UBC Library, Vancouver Campus

(Full-time, ongoing General Librarian position with 5 year renewable Head term)

Anticipated Start Date: February 1, 2018


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 full-text 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.  To learn more about working with UBC Library and to explore our aspirational values visit http://about.library.ubc.ca/work-with-us/why-work-with-us/.


The Xwi7xwa Library is located on the ancestral and unceded territory of the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓-speaking Musqueam people.  It is adjacent to the UBC’s First Nations House of Learning, (FNHL) and is the only separate library dedicated to Indigenous collections and services at an academic institution in Canada. An agreement outlines the relationship between the First Nations House of Learning and Library. Xwi7xwa Library’s work is guided by the UBC Library strategic plan, the 2009 UBC Aboriginal Strategic Plan, ongoing University initiatives, and responses to the Calls to Action in the report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

The Xwi7xwa Library is a world leader in the effective organization and respectful use of Indigenous knowledge and information in academic inquiry. The Library is key to developing UBC’s capacity for advanced work in Indigenous studies and engagement by providing expert staff, unique collections and collaborative space for supporting respectful academic inquiry through teaching, research, and community partnerships.

The Xwi7xwa Library provides leadership and support across the UBC Library to develop improved access to collections and services that support Indigenous perspectives in all fields of study and research and to further the development of the skills to do so in all units of UBC Library. In collaboration with UBC Library Technical Services, Xwi7xwa Library leads in the development of descriptive systems that are based in Indigenous Knowledge Organization, an evolving and emergent area of research and operations. The Library fosters collaborative relationships with Indigenous programs and services at UBC and works closely with the Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre, other academic units, and community partners to ensure respectful access to materials and critical understanding of Canadian and Indigenous history.

Through building and maintaining relationships with a vibrant network of current and former faculty, staff and students, the Xwi7xwa Library connects the intellectual life of the campus with diverse communities, and serves as a facilitator to many longstanding collaborative knowledge-based projects and initiatives.  Community scholars and educators entrust Xwi7xwa Library with locally developed resources, which form many of the unique materials in the collection.  Xwi7xwa Library has an active and well-regarded profile in public programming at the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre and other venues that helps to increase campus awareness of Indigenous issues and their relevance, depth, and complexity. The Library participates with the Museum of Anthropology, the Barber Centre, the First Nations House of Learning and many other campus units and community partners in information dissemination and service initiatives. 

Xwi7xwa Library has a close relationship with the First Nations Curriculum Concentration, (FNCC) in the iSchool. It draws students from FNCC to work as graduate academic assistants while at the same time acting as a draw for applicants to the iSchool. The Library actively supports FNCC students by participating in the experiential learning programs offered at the iSchool – through hosting class visits and guest lecturing, as well as offering co-op placements, professional, and practicum experiences.

The Xwi7xwa Library has an important and ongoing role in strategic initiatives in Indigenous research and knowledge organization, and the role of Head Librarian is critical to that function. The nature and scope of this position are expected to change as Indigenous studies, the Library’s organizational structure, and the Library’s strategic position evolve. For more information see the Branch website at http://xwi7xwa.library.ubc.ca/.


The Head, Xwi7xwa Library, is responsible for providing strategic leadership for people, services and operations including the development of collections, services, and user spaces and is charged with positioning the Xwi7xwa Library as a vital resource in advancing Indigenous scholarship at the University and beyond. The scope of this position includes the organization, administration, and operation of the Xwi7xwa Library, for the development of its collection, for the provision of effective reference, instructional, and circulation services, and for outreach to partners on and off campus, and to Indigenous and library communities and organizations in Canada and abroad.



  • A graduate degree from an accredited school of Library, Archival and Information Science.
  • An undergraduate degree in a subject area relevant to Indigenous studies or equivalent knowledge gained through professional experience in relevant subject areas.
  • A nuanced understanding of Indigenous histories, initiatives and subject materials.
  • Demonstrated understanding of the experiences of Indigenous people and communities and experience working with Indigenous people and communities.
  • Demonstrated effective administrative, management and leadership skills developed and demonstrated by progressively responsible work experiences.
  • Managerial and supervisory experience.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills.
  • Experience in managing a complex budget.
  • Dedicated to cultivating an inclusive environment that recognizes barriers faced by people and encourages and incorporates contributions from diverse groups and individuals.
  • Contributes to the Library’s sense of community and achievement of common goals through cooperation across units and encouragement of equitable and balanced involvement in decision making.
  • Promotes and fosters a supportive and open environment built on appreciation, recognition, learning and professional growth.
  • Works to build a team environment built on positive working relationships, provides guidance and resources to teams while trusting them to excel.


  • A graduate degree with an Indigenous focus.
  • Experience with knowledge-based description systems such as Brian Deer Classification and subject headings used in an Indigenous context.
  • Relevant professional experience, familiarity with bibliography, faculty-library liaison, electronic services, collection development and library instruction.
  • Experience in leading, developing and implementing strategic priorities, preferably within a large academic research library.

WORKING relationships:

The Head, Xwi7xwa Library works under the general direction of and is responsible to the University Librarian, or designate, and the Director of the First Nations House of Learning.  The Head supervises a team comprising a public services librarian, an Aboriginal engagement librarian in a position shared with the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, two support staff and several part-time graduate academic assistants. The Head consults with the appropriate AUL/Manager/Director/Head concerning the budget for collections, ordering and processing of Library materials, and collection development and preservation; financial and facilities matters; systems issues; human resources; and development.  The Head cooperates with the Heads of other branches and divisions in the provision of services and the development of collections, and ensures that relevant issues are discussed with the Director, the Associate Director, or other administrators within the First Nations House of Learning.  The Head consults with other members of the UBC Library, First Nations House of Learning, community members, and an advisory committee.  The Head also works with relevant external organizations and community partners. 

The nature and scope of this position are expected to change as Indigenous studies, the Library’s organizational structure, and the Library’s strategic position evolve.


  1. Provides vision and leadership for the Xwi7xwa Library operation and services. Develops and implements strategies, goals, and objectives that support the UBC Aboriginal Strategic Plan and UBC Library’s strategic plan, and are responsive to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) Calls to Action. Creates a supportive environment for the librarians and CUPE staff in Xwi7xwa Library. Plans for staff development and training by determining the needs of the unit including individual staff needs. Allocates time for training and development.
  2. Assesses the needs of Xwi7xwa Library users by consulting broadly with UBC’s Indigenous community and faculty, researchers, staff and students engaged in First Nations research and scholarship. Maintain knowledge of curriculum changes, program development, and new areas of research. Develop programs and services in response to expressed needs.
  3. Establishes develops and works with a Library Advisory Committee comprised of key stakeholders.
  4. Sets and implements branch priorities. Plans, organizes and manages the people, services and operation of Xwi7xwa Library to enable the successful fulfilment of the Library’s and UBC’s mission and vision regarding Indigenous peoples.
  5. Plans, develops and manages the Xwi7xwa Library operating budgets annually. Develops a programs-based budget for the FNHL funds. Allocates and monitors resources by setting unit priorities, allocating funds/human resources and monitoring expenditures.
  6. Reviews curriculum changes and program development, maintaining liaison with faculty and participating in departmental and faculty meetings as invited.
  7. Develops collections policies, determines the scope of the collection, and selects and orders materials. Oversees Xwi7xwa special collections and archives in conjunction with Rare Books and Special Collections and University Archives.
  8. Works with UBC Library Technical Services in the development of descriptive systems that are based in Indigenous Knowledge Organization.
  9. Develops and maintains a plan for collection curation that maximizes the strategic value of the Xwi7xwa Library building and leverages relationships with other facilities to support collection distribution as required.
  10. Oversees and participates in the provision of reference, circulation, cataloguing and instructional services.
  11. Evaluates existing services, adjusts priorities, allocates human resources and seeks funding as appropriate.
  12. Develops and maintains a good knowledge of Indigenous issues, concerns, and programs to ensure that the Xwi7xwa Library continues to meet the needs of UBC faculty, staff, and students, and Indigenous communities and organizations, and groups and individuals with an interest in Indigenous issues.
  13. Liaises with Indigenous groups to develop Indigenous library and information sciences capacity and provides professional and technical advice as appropriate. Provides leadership to Indigenous librarians, archivists, information managers, and researchers by participation in Indigenous and information management organizations.
  14. Supports fundraising initiatives for the Xwi7xwa Library and participates in the preparation of grant requests and administration of grants. Initiates involvement with the Library Development Office as appropriate opportunities occur.
  15. Participates in professional and university wide initiatives.
  16. Performs other duties as required.



This position will be filled as a full-time, ongoing General Librarian position with a five year renewable administrative term as Head, Xwi7xwa Library. 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.

Indigenous persons 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 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; a detailed and current curriculum vitae.

To view the complete job description and to submit an application, please visit the UBC Careers page by midnight on December 10, 2017.

Job ID:  28182

Position No:  00046086

Anticipated Start Date:  January 1, 2018





Advances the Open Scholarship portfolio at the University of British Columbia, with a focus on initiatives that will launch on the Okanagan campus. Open Scholarship aims to promote reproducibility and integrity in research and to increase its quality through robust replicable methods and clear, transparent, and open reporting.

Provides reference and information services to faculty, students and other users in UBC’s Okanagan campus Library.  Assumes responsibility for designated subject areas and liaison with assigned departments.  Provides web-based and classroom instruction and assistance in use of information resources.  Plans and implements services that respond to needs of users in UBC’s Okanagan campus Library.  Participates in the development of Library policy, procedures and services.  Assumes responsibility for coordination and management of staff, services and projects, as required.  Evening and weekend work may be required.  The nature and scope of responsibilities for this and other Library positions are expected to change as the Library organization evolves.  Evening and weekend work will be required. The nature and scope of responsibilities for this and other Library positions are expected to change as the Library organization evolves.



  • Required: A graduate degree from an accredited school of Library, Archival and Information Science; knowledge of library systems and applications; demonstrated competencies in reference and instructional methodologies in an academic, or research setting, with an emphasis on evidence based practice; excellent organizational and analytical skills; excellent written and oral communication skills including the ability to communicate at a distance; proven ability to work well independently and within large and complex teams; commitment to developing professional knowledge and skills on a continuing basis. Some weekend and evening work may be required.
  • Preferred: Academic library experience; a background working in science librarianship and with emerging technologies; e-resource acquisition; knowledge of Open Science and Open Scholarship more broadly, including tools that support its effective implementation.



Reports to the Associate Chief Librarian at UBC’s Okanagan campus Library.  Coordinates activities with other librarians at UBC’s Okanagan campus and collaborates with librarians throughout the UBC Library.  May be requested to act on behalf of the Associate Chief Librarian at UBC’s Okanagan campus Library. Works closely with colleagues in other units within UBC.  Works with faculty, students, staff and the public.



Open Scholarship:

  1. Coordinates and provides support for Open Scholarship educational initiatives.
  2. Engages in outreach activities across both campuses, as well as with professional and scholarly associations, and with national and international colleagues and organizations promoting Open Scholarship strategies.
  3. Assists in the support and development of tools and infrastructure to further UBC’s goals in the area of Open Scholarship.
  4. Serves as a member of UBC’s Open Science Task Force and chairs two related working groups.
  5. Consults with stakeholders to define, implement, and assess 2-3 additional strategic and scalable projects relating to Open Scholarship.

Reference and Research Services:

  1. Provides reference and research services to UBC’s Okanagan campus students, staff and faculty members as well as collaborates with UBC’s Vancouver campus Librarians to provide services to all UBC faculty, staff and students and members of the public, as required.
  2. Provides training and back-up for Library Services Assistants.
  3. Works with other staff to develop and maintain the UBC’s Okanagan Campus Library presence on the UBC Library web pages and throughout UBC, as appropriate.
  4. As the librarian responsible for particular subjects, advises and assists in difficult or extensive searches in these areas. Employs the full range of Internet, electronic and print resources, as required.

Teaching and Orientation:

  1. Teaches classes in the use of the Library’s resources, including the Library’s catalogue, print resources and e-resources. May also provide instruction in the use of software that assists users in managing the results of their information retrieval process.
  2. Undertakes specialized instructional programs and workshops including planning, designing and organizing and using various formats for presentation.
  3. Participates in orientation tours and Library-use instruction programs.
  4. Prepares handouts, research guides and informational brochures in collaboration with UBC’s Vancouver campus Library.
  5. Provides instruction/presentations to faculty, students, and community members (in the Library, online and in the faculty departments).

Faculty Liaison:

  1. Initiates and maintains contact with faculty in assigned departments.
  2. Liaises with faculty on issues of copyright, collection development and management, and on issues related to properly archiving research outputs.
  3. Works with faculty on the development and delivery of information and research modules, services and courses or workshops and course readings for students at UBC’s Okanagan campus.
  4. Attends faculty meetings and events and participates in faculty committees in designated subject areas as appropriate.
  5. Responds to requests from faculty for Library involvement in accreditation, new course proposals, etc., in consultation with the Associate Chief Librarian.

Collection Development and Management:

  1. Responsible for the selection of new resources in designated subject areas for the Library at UBC’s Okanagan campus in consultation with other UBC Librarians and departmental representatives.
  2. Participates in the development and application of criteria for the review of electronic subscriptions, transfer of print materials to storage and for weeding.
  3. In consultation with other UBC Librarians, participates in the evaluation of potential gifts-in-kind to the Library at UBC’s Okanagan campus.
  4. Participates in the monitoring and maintenance of UBC’s Okanagan campus Library reference collection.

Supervision and Administration:

  1. May be required to supervise staff.
  2. May be required to act as Associate Chief Librarian in their absence.
  3. May be required to develop and manage budgets related to their assigned responsibilities.

Library Liaison:

  1. Represents the UBC Okanagan campus Library on Library committees, working groups and task forces.
  2. Liaises with Librarians in other areas of the UBC Library system.
  3. Maintains an awareness of new literature and research developments in areas of specialization and emerging trends in academic libraries.
  4. Keeps abreast of developments in public services across UBC Library and more widely.

Other Activities:

  1. Identifies best practices and implements as appropriate.
  2. Participates in professional and university-wide initiatives.
  3. Seeks funding opportunities and completes grant applications within UBC’s Okanagan campus Library portfolio and in collaboration with UBC’s Vancouver campus as appropriate.
  4. Performs other duties as assigned.



  • Provision of competent, professional library services.
  • Effective, co-operative working relationships with support staff, colleagues and management at UBC’s Okanagan campus and, more generally, across UBC.
  • Flexible, innovative approaches to problem solving.
  • Effective focus on important issues and demonstrated ability to balance a multitude of responsibilities.
  • Current knowledge of Library policies, practices and procedures and appropriate interpretation of these to staff and users.
  • Effective application of current developments in information resources.


To apply for this position, please visit the Faculty Careers page (Job ID 28182) by 11:59 p.m. on December 8.


Please direct your questions to:

Lois Marshall

Manager, Planning and Operations | Library

The University of British Columbia | Okanagan Campus

3333 University Way, Kelowna, BC  V1V 1V7

Or by e-mail to lois.marshall@ubc.ca



UPDATE! Science Direct is tweeting that the issue is resolved. If you are still having problems:

  1. clear the history (cache & coolies) from your browser and try again
  2. report via the Help Form below if problems continue

The ScienceDirect platform from Elsevier is experiencing intermittent problems.

Sometimes there is an error message “Sorry, your request cannot be processed…” sometimes a log-in screen.

We are working on a solution. Please report any problems to our Help Form.


Many thanks to guest blogger Ashlynn Prasad for contributing the below post! Ashlynn is a graduate student at UBC’s School School of Library, Archival and Information Studies and the curator of our new exhibition of photographs from the Uno Langmann Family Collection of B.C. Photographs.

When I first began perusing the Uno Langmann Family Collection of B.C. Photographs, which is available for public viewing in Rare Books and Special Collections in the Irving K. Barber Learning Center, and digital copies of which can be found online, I approached the photographs with the awareness that many of them were between 100 and 150 years old, and I therefore began the project with the expectation of finding photographic evidence of how much British Columbian scenery and landmarks have changed in the past century, after rapid advancements in technology as well as continuing urban development.

While I did find evidence of change, I was surprised to also find that many of the landmarks closely associated with British Columbia have varied very little in appearance in the past century. I got the sense while looking through the photographs that certain images, though they were taken up to 150 years ago in some cases, could have been taken a mere few days ago. With this in mind, I designed the exhibition in the spirit of a before-and-after, except that instead of juxtaposing new images with old images, I juxtaposed turn-of-the-century images with each other, showing on the one hand images which seem dated (from a modern observer’s perspective) and on the other hand images that look quite familiar. For a more traditional before-and-after comparison, please see below for contemporary versions of the scenes depicted in the exhibition.

Something else that I tried to keep in mind during the curation of this exhibition was the audience to which the photographs would likely be exposed while on display in Ike’s Café. On a personal note, I was born in the lower mainland and spent the earlier half of my life here, before moving to the United States and spending the latter half there. Because of this, I found myself tangentially familiar with a lot of the names I encountered during the curation of the exhibition, and in some instances the scenes in the images themselves were also intimately familiar to me. However, having been away for so long, I also had to do quite a bit of Google Maps searching of place names that would likely be extremely familiar to someone who had spent their entire life here.

I tried to keep in mind that the individuals coming through the café will have varying levels of familiarity with British Columbian landmarks – some will know them well, some will be experiencing them for the first time, and many will fall somewhere in between. I tried to curate an exhibition that could appeal to people at any position on the spectrum by showcasing landmarks that are generally quite well known, and which a large majority of people – even if they’re completely new to the area – will at least have heard of, such as Stanley Park or Fraser River. This way, the exhibition is ostensibly capable of drawing an emotional response from almost anyone, whether that’s the curiosity and nostalgia of seeing a turn-of-the-century version of a place one knows very well, or whether that’s a piqued interest in a place one has never seen before. For at least some of the photographs, I hope we can all enjoy the intrigue of noticing how much has changed in the last 100 years, and perhaps even more so, how much has not.

– Ashlynn Prasad, Exhibition Curator and MAS/MLIS Candidate at the University of British Columbia


You probably know that November 11th is Remembrance Day. Xwi7xwa Library will be closed on Monday November 13th to commemorate this and to honour members of the armed forces who died in the line of duty.

November 8th is not a federal holiday and but the date is still important. This is Aboriginal Veterans Day, a date set aside to mark the thousand of Indigenous, Metis and Inuit people who fought and died for this land. Indigenous voices are too easily lost amidst the poppies and parades, yet one Veterans group estimates that 12,000 Indigenous people served in the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War.[1]

We’re proud to hold some of these stories in our collection and to be able to highlight them this week.  Please visit Xwi7xwa Library to discover further titles and find out more.


[1] ‘Indigenous Veterans’. Veteran Affairs Canada. Retrieved from http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/remembrance/those-who-served/indigenous-veterans


UBC’s Day of Learning took place on Tuesday, October 10, 2017. The event marked the 75th anniversary of Japanese-Canadian internment and the 5th anniversary of the UBC Honorary Degree Ceremony for the 76 Japanese Canadian students expelled in 1942.

The day-long event was comprised of four sessions, and the Asian Library had the privilege to be a co-organizer for the afternoon workshop entitled “Stories on Organizing Against Injustice.” We had six Japanese-Canadian community members who shared their lived experiences in small group settings. There were approximately 60 participants including UBC students, alumni, faculty members, staff, and community members. The participants commented on how unique this opportunity was, to be able to engage in inter-generational conversations.

The UBC Day of Learning was made possible with the support of different units across UBC and community partners. Check out the video recordings of the other three workshops at the Day of Learning website.

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

UBC Library





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