Head, Archival Collections Management - New York University, Division of Libraries

Posted on June 08, 2017


New York University Libraries seeks a collaborative and knowledgeable manager to serve as the Head of Archival Collections Management (ACM), leading a unified archival technical processing unit that supports acquisition, collection management, description, and discovery needs across the NYU special collections in New York. The successful candidate will combine demonstrated technical processing and management experience with substantial knowledge of standards and practices for preserving, processing, describing, and providing access to archival collections in archival and special collections library settings.

Reporting to the Associate Dean for Knowledge Access and Resource Management Services (KARMS) and in close collaboration with the Associate Dean for Collections and Research Services, the Head of ACM is a key senior managerial position within KARMS, within the Special Collections management team, and within the Libraries’ Department Managers Group. The position provides leadership, vision, strategic direction, and expertise for a core staff of 3 FTE professionals, with additional grant-funded staff varying over time (currently 10 FTE), and 4 FTE student workers. The staff is responsible for archival accessioning, arrangement, and description; functional ownership of systems for archival collection management and discovery; and acquiring and managing contemporary born-digital archival materials. The incumbent will closely collaborate with colleagues across the Division of Libraries, especially in the Special Collections, Preservation, and Digital Library Technology Services (DLTS) departments. Librarians are expected to serve as partners in the educational mission of NYU by establishing strong relationships with faculty and students, and providing responsive and innovative information services.


Under the general supervision of the Associate Dean for Knowledge Access and Resource Management Services, the successful candidate will: • Serve as the department head for ACM, with programmatic responsibility for ACM functional areas. The manager will foster a flexible, collaborative team-oriented work environment that allows staff to work across the organization, and promote innovative approaches to operational work. • Be responsible for planning, development, implementation, management, and assessment of services provided by ACM for NYU special collections, including collection management, accessioning, processing, description, discovery, and project planning for archival material in all formats. The position develops, implements, and monitors department strategic and action plans, setting production and service goals; compiles statistics; and develops narrative and statistical reports on unit activities and programs, particularly for reporting to grant funding agencies. ● Serve as part of the leadership team in KARMS, coordinating the ACM portfolio within the work of the larger KARMS group, and collaborating with colleagues throughout the unit to ensure a holistic approach to description and discovery. The position serves as part of the Special Collections leadership team, along with Heads of NYU’s three special collections and the Head of Preservation, under the direction of the Associate Dean for Collections & Research Services, to plan and prioritize collections management, description, digitization, and access projects and initiatives. • Collaborate with colleagues in Special Collections and University Development on fundraising proposals and projects, including planning grant projects, writing or contributing information to proposals, overseeing work on grant-funded projects and reporting to funders, and helping to develop fundraising priorities and schedules. • Oversee a program of work to select, implement, enhance, and provide ongoing functional ownership of collections management, discovery, and digital preservation software systems that support ACM and Special Collections work. The ACM head collaborates with colleagues in ACM, DLTS, and Library Information Technology Services to plan development cycles and allocate technology resources for ongoing support and maintenance of collection management (ArchivesSpace) and discovery (Blacklight) systems in production use. ● Work with colleagues in Special Collections and Digital Library Technology Services to develop a vision and practical roadmap for building institutional capacity to acquire, preserve, and provide access to born-digital archival materials. The position works with curators and ACM colleagues to enhance the Library’s capacity to responsibly acquire a growing volume of electronic records and personal papers, and develop user-centered description and access tools and workflows for born-digital materials; and with the digital archivist and other colleagues in DLTS, ensure preservation of electronic formats. The position helps to lead the transition of nascent web-archiving efforts to a robust, operationalized program. ● Collaborate with colleagues in the Preservation Department to ensure proper handling and housing methods for archival collections and the integration of good preservation assessment practice within the processing program. The position collaborates with colleagues in DLTS and Preservation to plan and implement digitization projects across all formats. ● Actively contribute to the profession through professional service, research and publication.


• Minimum one graduate degree (master’s level or higher) required for consideration. A second graduate degree will be required to obtain tenure. One of the two graduate degrees must be an MS/MLIS from an ALA-accredited institution in library and/or information science. • Five to seven years increasingly responsible leadership experience in a special collections, archives, research library, or related cultural heritage setting. Preferred experience in an academic or other research library. Three to five years of supervisory experience, including supervision of student workers and professionals. Ability and willingness to mentor staff, encourage professional growth, and strengthen cross-departmental collaborations. Ability to articulate a strategic vision for specialized collections and provide leadership to achieve departmental and larger organizational goals. • Demonstrated proficiency in archival theory and practice, especially accessioning, processing, and description, including iterative and extensible processing strategies. Familiarity with current approaches to accessioning, processing, and description of born-digital collections. Knowledge of relevant archival and bibliographic standards and frameworks (DACS, Records in Contexts, ISAD(G), ISAAR-CPF, FRBR, RDA; EAD, EAC-CPF, BIBFRAME, MARC). Knowledge of basic preservation and conservation issues as they relate to archival collections. Knowledge of rights administration and management issues for archival collections. • Ability to evaluate software systems that address the needs of ACM, articulate and translate programmatic need into functional technical requirements, and advocate for appropriate information technology solutions to archival and collection management challenges. Fluency with relevant software for managing archives information and assets. Some ability to manipulate archival data through scripting, or understand when approaches for bulk, machine-based manipulation of data is appropriate, strongly preferred. • Experience as lead processor or supervisor on large-scale and/or complex processing projects; managing multiple processing staff; setting and meeting goals, and developing metrics to measure progress throughout a project. Experience in planning, and participation in writing successful grant proposals, in managing grant-funded projects and seeing them through to completion, and in reporting on project activities to funders, strongly preferred. • Experience in working with special collections funding and collection donors and in writing grant proposals strongly preferred. • Evidence of the ability to lead and articulate a strategic vision for the management of archival collections and to provide leadership to achieve organizational goals and priorities. Demonstrated leadership and analytical skills, creative and innovative problem-solving skills, and a strong commitment to service excellence. Evidence of success in strategic planning, introducing and managing change in complex environments, budget planning and allocation. Outstanding organizational and analytical skills to manage multiple projects in a fast-paced environment with a fluctuating workload, conflicting and competing priorities, and frequent distractions and interruptions. • Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain close and productive working relationships with colleagues and constituents in an environment where consultation, flexibility, collaboration, and cooperation are essential. Ability to work creatively, collaboratively, and effectively and to play a leadership role in promoting teamwork, diversity, equity, and inclusiveness within the Library.


Faculty status, attractive benefits package including five weeks annual vacation. Salary commensurate with experience and background.


New York, NY


To Apply

To ensure consideration, submit your CV and letter of application, including the name, address, and telephone number of three references to: Applications will be considered until the position is filled.

Company Information

New York University Libraries: Libraries at New York University serve the school’s 40,000 students and faculty and contain more than 5 million volumes. The Libraries supports NYU’s vision to become the first true Global Network University by collaborating and providing services to our 11 global academic centers and “portal campuses” in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai. New York University Libraries is a member of the Association of Research Libraries, the OCLC Research Library Partnership, and the HathiTrust. The Libraries participates in a variety of consortia and collaborates closely with Columbia University Libraries and the New York Public Library through the Manhattan Research Library Consortium. For the NYU Libraries Mission and Strategic Plan go to

NYU’s Division of Libraries embraces diversity and is committed to attracting qualified candidates who also embrace and value diversity and inclusivity.

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