The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Libraries, located in Cambridge, MA, seeks a dynamic and thoughtful leader for the position of Associate Director of Collections (AD). Reporting directly to the Director of Libraries, Chris Bourg, the Associate Director will be part of the senior leadership team of the Libraries and will have responsibility for providing strategic leadership for general and distinctive collections in support of MIT’s local and global mission. The Associate Director will inspire, lead, and empower a staff of approximately 65 and will be responsible for the following departments and programs:
- Scholarly Communications and Collections Strategy – unites the aims of transforming scholarly communications with innovative and sustainable stewardship of the MIT Libraries’ collections budget, including building and managing collections, licensing, and outreach and services for the MIT community related to copyright, authors’ rights, open access, and related areas.
- Department of Distinctive Collections – combines a focus on redefining the role of distinct and “distinctly MIT” collections in research and learning with responsibility for collecting and stewarding the Institute’s history.
- Acquisitions and Appraisal – combines responsibility for core workflows and policies for the acquisition of a diverse range of library content with an emerging focus on developing new methods for appraising products and collections of all types.
The successful candidate will be an innovative and visionary leader while driving forward these strategic priorities:
- Provide leadership, relationship building, and inspiration with a particular focus on advancing openness and equity in scholarly communications, expanding collective collections building, and supporting new computational uses for collections;
- Work across MIT to advance the Open Access Task Force’s recommendations that intersect with the Libraries, including strategies for manifesting the principles for open science and scholarship in publisher contracts;
- In keeping with MIT’s focus on computation and machine learning develop and lead a strategy to provide services and/or support for computational access to collections;
- Innovate, collaborate, and experiment to realize the vision of scalable and standards-based approaches to metadata creation and management;
- Focus the Libraries’ curatorial efforts on collecting and making available content generated at MIT, and provide more emphasis on building and making available unique and distinctive collections;
- Shape and realize the vision of a scalable digitization program, as called for in the Future of Libraries Report.
About The MIT Libraries
The MIT Libraries aspire to advance knowledge by providing a trusted foundation for the generation, dissemination, use, creative engagement with, and preservation of information in support of the MIT mission and so that it can be brought to bear on the world’s great challenges and in the cause of social justice.
The MIT Libraries advance the Institute’s programs of research and study by providing a host of services, as well as access to more than 4.6 million tangible items, 25,000 cubic feet of archives and manuscripts, 9 terabytes of digital items, and 900 gigabytes of web archives. The library system has service points across the campus: Barker Library, Dewey Library, Hayden Library, Lewis Music Library, and Rotch Library, the Department of Distinctive Collections, comprising the Aga Khan Documentation Center, the MIT Institute Archives, Rare Books and Manuscripts, Visual Collections, and the Wunsch Conservation Lab, as well as the Library Storage Annex. The Libraries’ locations welcome over 600,000 visitors annually for inspiration, using collections, working collaboratively, quiet study, and creating new knowledge. The Libraries sponsor many community events, from data rescue hackathons to meditation sessions.
In November of 2015, Provost Martin Schmidt called together an Institute-wide task force, Future of Libraries, and a key recommendation from their report was the convening of the MIT Open Access Task Force, charged with developing recommendations to further support and enhance the open sharing of MIT research and educational materials and to contribute to the global transition to open science. The work of these Institute-wide task forces informs the MIT Libraries strategic priorities, and inspires a focus on the library as open, interactive, and computational.
MIT Libraries are leaders at MIT and within the Libraries’ profession, shaping the discourse on scholarly communication within the Institute and driving forward approaches to negotiations and research programs more broadly, in support of the Future of Libraries report.
The largest of the MIT Libraries, Hayden Library, which houses the humanities and sciences collections, will be undergoing significant renovation in 2019-2020. The overarching goal of the renovation is to envision and build a physical space that reflects the Libraries’ mission and values. This effort has provided the unique opportunity to review the service portfolio. Simultaneously, with the launch of MIT’s Schwartzman College of Computing, the MIT Libraries is focusing its service model and collections on computation and the application of artificial intelligence to research, by advocating for open access to the scholarly record, and by supporting the data-intensive needs of the Institute’s research community.
Organized in four directorates and a research center – Administrative Services, Collections, Research and Learning, Technology, and the Center for Research on Equitable and Open Scholarship (CREOS) – the MIT Libraries leadership team is well positioned to address the interdisciplinary strategic priorities identified by the Libraries and the MIT community. This is an exciting and pivotal time for the Libraries and the leadership team, as leaders for two of the Directorates are being sought. The incoming Associate Directors for Research and Learning and for Collections will work with the existing leadership team to map out a successful path to achieving the ambitious goals outlined in the Future of Libraries report.
About Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The mission of MIT is to advance knowledge and educate students in science, technology, and other areas of scholarship that will best serve the nation and the world in the 21st century.
MIT is dedicated to providing its students with an education that combines rigorous academic study and the excitement of discovery with the support and intellectual stimulation of a diverse campus community. MIT seeks to develop in each member of the MIT community the ability and passion to work wisely, creatively, and effectively for the betterment of humankind. Research at MIT today covers the full gamut of disciplines – from nanotechnology and brain science to energy and sustainability through to policy work related to world poverty.
MIT was founded in April 1861, two days before the start of the Civil War. Today MIT carries out its research and educational mission with over 12,500 employees and over 11,500 students. MIT offers 54 undergraduate majors in its Schools of: Architecture and Planning; Engineering; Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences; Science; MIT Sloan School of Management; and, as of later in 2019, the newly created MIT Schwarzman College of Computing. Supported by a wide range of funders, research expenditures across MIT were $731.51 million in FY2018.
MIT is an integral part of its host city of Cambridge, a diverse and vibrant community noted for its intellectual life, history, and thriving innovation climate. With a campus nestled between Central and Kendall Squares, and across the Charles River from Boston’s Back Bay, the Institute is optimally positioned to collaborate with its neighbors and to contribute to its community.
Experience and Qualifications
The ideal candidate for the Associate Director of Collections will be an experienced, innovative thinker who can collaboratively lead their team and engage the directorate in the active, open, and productive exchanges of ideas and perspectives that will advance the goals of the Libraries. Working with a large team, the next AD will arrive with significant management experience.
The Associate Director will also demonstrate evidence of many of the following qualities:
- Substantial experience in a research library or cultural heritage institution, including collection development and management, and a thorough understanding of issues facing research libraries, especially the changing landscape of scholarly communication;
- Demonstrated knowledge of best practices and current trends in both digital and physical resource management and operations, copyright and intellectual property issues, archives, rare books, special collections, and records management theory and practice, and preservation and digital content management;
- Ability to be a change agent and an innovative and forward-thinking leader who is strategic and passionate about transforming scholarly communications, and can translate strategies into actionable plans;
- Demonstrated strong commitment to transparency, collegiality, collaboration, mutual respect, and inclusiveness; ability to act in a fair, flexible, honest, trustworthy, and ethical manner;
- Proven record of organizational, administrative, supervisory and budget management skills;
- Demonstrated strong commitment to advancing social justice in the information ecosystem via strategic focus, planning, and action, and advancing within the organization by building equity, diversity, and inclusion into organizational systems and structures; and
- Advanced academic degree in a relevant field.
This search is being led by Mo Lashendock and Kristine O’Brien and supported by Josy Roche of Koya Leadership Partners. To express your interest in this role, please submit your materials, including your letter of interest and resume here. All inquiries and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.
MIT is an equal employment opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment and will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, ancestry, or national or ethnic origin.
About Koya Leadership Partners
Koya Leadership Partners is a national retained executive search and human capital consulting firm that works exclusively with mission-driven organizations, institutions of higher education and social enterprises. We deliver measurable results, finding exceptionally talented people who truly fit the unique culture of our client organizations and ensuring that organizations have the resources and strategies to support them. For more information, visit www.koyapartners.com.