Research Services Librarian
Harvard College Library
Although the position will remain posted until filled,
applicants are strongly encouraged to apply by end of day on
December 10, 2021.
Houghton Library, the primary repository for Harvard's rare books
and manuscripts, seeks an innovative, collaborative, and
user-centered Research Services Librarian. Reporting to the
Associate Librarian for Public Services, this position has primary
responsibility for managing and coordinating all reading room
activities, including staff training and scheduling. In conjunction
with department colleagues, this position optimizes access systems
and proposes new services and workflows as appropriate.
The Research Services Librarian works positively and inclusively
with students, faculty, and the public, guiding users in
discovering, using, and evaluating resources, explaining
techniques, policies, and procedures, and empowering users to
conduct research in Harvard's distinctive collections. The Research
Services Librarian also participates in Houghton Library's teaching
and learning initiatives, including classroom instruction,
January-term classes, and outreach activities.
The Research Librarian works alongside colleagues and the Associate
Librarian for Public Services to establish and maintain a welcoming
and secure reading room, data driven operations, and a lively and
inclusive special collections library.
386057 Library Professional
- Design and administer service model that delivers high-quality
user-centered services; explore and implement changes to service
model and supporting processes.
- Manage the Houghton Reading Room and its operations, including
assisting patrons, materials circulation, safe handling of
collections, and reading room supplies.
- Administer Houghton's system for registering patrons and
tracking their requests for and use of collection materials; work
with collections management colleagues and other staff to ensure
collection material is onsite and ready for use when patrons arrive
in the reading room.
- Create and maintain training materials and manuals for desk
staff and student assistants and provide training for consistent,
courteous, efficient, and equitable patron service.
- Coordinate, maintain, and analyze circulation, reference, and
other use statistics; prepare annual reports on reading room
- Set and maintain schedules for reading room, reference, and
lobby coverage; maintain hours on the library website.
- Provide in-person and virtual reference assistance as needed,
including 4-6 hours of weekly reference desk shifts, one evening
shift (5-7pm), and a rotating 8-hour Saturday shift.
- Ensure excellent service, friendly reception, and positive
research interactions for researchers of all skill levels using
- Work across curatorial areas (Printing & Graphic Arts,
Early Books and Manuscripts, Early Modern Books and Manuscripts,
Modern Books and Manuscripts, and the Harvard Theatre Collection)
to prepare and lead instruction sessions with primary source
materials, including evaluating and selecting materials, developing
class plans, and collaborating with faculty on assignment design
and learning outcomes.
- Promote inclusive teaching practices and a commitment to
accessibility in the development and delivery of services and
- Build and foster collaborative relationships with Houghton
departments and librarians and archivists across the Harvard
- Participate in ongoing learning and professional development
relevant to position responsibilities and delivery of services and
programs, as well as Houghton and Harvard Library committees and
special projects. Collaborates with colleagues outside of Harvard
and in national professional organizations.
- Supervise Library Assistant(s) and Public Services
Assistant(s). Responsible for performance management, coaching, and
workflow supervision. Manages students as needed.
- Master's degree in library and/or information science or
- Two or more years of professional experience in instruction and
reference in an academic or research library environment
- Experience in providing reference and instruction in rare
books, manuscripts, and archives
Additional Qualifications and Skills
- Experience with research and teaching trends, methods, and best
DIVERSITY, INCLUSION, BELONGING, AND ANTI-RACISM AT HARVARD
Ability to manage complex projects and deliver to deadlines
Demonstrated initiative, flexibility, and ability to work
collegially and creatively within and across organizations
A commitment to diversity and to serving the needs of a diverse
Strong customer service orientation and success in improving the
Capacity to thrive in a changing working environment
Ability to develop and sustain effective collaborations with
students, faculty, academic departments and/or academic support
units, including working efficiently across disciplines and with
Experience with assessment tools and methods
Excellent written and oral communication
High level judgment and discretion, and comfort with ambiguity
Strategic thinking, negotiation, and change management skills
Strong analytical and problem-solving skills
Commitment to positive, solutions-driven responses to
Experience with or willingness to adopt new technologies and
systems that expand access to collections and facilitate their use
in research and teaching.
Record of engagement with professional groups and activities and/or
contributions to professional or scholarly literature
Working knowledge of a language other than English including, but
not limited to Spanish, French, Italian, Latin, or any Non-Roman
script [or alphabet] language
Across the Harvard Library, our work is enriched by our diverse
campus community. Our unique and wide-ranging abilities,
experiences, and perspectives are integral to achieving Harvard
University's mission of excellence in research, teaching, and
learning for our patrons, our collections, and our workplace. We
believe that an inclusive environment that cultivates and promotes
understanding, respect, and collaboration across our diverse
workforce enables our success.
We invite individuals with diverse backgrounds, experiences and
abilities to be a part of our community of over 700 staff members.
Our work with faculty, students and researchers to explore answers
to intellectual questions, enduring and new, and to seek solutions
to the world's most consequential problems, requires that we not
only reflect, but also champion our diverse society.
Harvard Library inspires collaboration, reflection,
experimentation, and discovery connecting users to related
disciplines and to University-wide teaching resources. The Library
engages users through curated discovery, digital collections,
reimagined physical space, and specialized research support. Today,
Harvard Library's holdings range from traditional print collections
to rapidly expanding access to digital resources. Harvard Library
provides the University's faculty, students, and researchers-now
and in the future-with exceptional experiences and comprehensive
access to these materials.
Learn more about our contributions to the academic enterprise by
visiting us at http://library.harvard.edu
and about the Harvard University community at http://hr.harvard.edu/why-harvard
The Harvard Library is a proud member of the Association of College
& Research Libraries (ACRL) Diversity Alliance
USA - MA - Cambridge
Harvard College Library
00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary
Criminal, Education, Identity
We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants
will receive consideration for employment without regard to race,
color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected
veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and
pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected