Position Description: University Librarian
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Boston University Libraries seeks a transformational leader who will re-envision a 21st century hybrid library with an advanced capacity to support research teaching and learning across geographic, language, and disciplinary borders, leveraging innovations in digital and information technology. S/he will lead BU’s Mugar Memorial Library and branches (currently African Studies, Astronomy, Music, Visual Arts, Science and Engineering, Stone Science, Pickering Educational Resources, and the Frederick S. Pardee Management Library) in collaboration with the Fineman and Pappas Law Libraries, the School of Theology Library, the Alumni Medical Library, and the Howard Gottlieb Archival Research Center to achieve this goal. The University Librarian will lead the ongoing development of the vision and goals of the Library, integrate the plans of the Library with those of the University, and effectively communicate the vision and goals both within and beyond BU.
The successful candidate will be nationally and/or internationally recognized with demonstrated organizational leadership and substantial professional experience in library management. S/he shares BU’s global perspective and has the capacity to play a prominent role in shaping the landscape of scholarly resources and support at BU, working across the university. The Librarian will have a strong commitment to open access and innovative approaches to the enablement and preservation of scholarly work in the digital age. S/he will show the ability to develop the library into a nimble instrument capable of serving the broad range of research, teaching and learning interests at BU, including reshaping the physical space of the library in support of current and emerging learning and research activities. The Librarian will form partnerships and help to garner resources in support of this vision.
This position reports directly to the Boston University Provost.
The following describe the primary duties and responsibilities of the University Librarian:
• In collaboration with the faculty, librarians and staff, imagines, articulates and implements a vision for BU Libraries; advocates for and drives strategies aimed at achieving the Libraries’ mission and vision; establishes the BU Libraries as a leader in best practices in research library services in the digital age.
• Engages in strategic planning from inception to implementation; establishes specific, measurable goals and other performance expectations; employs a systematic review of progress toward goals and objectives.
• Demonstrates a high level of personal and professional commitment, enthusiasm, integrity and pride in the University and its values.
• Provides creative leadership in expanding access to research and learning resources to meet multi-media and multi-language needs of new and growing fields in the sciences and humanities.
• Builds and enhances existing local and regional collaborations with other libraries or related organizations who can help the BU Libraries achieve their mission and vision.
• Engages in grant seeking consistent with the goals of the BU Libraries, and fundraising as part of the University’s ongoing comprehensive campaign.
• Effectively engages and communicates with a wide audience of students, faculty, University administrators, alumni, community members and potential benefactors.
• Effectively manages the various services and functions of the University Libraries, including collection development, circulation, digital collections and open access, interlibrary loan, metadata services, and reference and instructional services.
• Establishes appropriate mechanisms to select, support and retain highly qualified, diverse librarians and staff.
• Creates a positive, diverse and inclusive work environment; ensures all librarians and staff are treated with dignity and respect.
• Empowers and supports librarians and staff to achieve performance goals and objectives; consistently "raises the bar" with regard to performance expectations; inspires accomplishment of goals and objectives; models professional excellence.
• Establishes the BU Libraries as an inclusive space and community oriented to supporting diverse students and faculty, including fostering connections across cultural, ethnic, racial and gender boundaries, as well as interdisciplinary and inter-organizational collaboration.
• Determines, implements, maintains and leads an effective management structure and team.
• Oversees development and effective utilization of financial resources, human resources, and physical infrastructure.
• Establishes and maintains effective relationships with other leaders within the University.
The ideal candidate will have:
• A demonstrated track record of professional engagement and achievement commensurate with senior leadership positions of major research university libraries.
• Strong understanding of evolving issues/trends in higher education, libraries, open access, and scholarly communication.
• Strong and proven capabilities in complex organizational management including strategic planning, financial stewardship, human resource management, risk management, and related decision-making.
• Demonstrated knowledge and application of best practices in inclusive pedagogy, interdisciplinary research and teaching, and the creation of diverse communities of practice.
• Demonstrated accomplishment fostering diversity and inclusion
• Proven experience or potential for success in development, fund-raising, and public relations
• The proven ability to work collaboratively with leaders across organizations.
• Exemplary interpersonal and communication skills.
• Impeccable integrity, sense of professionalism, and sound judgment.
Graduate-level degree in a field relevant to libraries and/or information sciences. Relevant experience may substitute for field of study.
Boston University (BU), a member of the Association of American Universities (AAU), is one of the leading private research and teaching institutions in the world, with two primary campuses in the heart of Boston and programs around the globe. Chartered in 1869, the University today enrolls over 33,000 students including over 16,000 undergraduates and employs nearly 10,000 faculty and staff members across 16 schools and colleges.
BU is one of the largest private universities in the United States and one of the Boston area’s largest employers. BU’s students come from all 50 states and over 135 countries. Students pursue studies on the Charles River and Medical Campuses as well as study abroad programs in over 30 cities around the world. The growth of Boston University over the last quarter century is profound, as it has evolved from a regional university, with a focus on undergraduate and professional education, to an internationally recognized, residential, research university that performed over $400 million of sponsored research last year across both Boston campuses.
Boston University Libraries, a member of the Association of Research Libraries since 1962, advance the University's research and teaching agenda with broad digital, online, and physical resources supported by extensive research and scholarly services. Current holdings comprise over 2.4 million physical volumes, 45,000 unique serial titles, 77,000 media titles, and 21,000 items in a fast-growing open access institutional repository. Research and scholarly support includes tutorials, instruction from research basics to graduate-level with a strong commitment to information literacy, reference services in each of the libraries and virtually, specialist consultations, curated guides, and digital scholarship and data management services. Specialized libraries, such as the Music Library and African Studies Library, develop targeted collections for area-specific research. The Libraries budget is approximately $22.8M, and our staff is comprised of 280 FTE.
Boston University Libraries have a tradition of sharing access to resources across the University, regardless of reporting structures or library affiliation. Access to all collections, services, and libraries is provided to the University community through the website (http://bu.edu/library/). The Libraries are committed to practices that are environmentally sustainable and that utilize our financial, physical, and personnel resources in scalable and sustainable ways to achieve our goals. Essential to the Libraries’ success is the development of a culture characterized by both continuous learning on the part of its staff, and data-driven decision-making.
In 2013 the Libraries adopted Ex Libris' Alma as the resource management system, with a focus on a format-neutral discovery platform delivered through Primo. Boston University Libraries were an early adopter of Alma. OpenBU, the institutional repository, runs on DSpace.
In addition to the Association of Research Libraries, Boston University Libraries maintain memberships in and affiliations with, among others: arXiv, Association of College and Research Libraries, BostonDH, Boston Library Consortium, Boston Theological Institute, Coalition of Open Access Policy Institutions, EDUCAUSE (via BU), HathiTrust, National Digital Stewardship Alliance, Ex Libris User Group of North America (ELUNA), New England Digital Scholarship Collective, New England Law Library Consortium, North East Research Libraries, OCLC Research Library Partnership, Open Content Alliance, Open Library for the Humanities, ORCID (via BU), and Portico. Our personnel play key leadership roles and hold elected offices in ALA, AALL, Boston Area Law Library Consortium (BALLCO), Association of Boston Law Libraries (ABLL), Law Libraries of New England (LLNE), New England Library Association (NELA), New Hampshire Library Association, Massachusetts LibraryAssociation, Vermont Library Association, and other organizations.
Boston University will provide a competitive compensation and benefits package appropriate for a position of this scope, stature, and level of responsibility.
Exceptional candidates are encouraged to submit a confidential letter of interest and CV or resume
University Librarian Search Advisory Committee
c/o Tracy Schroeder, Vice President, Information Services & Technology Office of the University
One Silber Way
Boston, Massachusetts 02215
Boston University is committed to fostering a diverse University community within a supportive and respectful environment. We believe that diversity is essential to our success as a leading research university with a global reach, and is an integral component of excellence.
Boston University prohibits discrimination against any individual on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, or because of marital, parental, or veteran status. Boston University strongly encourages minority group members, veterans, disabled individuals, and women to apply for positions for which they are qualified and that are of interest to them.