Data Librarian

Koerner Library, UBC Library | Vancouver Campus

Full-Time, One-Year Term

Anticipated Start Date: March 1, 2019 

UBC LIBRARY

The University of British Columbia Library is one of the largest academic libraries in Canada providing access to a collection of over 7M items. UBC Library has 14 branches and divisions on two campuses (Vancouver and Kelowna), including one off-site hospital library and the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre – a multi-purpose teaching and learning facility.

More than 300 knowledgeable employees – librarians, management and professional staff, support staff and student staff – provide users with the excellent resources and services that they need to further their research, teaching and learning.  The UBC Library Strategic Plan 2015-2017 can be viewed at http://about.library.ubc.ca/strategic-plan/  To learn more about working with UBC Library and to explore our aspirational values visit UBC Library – Why work with us.

POSITION SUMMARY

The Koerner Library and UBC Library Research Commons provide services and collections to support the research needs of students, faculty and staff, with a focus on the humanities and social sciences in the Koerner Library collections and services, and prioritization for graduate students in the interdisciplinary Research Commons.  The Data Librarian works within the Koerner Library while providing campus-wide service development and support across all departments and faculties, and in the Research Commons.

The Data Librarian provides expertise and leadership to support the current and evolving research needs at UBC, and in planning and developing library services related to the acquisition, discovery, use, and management of data resources and tools across a wide range of disciplines. The Data Librarian reviews, assesses and adapts data services in response to user needs, and provides specialised research, consultation and instruction to faculty and students in the use of data resources. The librarian provides web-based and classroom instruction and assistance in the use of data, and works in close collaboration with the Research Commons to provide oversight and delivery of workshops and consults on various aspects of data services, including data analysis, data visualization, specialized tools and software, and navigating data resources. The Data Librarian participates in the development of library policies and procedures, actively participates on library-wide committees and teams, and collaborates with colleagues within the Library, partners across campus and at other institutions, as well as with data providers.

QUALIFICATIONS:

Required:

  • A graduate degree from an accredited school of Library, Archival and Information Science
  • Knowledge of data issues in the research and knowledge creation lifecycle
  • Knowledge of current and relevant metadata standards, practices, and trends
  • Ability to identify, retrieve and use data resources as well as communicate knowledge to researchers with varying levels of technical expertise
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and experience with data analysis techniques and tools, including one or more of the following quantitative or qualitative software packages for data and statistical analysis: SPSS, Stata, R, SAS, NVivo, ATLAS.ti
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and experience with data visualization techniques and tools, including one or more of the following: D3.js, Tableau, Mathematica, R
  • Familiarity with Canadian census and demographic data
  • Experience in the provision of public services including reference, instruction, and liaison for academic and research communities
  • Demonstrated commitment to responsive and innovative library services; flexibility and willingness to assume a variety of responsibilities to meet evolving campus needs
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently, as well as collaboratively as a member of a team
  • Experience developing partnerships across a complex organization and a rapidly changing environment, and evidence of successful collaboration around the provision of programs and services
  • Excellent analytical, organizational, and planning skills
  • Demonstrated record of designing and leading projects and bringing them to conclusion in a timely fashion
  • Excellent interpersonal, written and verbal communication skills
  • Ability to recognize, respect and work effectively with individuals and groups with diverse perspectives and backgrounds; takes initiative in learning about language and issues relating to equity and diversity 

WORKING RELATIONSHIPS:

Reports to the Head, Koerner Library. In consultation with the Head, plans and implements data services for users.  Works collaboratively with the GIS Librarian, the Research Data Management Librarian, the Data/GIS Analyst, the Government Information Librarian and other librarians across UBC Library in the provision of services. A high degree of planning, collaboration and coordination with other faculty and staff in the Library and with campus and external partners is required, including with cIRcle, Digital Programs and Services, ARC and UBC IT staff. Works with faculty, staff, students and the public. Works with colleagues at other libraries on shared initiatives. May supervise the work of library staff and students in the provision of data services.

DUTIES:

Collection Development and Access 

  • Responsible for the ongoing development, management, maintenance and preservation of UBC Library data collections. Identifies and acquires data resources for inclusion in the Library’s collection, reviewing and acquiring new sources as necessary.  Reviews licenses and contracts for appropriate terms of agreement in cooperation with e-Resources staff as needed.   Coordinates with appropriate colleagues and committees to ensure ongoing assessment of data collections scope and value. 
  • Maintains knowledge of current and relevant metadata standards for data description, access and archiving. Provides oversight of metadata creation in collaboration with the Data/GIS Analyst, Technical Services colleagues, and metadata specialists. 
  • Collaborates with UBC IT to develop ongoing and easy access to data collections. Aligns with relevant data preservation policies and procedures in partnership with colleagues in Research Data Management and Digital Programs and Services.
  • Participates in initiatives related to the collection, organisation and maintenance of data products generated by university researchers and affiliates through liaison with the Research Data Management Librarian and the University’s institutional repository (cIRcle) as needed.
  • Serves as the data expert on relevant library-wide and University committees supporting content development and access.
  • Leads the development of data collection policies and participates in special projects

Reference, Instruction, and Liaison

  • Provides specialized research assistance, consultation, and support to students, faculty, staff, and other library users related to locating, acquiring, managing, analyzing, and visualizing data. Provides general research assistance, consultation, and support to users across disciplines in Koerner Library.
  • Teaches workshops on data topics, including data access and use. Creates new workshops in collaboration with liaison librarians on subject specific data needs, including data citation.  Provides course-integrated instruction upon request in assigned areas making use of data resources. 
  • Using the Library’s content management tools, develops and maintains a range of web-based resources to deliver information to users, including the creation of web pages, instructional materials, subject guides, and tutorials.
  • Participates in program development for services in the Research Commons. Designs, develops, and delivers workshops targeted to graduate students and faculty on topics such as data visualization, open and licensed data resources, and other data tools. Oversees the Research Commons data support services and tools, and supervises graduate student employees in the Research Commons in the development and delivery of workshops and consults.
  • Engages in a range of liaison and outreach activities across the UBC campus, including with Advanced Research Computing (ARC) and interested academic departments and individuals. Responsible for increasing visibility of available data resources and services through outreach efforts, and supports access and use of the resources. Promotes data resources and services provided by the Library through announcements, orientations, instruction, and collaboration with librarians and other research staff in support of researchers.
  • Liaises with data providers, professional groups, government organizations and research groups involved in the generation, dissemination, and preservation of datasets. Serves as a resource for Koerner Library and UBC Library, related academic departments, and other relevant campus units on issues related to data.  Serves as the Library’s representative to relevant individual and consortia data providers.

Technology and Space

  • In collaboration with the GIS Librarian, the Data/GIS Analyst and librarian colleagues, oversees ongoing planning, development and coordination of lab spaces providing specialized data tools and software. Leads ongoing assessment of space, hardware, software and associated technology needs for data. Collaborates with UBC IT staff to maintain and update lab hardware and software.
  • Stays abreast of the latest updates in data accessibility, software, hardware, and analysis and visualization techniques.

Assessment

  • Initiates and participates in needs assessment, design, implementation, and evaluation of the provision of the Library’s data services. Consults with the Assessment Librarian to undertake this work. 

Professional Development and Library Service

  • Participates in University, Library and campus planning activities, committees and task forces as appropriate. Participates in relevant conferences and meetings, and makes presentations where appropriate.  Assists with special projects or other temporary assignments as required. 

TERMS OF APPOINTMENT AND SALARY:

This position is a full-time, term appointment for one year.

We are seeking applications from Librarians with up to 5 years of experience.  However, all internal candidates will be considered regardless of years of experience and are encouraged to apply. Salary will be commensurate with experience and academic/professional qualifications.

Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence. An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

Applications will include: a detailed and current curriculum vitae; and a letter of application that includes a statement of citizenship/immigration status and indicates the candidate’s education, training and work experience in the areas listed above.  

To view the complete job description and to submit an application, please visit the UBC Careers page at http://www.hr.ubc.ca/careers-postings/faculty.php by midnight on January 20, 2019.

Digital Scholarship Librarian

Koerner Library, UBC Library | Vancouver Campus

Full-Time, Ongoing

Anticipated Start Date: March 1, 2019 

UBC LIBRARY

The University of British Columbia Library is one of the largest academic libraries in Canada and consistently ranks among the top university research libraries in North America. UBC Library has 14 branches and divisions, two campuses (Vancouver and Kelowna), one off-site hospital library, and the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre – a multi-purpose teaching and learning facility.

The Library’s collection of over 7M items includes 1.4M ebooks, 229,020 electronic journals, 850,000 maps, audio, DVD/video and graphic materials, and 1,703 bibliographic and fulltext databases.

More than 300 knowledgeable employees – librarians, management and professional staff, support staff and student staff – provide users with the excellent resources and services that they need to further their research, teaching and learning.  The UBC Library Strategic Plan 2015-2017 can be viewed at http://about.library.ubc.ca/strategic-plan/  To learn more about working with UBC Library and to explore our aspirational values visit UBC Library – Why work with us. 

POSITION SUMMARY

The Koerner Library and UBC Library Research Commons provide services and collections to support the research needs of students, faculty and staff, with a focus on the humanities and social sciences in the Koerner Library and prioritization for graduate students in the interdisciplinary UBC Library Research Commons.  The Digital Scholarship Librarian works within the Koerner Library while providing campus-wide service development and support across all arts, humanities and social sciences departments and in the Research Commons.

The Digital Scholarship Librarian establishes and develops a dynamic, multifaceted program that addresses the growing demand for digital arts, humanities and social sciences partnerships and support on campus. The librarian works closely with the UBC Library Research Commons, Digital Programs and Services, Advanced Research Computing (ARC), and other campus entities to identify innovative and evolving digital tools and resources that advance scholarly investigation in the arts, humanities and social science disciplines, while building on traditional research methodologies. The Digital Scholarship Librarian is a change agent, partner, and resource person for librarians and specialists involved in facilitating faculty and student digital projects and keeps abreast of the campus environment to identify emerging areas of interest. The Digital Scholarship Librarian also works as a subject librarian for assigned humanities or social sciences disciplines.

QUALIFICATIONS:

Required:

  • Graduate degree from an accredited school of Library, Archival and Information Science.
  • Education or experience in the arts, humanities or social sciences.
  • Strong information and digital literacy skills.
  • A proactive, user-centred vision of services and a commitment to responsive and innovative service practices.
  • Familiarity with research methodologies across a variety of arts, humanities and social science disciplines including emerging tools and technologies relevant to the production, dissemination and reception of research.
  • Experience with digital arts, humanities, and social science research tools and approaches (e.g., text mining, data analysis and visualization, image analysis, augmented reality), and the ability to provide research and consultation services to researchers with varying levels of technical expertise.
  • Knowledge of data issues in the research/knowledge creation lifecycle.
  • Experience developing and delivering instructional sessions, teaching workshops, and making presentations.
  • Familiarity with bibliographic management tools in academic institutions and trends in library collections.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively and develop partnerships with faculty, librarians, and others to advance digital arts, humanities and social sciences research, within and across a complex organization.
  • Demonstrated ability to initiate, plan and carry out projects both independently and as member of a team; flexibility, and willingness to assume a variety of assignments.
  • Open to experiment with and improvise new ways of approaching processes, tasks or problems.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills; models and demonstrates good communication through active listening and appreciative inquiry and open to providing and receiving timely, constructive feedback.
  • Ability to recognize, respect and work effectively with individuals and groups with diverse perspectives and backgrounds; takes initiative in learning about language and issues relating to equity and diversity.

Preferred:

  • Experience developing a multifaceted program for a multidisciplinary constituency.
  • An academic background or related experience in Digital Humanities, English or Journalism.
  • Programming or scripting experience for digital scholarship.
  • Experience with writing grant proposals.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead change.
  • Experience supervising staff.

WORKING RELATIONSHIPS:

Reports to the Head, Koerner Library. In consultation with the Head, plans and implements digital scholarship services for users. Consults and works collaboratively with colleagues both within the unit and across the UBC Library in the provision of services. A high degree of planning, collaboration and coordination is required with colleagues in the Library, including the Research Commons Librarian, Research Data Management Librarian, GIS and Maps Librarian, Assessment Librarian, as well as Scholarly Communications and Digital Programs and Services.  Actively collaborates beyond the Library with UBC IT staff, ARC, and other campus and external partners.  The Digital Scholarship Librarian will foster successful adoption and application of digital arts, humanities and social science approaches to research, teaching, and learning, in collaboration with faculty, students and librarians. Works in collaboration with UBC Collections Services to support the collections needs of assigned liaison area. May supervise the work of library staff and students in the provision of services.

DUTIES:

Digital Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

  • Provide expertise to arts, social sciences and humanities scholars and students on digital techniques and tools that will advance their research and the Library’s contributions to faculty and student research projects in the arts, humanities and social sciences
  • Serve as a strategist and resource person for the Library on trends in the digital arts and humanities. Provide support and regular training programs for the Library staff focused on digital arts and humanities.
  • Coordinate and disseminate information about digital scholarship in the arts on campus and connect scholars across disciplines to facilitate interdisciplinarity.
  • Identify and evaluate current and emerging digital tools and methodologies that support arts, humanities and social sciences scholars.
  • Develop strategies for collaboration, program planning, and support for interdisciplinary digital projects.
  • Conduct environmental scans of arts, humanities, and social science departments in conjunction with subject librarians and specialists to identify current and emerging scholarly projects for which digital tools and methodologies are appropriate.
  • Provide support and advice to the Music, Art and Architecture and Asian Libraries, and other branches as the need arises, in order to develop strategies focused on scholars’ digital production and curation needs.

Collection and Resource Development

  • Provide input and analysis into the selection, acquisition, and renewal of Library resources in print and electronic formats, with a focus on resources specific to the digital research environment in the arts, humanities, and social sciences.
  • Proactively ensure that collections meet information needs in assigned subject areas, and that digital research resources (e.g., text and data mining) meet the needs of arts, humanities and social sciences researchers.
  • Assist in special projects and the development of collection policies.

Reference, Instruction, Liaison

  • Serve as subject librarian for assigned humanities or social science disciplines.
  • Initiate and maintain strong working relationships and collaboration with faculty in assigned departments and subject areas. Collaborate with faculty on course-integrated instruction and deliver workshops for students in assigned liaison areas.
  • Develop and maintain web-based resources to deliver information to users, including the creation of web pages, instructional materials, subject and research guides, tutorials, and other learning objects, within assigned areas of responsibility.
  • Provide reference and research assistance to support users in assigned liaison areas, specialized research assistance and consultation in the digital humanities, and across disciplines in the humanities and social sciences in general.

Assessment and Management

  • Initiate and participate in needs assessment, design, implementation, and evaluation for the provision of services in areas of responsibility, and for the Library; consult with Assessment Librarian to undertake this work and engage in evidence-based decision-making.
  • Plan and implement services for users, or other activities as assigned, which may include supervision of staff and/or student employees.

Professional Development and Library Service

  • Participate in University, Library and campus planning activities, committees and task forces as appropriate.
  • Participate in relevant conferences and meetings and make presentations where appropriate.
  • Undertake, or assist with, special projects or other temporary assignments as required.

Current Awareness:

  • Remain current with research developments and literature in the areas of specialization through scanning of journal and other professional literature, monitoring of electronic sources, and engagement with scholars. 
  • Maintain expertise in electronic information resources and technologies. 
  • Keep current with changing professional expectations, services requirements, and developments in academic libraries. 

TERMS OF APPOINTMENT AND SALARY:

This position will be filled as a full-time, ongoing position. If eligible and qualified, the successful applicant may be appointed with a confirmed appointment. Otherwise, there will be an initial three-year probationary appointment.  Normally, such an appointment is reviewed by the end of the second year of the appointment, and a recommendation is made at that time to grant or not to grant a confirmed appointment.

Salary will be commensurate with experience and academic/professional qualifications.

We are seeking applications from Librarians with up to 5 years of experience.  However, all internal candidates will be considered regardless of years of experience and are encouraged to apply.

Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence. An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

Applications will include: a detailed and current curriculum vitae; and a letter of application that includes a statement of citizenship/immigration status and indicates the candidate’s education, training and work experience in the areas listed above.  

To view the complete job description and to submit an application, please visit the UBC Careers page at http://www.hr.ubc.ca/careers-postings/faculty.php by midnight on January 3, 2019.

 

 

 

The Koerner and Education libraries will be closed Saturday, June 9. Both libraries will reopen on Monday June 11 at 7:30 a.m. (Koerner Library) and 8 a.m. (Education Library) respectively.

Please refer to the Library Hours and Locations to make alternative plans.

Koerner Library will close for a few days in February due to construction.

The library will be closed on the following days:

  • Friday, February 10
  • Saturday, February 11
  • Sunday, February 12

The library will reopen after Family Day on Tuesday, February 14, 2017.

Irving K. Barber Learning Centre will remain open during these days. Please refer to the Library Hours & Locations to make alternative plans.

The Daily Hive highlights a number of Library spaces as ideal study spots at the University.

 

Shannon Selin and her novel Napoleon in America

After a successful and varied career that included non-fiction writing, university research, technical writing, and working for the Canadian government, UBC alumna Shannon Selin finally returned to her first love — writing fiction. Her first novel Napoleon in America imagines what might have happened if Napoleon Bonaparte had escaped from exile on St. Helena and wound up in the United States in 1821.  We spoke with Shannon about the extensive research she does for her books and how UBC Library and Collections have played a crucial role.

Which sources did you use in your research for Napoleon in America

UBC Library has been invaluable to my research. I write historical fiction set in Europe and North America in the early 1800s. Since I try to make my novels and short stories as believable as possible, I use only actual historical characters and embed them very carefully in the social, political and geographical context of the time. I am thus particularly interested in relevant letters, diaries, memoirs, travellers’ accounts and newspapers, as well as historical maps, paintings and drawings. In addition to standard books about European and North American history, the library has a marvelous selection of relatively obscure works that I was surprised to find in Vancouver. Three of my favourites are: Papiers Intimes et Journal du Duc de Reichstadt by Jean de Bourgoing, a collection of letters, diary entries and schoolwork by Napoleon Bonaparte’s son, who died at the age of 21; The Indians of Texas in 1830 by French naturalist Jean-Louis Berlandier, which includes gorgeous plates and descriptions of the native Americans Berlandier encountered during an 1828-29 expedition; and Mexico 1825-1828: The Journal and Correspondence of Edward Thornton Tayloe, the record of an American diplomat who had adroit powers of observation. The real “shivers up the spine” moment came when I was holding a letter from Napoleon, written in 1814, and three letters from the Duke of Wellington, written in 1824, all part of the Derek Lukin Johnston collection housed in Rare Books and Special Collections.

A letter dictated by Napoleon c 1814. Note his signature at the bottom right.

A letter dictated by Napoleon c 1814. Note his signature at the bottom right.

 

Do you use UBC’s Open Collections?

I do, particularly the Andrew McCormick Maps and Prints from RBSC, which has excellent 19th century maps of the British possessions in North America. Having online access to these resources is extremely helpful. I can zoom in to see features even more clearly than I could if I were viewing the maps in person.

Can you shed some light on your research-to-writing process?

For Napoleon in America, I started by reading a lot of books about Napoleon, particularly about his time on St. Helena. What physical shape was he in? What frame of mind was he in? If someone plucked him up and carried him away, what would he be likely to say and do? I then read up on the other characters who appear in the novel – people like the Duke of Wellington, Louis XVIII, Napoleon’s siblings, the Marquis de Lafayette, John Quincy Adams, pirate Jean Laffite, and the French officers who fled to the United States after Napoleon’s defeat at the Battle of Waterloo. Since the book moves between St. Helena, various European settings and North America, I also did research on each of these places in the early 1820s, to help me imagine what it might have been like to be there. As I read, I made notes on each topic and jotted down ideas of things that could happen in the book. Based on this, I came up with an outline of the plot, and then started drafting the novel. When questions came up as I was writing each chapter, I delved into more esoteric topics: early 19th-century medical practices, the history of voodoo in New Orleans, the diplomacy surrounding the Congress of Verona, etc. This in turn sparked more ideas for scenes in the book. It is really a continuous process, in which the research and writing are closely intertwined. For Napoleon in Texas, the sequel, I have six books from UBC Library open on my desk right now, looking at questions like: What plants and animals would one encounter on a trek between Laredo and San Antonio in the early 1820s? How long would the journey by horse take, compared to the journey by mule? What kind of kit would a Mexican officer be carrying?

Do you have a favourite spot or branch of UBC Library?

Given my interest in history, it’s probably no surprise to learn that my favourite place in the UBC Library is the part that remains from the old Main Library – what is now the Chapman Learning Commons. During my first summer at UBC, I worked as a research assistant to Professor Paul Marantz in the Political Science Department. Part of my job entailed making notes from books that could not be taken out of the Ridington Room. Not to be confused with the current room of that name, this was the old humanities and social sciences reading room, located in the north wing of the Main Library. I sat at one of the long wooden tables, with the light streaming through the high windows, surrounded by portraits of UBC chancellors and the smell of old books. It was peaceful and beautiful, and being in the heritage core of the library reminds me of that space.

Borrow Napoleon in America from UBC Library.

Follow Shannon’s writing at shannonselin.com. 

 

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