Vice Provost for Collections and Scholarly Communications, Associate University Librarian for Collections, and Assistant University Librarian for Collections and Liaison Services. Before moving into Penn Libraries’ administration in 2016, she served as a collections analyst and a subject librarian for medieval studies and Germanic languages and literatures. 

In her time at Penn, Weinsteiger’s vision has positioned the Libraries to provide collections, expertise, and services across several areas. She has advanced, both locally and nationally, sustainable models for scholarly communications and partnered with Penn faculty and publishers on long-term, mutually viable solutions to sustaining a healthy publishing enterprise. She serves on the advisory boards for many prominent publishing and distribution vendors, including JSTOR, Project MUSE, and EBSCO Books. At Penn, Weinsteiger is a founding member of the Faculty Senate Select Committee on Scholarly Communications. 

Among the priorities Weinsteiger has championed at Penn is the preservation of global scholarship and cultural heritage; in particular, the histories, perspectives, personal narratives, and cultural contributions of populations around the world, many of whom have historically been overlooked or underrepresented. She has endeavored to increase the diversity and inclusiveness of the Libraries’ collections and engagement with the Penn and Philadelphia communities, launching the Diversity in the Stacks initiative and, most recently, instituting the new Center for Global Collections. 

Beyond Penn, Weinsteiger represents the University in a number of consortia and committees. She regularly collaborates with the Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc. (PALCI); the NorthEast Research Libraries consortium (NERL); the HathiTrust; the Center for Research Libraries; and the Ivy Plus Libraries. Through Ivy Plus, she has contributed to the work of the 13 partners to collectively, but strategically, amass the largest distinctive collection in the world. 

Weinsteiger holds a master’s degree in liberal arts, focusing in medieval studies, from the University of Pennsylvania; a master’s degree in library and information science from Drexel University; and two bachelor’s degrees from the Pennsylvania State University, where she concentrated in medieval studies, the history of art, and German literature.