updated 11/30/2006 3:29:29 PM ET 2006-11-30T20:29:29

One of the nation’s most prominent research centers on civil rights is moving to the University of California, Los Angeles and will expand its focus to include immigration and language discrimination, the California school said.

The Civil Rights Project, now at Harvard University, will be renamed the Civil Rights Project/El Proyecto de CRP when it moves to the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies in January. Its reports will be issued in Spanish and English.

Founded in 1996, the project’s affirmative action research was cited by the U.S. Supreme Court in a 2003 decision approving limited consideration of race in university admissions.

Gary Orfield, co-founder and director of the Civil Rights Project, will join the UCLA staff. Orfield recently married Patricia C. Gándara, a professor at University of California, Davis, who specializes in issues relating to Latinos and education. She will become a co-director of the project.

“Los Angeles is at the epicenter of the nation’s racial transformation,” Orfield said, calling that another motivation for the move.

He also said UCLA offered more generous support for the project than Harvard.

Harvard officials lamented Orfield’s departure but said some faculty attrition was inevitable.

“Professor Orfield will be missed. Harvard has been very supportive of the work and mission of the Civil Rights Project, and will continue to be supportive of other efforts in these areas at the university,” Harvard spokesman John Longbrake said.

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