The mission of the Ernst Mayr Library is to provide and preserve information resources and services to support the research and teaching activities of the Harvard University community, especially the science community. Particular attention is paid to users in the Museum of Comparative Zoology (MCZ), the Departments of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology (OEB) and Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB) and others in the Museum complex. The Library is committed to being a leading resource in the fields of natural history, zoology, paleontology, biodiversity, comparative biology, evolution and ecology, and strongly supporting molecular biology, cell biology, developmental biology, neuroscience, genetics and bioinformatics.
The Library serves all members of the Harvard University community. In particular, the Library serves the undergraduate population of Harvard, graduate students, staff and faculty of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, the Departments of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology and Molecular and Cellular Biology. Additionally, the Library is a resource for scholars conducting research in the fields of natural history and zoology.The general public may also use the Library with restrictions. The Library staff has specialized expertise for users (faculty, graduate students, undergraduate students, staff and researchers) in the Museum of Comparative Zoology (MCZ), the Departments of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology (OEB) and Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB) and others in the Northwest complex.
The long-term vision for the Ernst Mayr Library anticipates fewer boundaries among subject-restricted libraries and among formats of materials. Cooperation and resource sharing are coordinated within and outside of Harvard University to ensure efficient and effective provision of resources. Resources and services are evaluated on an on-going basis to guarantee responsiveness to the information needs of the users.
The staff of the Ernst Mayr Library collaborates across the Harvard University Library system. Every regular staff member participates in at least one, and often several, Harvard library-wide committees, task forces and roundtables each year. We have been consistent providers of documents for the Scan & Deliver service across the library system. Ernst Mayr Library librarians provide bibliographic instruction and classes in tools such as Endnote along with HCL and faculty librarians across the campus. Several staff members are active in the Virtual Reference and the HCL-provided LibGuides services. Staff members also participate in GSAS library orientation activities outside the department and library promotions at freshman events.